For one of the class we have with the sisters, we were instructed to read this certain passage, reflect upon it, find Mary’s message for us in it, and such. Then we are to give the title to Mary that we feel in our hearts. We have been talking about some that we could give her based on specific stories from the bible. Here is the passage that we are to use. It is John 2:1-12.
On the third day there was a wedding in Cana in Galilee, and the mother of Jesus was there. Jesus and his disciples were also invited to the wedding. When the wine ran short, the mother of Jesus said to him, “They have no wine.” (And) Jesus said to her, “Woman, how does your concern affect me? My hour has not yet come.” His mother said to the servers, “Do whatever he tells you.” Now there were six stone water jars there for Jewish ceremonial washings, each holding twenty to thirty gallons. Jesus told them, “Fill the jars with water.” So they filled them to the brim. Then he told them, “Draw some out now and take it to the headwaiter.” So they took it. And when the headwaiter tasted the water that had become wine, without knowing where it came from (although the servers who had drawn the water knew), the headwaiter called the bridegroom and said to him, “Everyone serves good wine first, and then when people have drunk freely, an inferior one; but you have kept the good wine until now.” Jesus did this as the beginning of his signs in Cana in Galilee and so revealed his glory, and his disciples began to believe in him.
However familiar it may be with me, I had to read it over and over again before I could come up with some words that could describe my reflection. There are many different perspectives one could take. Even though my focus is to be on Mary, I ended up seeing it from others’ perspectives too, which served to help in getting a good grasp on what may have been really happening at the wedding. I did not allow myself to think of Mary quite yet.
The first time through, I was drawn to the servers and what they must have felt and thought. To them, this man was expecting them to bring him water so that they could serve wine. Yes, they had done it, but there must have been some confusion in their minds.
The second time through, I thought about the two getting married. We do not hear about them other than the praise that the headwaiter (who had not known what had happened) had given the bridegroom at serving the best wine last instead of first. Did the newly married couple know what had happened later down the line? Had they known that they ran out of wine and yet there was more to be served?
In the third reading that I did, my focus went to Jesus. This was the first miracle performed by Him. What was He thinking in the process? Maybe Jesus had an idea of how He would react, but He may also have had no idea what would be said of this miracle. I am left to wonder, would Jesus have done it if Mary was not there?
From there, I read the story a fourth time. In this reading, I focused on who Mary was in this event and what role she had in the miracle. I found that she had an immense patience with Jesus. Her son calls her woman and gives what we would call today as attitude. She knows what Jesus is to do, as she was told by an angel some years ago. Was she be spoken to by God to start Jesus off on His ministry? Despite what Jesus told her, she still turned to the servers and told them to do whatever Jesus tells them to do. The respect people must have had to listen to what she says, overstepping what Jesus told her. During and after the miracle, the writer does not tell us anything more about Mary’s presence. Letting my imagination run, I can see her backing up and watching from the side all that is taking place. I see a big smile on her face at seeing Jesus begin the ministry He was born to do. There had to be wisdom in her that she knew what to do and what to say. There had to be patience in her in order to respond as she did in talking to Jesus. There was a deeper connection she had to what good needed to happen and how. Despite that Jesus was God made flesh, He grew up with a mother as any human child would. Mary, His mother, had the wisdom and patience with Jesus as God gave her on the day He was conceived.