A man walked into the wilderness. No it’s not the opening line to a joke, it’s the serious experience of Jesus when he was led by the Spirit into the wilderness to sort out the challenges he will have to deal with in his life. This rather tough experience comes just after the joyful celebration of Jesus baptism. It’s an example of the two sorts of experience even we can have in our lives.
In the wilderness, Jesus answers the temptations by quoting his scriptures, the Torah. For each temptation he has an answer.
They include, we don’t live by bread alone, but by understanding the word of God, we are to worship God and God only and it’s not smart to try to put God to the test.
Following 40 days of this sort of struggle it’s off to a wedding. When the wine runs out, Jesus’ mother challenges him to solve the problem. She’s not suggesting that he and his disciples make a quick trip to the LCBO; but rather he use his power as the Son to help the celebration continue. Jesus pushes back at first and then does what any good son does: listens to his Mom and turns some water into wine. Not just some, possibly 120 to 180 gallons to be specific.
We see two possible lessons in this. Although water into wine seems a rather trivial endeavour, it’s Jesus way of saying that God is concerned about even the most mundane of our needs. The other has to do with God being the God of abundance. When Jesus feeds 5000 with a few fish and loaves, there are 12 baskets over the need. When Jesus resolves to get involved with the wine, he supplies more than the Best Man could have ever hoped for. We can go to God in prayer with our most basic needs and expect God to go over the top when God chooses to answer.