“They have no wine” Said the one who had carried Jesus inside her body. As a younger person she’d likely endured the scorn of those that knew her and possibly that of those people whose names she did not know. Had she have been married then news of her pregnancy would probably not have spread like wildfire through the city; human nature being what it is.
What was, heavenly speaking, a legitimate relationship was seen by those around her as abominable. The whispers as she walked laboriously past were uttered just loud enough for her to hear. A divine encounter that only she understood; a romantic liaison in the supreme act of saving mankind from their sin would be bastardized, ridiculed and all because they did not understand.
Doubtless, countless were the words she’d utter to gain herself some freedom, vindication; a vain attempt to exonerate herself. Emotional litigation may have been entered into in the marketplace, turned courtroom, as she shared the story of the angels visit and those eternal words telling her of the Savior of man growing inside her.
Knowing the heart of man as we do it would likely be safe to say that there was no shortage of criticism. The scriptures are very clear concerning the fate of an adulteress; death by stoning.
In Mary’s’ day, as in ours, words are hurled to slowly, painfully take the life of the “guilty.” Sad to say it is still done in public. Some things never change.
We are more refined, or so we would like to think; we don’t use actual stones to kill the unfaithful ones among us. No, we use words like correction, church discipline, confrontation, rebuke, admonition and “speaking the truth in love”.
Like it or not, you can relate.
You have had a divine encounter of your own and you are now carrying Jesus inside you. His presence within has caused you to not only appear different but to live in a way that is “out of character” for you.
Dreams, visions, enlightenment as you've read; in one way or another you know you've heard Him. You saw the proof of it in His word.
In recent days the Lord has said something to you that no one else understands. Thousands of words have been exchanged between you and someone as you try desperately to free yourself of the chains of their misjudgments. Oftentimes you’ve left the conversation feeling more in bondage than when you first walked into the room, the sanctuary, the pastors’ office, the counselors study.
You’ve been learning that there is only one thing more excruciating than the isolation that comes from being misunderstood; that is, try as you may, you are still alone. The words He spoke were a promise to set men free, just as His words to you are. Yet, you feel anything but liberation.
With incredulous jeers you’ve heard, “What? The Lord said what?”
Looking for an ally you’ve nearly torn the pages from your bible scouring it for a good defense, for the words that will prove your innocence.
You are certain you heard Him correctly. You know, as no one else does that those words uttered in private were His. The command, the decree and with the consequent conception of Christ in you that has changed your life forever.
Yes, you can relate and though you’ve not used the exact words of Mary that day, at the wedding of Cana; you know what she was really hoping for.
“They have no wine”. Was not a true statement; they did have wine but not of the same quality.
As a guest at a social event have you ever gone to another guest and told them that the refreshments are gone? Not likely. Wouldn’t it make sense to mention this to the host? It’s a rhetorical question. Mary had an agenda. (Agendas are not always bad things)
But she did what you and I have done and for the very same reasons. It’s not that she cared about the absence of grape juice. She was looking to have her social record expunged.
“Jesus, show them that what I’ve gone through is because of You inside of me. Get me off the hook here.”
“Jesus, prove to them that I am not the ‘unfaithful’ one they assume I am. Explain to them that my having you inside of me happened just the way I said”.
“Lord, your presence within has changed everything; the way I feel, the way I talk and at full term it certainly changed the way I walked. Make them understand.”
Now you see it, don’t you? Like it or not, you can relate.
Those feelings that keep you awake at night as their words echo in the dungeon of your mind. The Old Testament Joseph has been there too; banished by brothers because of a revelation.
Let’s you and me look at this for another minute. What did it take for even one to finally see? To truly understand?
There was no one she wanted to be understood by more than her man, her mate, Joseph. Isn’t that acceptable and understandable to want to be heard by those we consider as being closest to us?
Her desperation inspired her to find the words that would illuminate him. The chapter and verse that would “open the eyes of the blind”. It would take a dream, a revelation. She was powerless to convince any one. Only a “light from heaven” would cause him to see. Gives new meaning to “quiet desperation” doesn’t it?
If this is where you are right now, I promise you this, it will get worse before it gets better. Mary had to wait for years for the opportunity of an acquittal, so will you. After all, the servant is not above the Master.
How will your vindication come? The same way it did for her, and with very few exceptions.
In your day, as in Mary’s the folks around her saw him. That he was there was obvious.
It may not be until the Day of the Lord that they see Him.
It might mean that your days here are to be filled to overflowing with being misunderstood and rejected, but only by man. Regardless of how close they are.
(The movie, the DaVinci Code, should be ample proof that Mary is still misunderstood by most).
In frustrated silence you wait. The longing for the chance to say “they have no wine” is your hearts desire.
Mary’s motive, like yours and mine, is for us to be free from misunderstanding. His agenda is for man to be free from sin.
Don’t be surprised when He says to you the same words He said to the one who had Him inside: “My hour is not YET come.”
When His hour is come, yours will too. For, you see, it is not until they see Him as He is that they will see you for who you are. I would guess that many of the disciples heard of Mary's condition; but it wasn't until they saw Jesus that they understood her.
Watch how you pray. Learn to listen for the cries of your heart that say in some form or fashion: “Lord, show them…”
Be willing, and trusting to hear His response to your agonized plea for justice.
When His Day is here and He says to you; “Well done, good and faithful servant.”
Then, and perhaps only then will there be wine, a wedding and a feast.
Don - This is an excellent article. Very well written, insightful and thoroughly captivating. I read it twice and was engrossed both times with your attention to "see beyond the surface" of Mary's request (and our own). I hope you get it published elsewhere also. In Christ's Love,
Hello there Don, this is an article that I will read and study again!! "with prayer and listening to the Lord." Thank you for sharing. I also want to thank you for bringing something to my attention....
Oh my, I sure am glad you read something I posted; "Calendar of my Heart". I realize now, thanks to you, that I was not clear with my poem about my son. I have corrected it, and put a heading at the top, that he is living at a mental health-care facility, and God is his "case worker"...My son is doing well these days, and truly because of God's tender mercy!!
Have a wonderful day in the Lord! Happy New Year too.