Start of Lent: A Time for Reconciliation
Vs. 9 When the steward tasted the water that had become wine, and did not know where it came from (though the servants who had drawn the water knew), the steward called the bridegroom.
The Great Lent (Valiya Nombu) or the fifty days of lent is observed as a preparation for our Lord's death on the cross and His resurrection. During this time Church gives emphasis on fasting, reconciliation, renunciation, alms giving, and prayer. Fasting and Prayer are an integral part of the Great Lent. Jesus Christ taught us "Except by prayer and fasting ", it is not possible to gain victory over Satan - St. Mathew 17:21. It is also a time of meditating on the salvific act of our God Almighty through His son Jesus.
Today’s scripture passage describes a form of “reconciliation.” Reconciliation of water into wine at the Marriage at Cana. There is no parallel of this miracle of the “water into wine” in the first three gospels. It is the first sign that Jesus performed to inaugurate his public ministry in this world. Some might ask what the need for Christ to perform a miracle was. The answer is very simple. Jesus was willing to enter into human situations of need and suffering, and in that process he might had been forced to do miracles. His motive of signs and miracles was compassion and responding to the human need and suffering. Mark 6:34 says “seeing the multitude he had compassion on them.”
Through this miracle Jesus began to reconcile ancient symbols to new symbols. Jesus replaces the water prescribed for Jewish purifications (in stone jars containing more than 120 gallons) by wine. Jesus gave new meaning to the old symbols. In Judaism ritually water stone jars were used for cleaning purpose only but when Jesus chose to use this symbol or stone jars, he was giving new meaning to life as a whole. Jesus re-defined the meaning. This first miracle of Jesus is not only the fulfillment of promises but also a challenge to reform the old symbols into a new system of power. Only Jesus can transform what is in the outside and useless to the center. This total reconciliation of ancient symbols to new symbols serves us a reminder to re think what are the areas we need to redefine, reconcile, and transform during this Great Lent.
Dear Lord help me to reconcile my whole being in Christ Jesus. Amen.
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY
Ancient symbols can be renewed with Christ’s touch
Rev. Biju P. Simon, MTC, Austin, TX
Christian Education Forum, Diocese of NAE of the Mar Thoma Church