But the Lord is in his holy Temple; the Lord still rules from heaven. He watches everyone closely, examining every person on earth. Psalm 11:4 (NLT)
It is early. I’d planned on taking this week off of my chapter-a-day posts, but this morning I woke before dawn and, after laying awake for a while, felt called to the quiet. Rarely these days am I around so much noise and activity. The Playhouse has been full of life and kinetic energy this week with five very busy young people and six weary adults trying desperately to keep up. So much fun. So much noise. So much laughter and screaming. So many tears. The surround sound of life abundant.
I’ve always found quiet in the mornings, even at home in our empty nest where things are pretty much quiet all day. “The Lord is in His holy Temple” today’s chapter tells us, and how interesting to have God’s Message remind those who follow Jesus that we ourselves are temples of God’s Spirit, who dwells in us (1 Corinthians 3:16). And so, as light slowly rises in the east I come to the quiet to center in, to seek the Lord in His holy Temple where He can be found, and to find peace at the start of my day. I come to the quiet even on days that will be filled with relative quiet, but I find this time with God especially rich on days that I know will be brimming over with life’s joyful noises.
I thought I would take the week off from my chapter-a-day posts, and yet here I am once again. I come back to the quiet. I rest on the page.
When the master of ceremonies tasted the water that was now wine, not knowing where it had come from (though, of course, the servants knew), he called the bridegroom over. “A host always serves the best wine first,” he said. “Then, when everyone has had a lot to drink, he brings out the less expensive wine. But you have kept the best until now!”John 2:9-10 (NLT)
Over the last several years, Wendy and I have come to love a nice glass of wine with our meals. We are no experts and we never will be. Still, it’s amazing how your nose and taste buds can begin to tell the differences in varieties, how they pair with what you are eating, and how they can change with time and conditions. It’s always fun when we run across a wine that is so good, we are both similarly struck by it.
Reading the account of Jesus turning water into wine in today’s chapter was interesting to read from the perspective of one who appreciates a nice vino. When Jesus tells the servants to take a dipper from the jar to the master of ceremonies he was following the same etiquette a good server will follow in a restaurant today by pouring the wine and letting the head of the party taste and approve before serving to the rest. The Master of Ceremonies knew his wine. He could tell the difference between a cheap everyday table wine and the good stuff. The wine that Jesus created was such a distinct contrast to what the party had been drinking and was so good that it moved the man to compliment the bridegroom on his choice.
I love that Jesus’ first public miracle was to provide the wine at a wedding reception. There’s nothing like a great wedding reception to celebrate the fullness of life and love. I love even more that the wine Jesus made was not a bottle of Three Buck Chuck but one that made the wedding guests sit up and take notice for its distinct quality. The wine Jesus made honored the host and esteemed him in the eyes of his guests.
The Creator makes good things on both the macro and micro levels. Along the journey I’ve come to appreciate that God pays attention to the details. Jesus said that He came to bring us life, and then He qualified that by adding the detail that He came to bring abundant life. How appropriate then, that He cared enough of to make sure that the wine He provided for the wedding reception was the good stuff.