It's a hard passage coming up this Sunday (John 2:1-11) for a pregnant woman who loves wine. I'm in the middle of 9 months of no wine and here I get to read and preach on Jesus making wine out of nothing! So unfair.
Not sure where I'm going yet. But with my newly clean office (see post below) and some so-far-succesful attempts at establishing (re-establishing) a general flow to my week, particularly my sermon writing, I'm going to try to hash a little bit of that out here. I need to end today with a Focus and Function and at least a tiny start at the bulletin. Then I get to leave with all my tasks for today checked off.
So anyway, back to the wine. Mmmmmmmm... the wine. A few thoughts and questions that came to me during my reading:
1. Even Jesus didn't seem to know when his hour had really come. I mean, he thought it wasn't here yet, but Mary thought different. Sometimes we have to respond to need at hand, even before we think we're ready.
2. With a little bit of insight from the Christian Century "Living the Word": What sanitizing jars do we need to use for other purposes? What rituals need new life?
3. To whom does Jesus reveal himself? Who gets the first glimpse of his glory?
4. Along the same lines, who knew what when (before and after the miracle)?
5. How does Jesus reveal himself?
6. What is revealed about Jesus? Is it just that he can do some pretty good magic?
7. What do they disciples believe?
Hmmmmm...not sure of any answers yet. Not sure of my preaching direction.
The theological perspective from Feasting on the Word is sort of another twist on question 1 that I raised. Jesus doesn't think it's his time, but Mary sees the need around him. Jesus' mother isn't as concerned with some larger divine plan as she is with the problem at hand, so she makes it her concern to get Jesus to do something.
I like this image of our responsibility to bring the world's needs to God's attention, to prod God into action, to change God's mind even.
My question for preaching and for the text, though, is this - - Does our responsibility end at just prodding God in action? Does our responsibility end at getting Jesus to do his magic? Or is there more we can do with our hands? Are these needs really out of our realm of assistance or is there another active role we can take IN ADDITION to prodding God? Does prodding God prod us, too?
OK. I give up working alone. Time to head to the RevGals to join a bigger conversation.