On the third day, a wedding took place at Cana in Galilee. Jesus’ mother was there, and Jesus and his disciples had also been invited to the wedding. When the wine was gone, Jesus’ mother said to him, “They have no more wine.” (John 2: 1-3, NIV)
Ever wonder why Mary spoke to Jesus about the wine?
The text makes it sound like she had some kind of role in the party planning. Maybe she and the other women provided pies or cakes, maybe even a casserole for the dinner. She was there, but Jesus and his disciples were invited guests. They had nothing to do with the planning and execution of the wedding or its celebration.
At first, I imagined Mary scurrying around, trying to find a solution and breathlessly apprising Jesus of the crisis as she hurries past. But his response, and her instructions to the servants, tell us she was deliberately telling Jesus about the wine problem. She expected him to do something about it.
Jesus hadn’t yet done any miracles. He was beginning his public ministry, and hadn’t even called all twelve of his disciples yet. What did Mary expect?
I can’t say for sure, but I like to think she was acting out of her mother’s heart. This was her first-born, her son. Special in his own right, but even more so because of the circumstances surrounding his birth. She’d never forget the heart-stopping appearance of the angel, or the news that she–a nobody from Nazareth–would bear God’s own Son, the long awaited Messiah! Those memories got her through the following weeks and months of wagging tongues and self-righteous looks of disapproval.
Jesus–her son, her first offspring. The one she’d made all the parenting mistakes on. The one she’d cradled in her lap before the demands of other children came along. She’d seen the world through his eyes of wonder, sometimes through his tears. He’d always experienced things at a deeper level than her other children.
Did they talk, mother and son, when the day’s work was done? When the other kids weren’t around to interrupt? Did Jesus tell her when he sensed the approaching time of his ministry? Had he told her anything about his struggle with temptation during his forty days in the wilderness? Did Mary ever ask him what He saw in the future?
Often, a special bond develops between a mother and her son, especially the first-born. More than anyone, Mary knew he was the very son of God. The God of Israel…who parted the sea and dropped manna in the desert, who made the walls of Jericho crumble, and even made the sun retreat for an hour. Mary knew her son’s potential.
I think that’s why she told the servants, “Do whatever he tells you to do.” She had faith in her son. In God’s son.
Mothers always know.