There’s something very simple and very touching about the Gospel account of the wedding at Cana. A newly married couple run out of wine at the reception; Mary, who is a guest of the couple (which makes me wonder who this couple were) tells Her Son very simply that this is so. In two short and simple sentences, the matter is dealt with and the couple are preserved from embarrassment.
The use of words here is interesting. Jesus refers to His Mother as “Woman” – something He does on several occasions in the Gospels. Always very careful and deliberate in His words – following the example of His Mother – this makes me wonder why this is so. That is for another time, however.
Although Jesus notes that “My time has not yet come”, referring to the beginning of His public ministry, still He does as His Mother requests and performs His first miracle. For anyone who doubts the powerful and maternal intercession of the Mother of the Lord, this account in the Gospel should be sufficient to clear any doubts.
At a deeper level, perhaps this account isn’t actually about wine at all.
Instead, perhaps it says something about the power of allowing the Lord to act in our regard. We may be acutely aware of our personal limitations, our failings, our fallen nature; we are as common as water. And yet, the Lord’s grace acting upon us – remember, grace builds upon nature, it does not replace it – can make us into something special, new and perfect wine.
At Mass, our Priest spoke of this Gospel account and he noted that the quantity of wine produced would have been around one thousand bottles – an exceptional wedding reception, by anyone’s standards. With the Lord, there are no half measures; He expects all or nothing, and He detests when we are neither one thing nor another – remember what he said about salt that had lost it’s taste, and water that was lukewarm.
If we truly allow the Lord to act and to build upon us, transforming us with His divine grace, we may be certain that the new wine He will bring forth, will be neither lukewarm nor tasteless.