Recently, while doing a study on the Gospel of John, participants were asked the following questions about Jesus’ miracle at the Wedding at Cana: “Why do you think the Scriptures record this as Jesus’ first miracle?” and “What is the significance about turning water into wine?” I must confess, my first instinct was to say, “I have no idea” and move to the next question. But something made me stop and ponder this for a while. After some thought, the Holy Spirit began to open my eyes to the great significance in Jesus taking one substance and turning it into another. In this miracle, Jesus took water and changed the chemical composition so that it became wine. And not just any wine, but the best wine usually served at the beginning of wedding celebrations. When Jesus took one substance and changed it into a completely different substance he was showing us what he does with our lives when we accept him as Lord and Savior. Of course, Jesus loves and accepts us as the sinful people we are, but His love is too great to allow us to remain in our brokenness. We may start our journey with Christ as wounded and imperfect but over time, His mercy and correction change us into restored and healed followers who bear His image in the world. Paul echoes this teaching when he writes in 2 Corinthians 5:17, “This means that anyone who belongs to Christ has become a new person. The old life is gone; a new life has begun!” Turning water into wine was just a shadow of what Jesus could and would do in the hearts and lives of His followers. Furthermore, while this was Jesus’ first miracle, His last earthly miracle was rising from the dead which demonstrates again a new creation. Among many things, Jesus’ resurrection shows us the new life that awaits us after our life on earth comes to an end. Death does not have a final say but is merely a necessary process we must face to enter into new life with Him in glory! Yes, Jesus came to restore, but He also came to bring the new... new life, new dreams, new hopes, and new promises.
This is particularly meaningful to me as I have grieved the loss of two close family members in the recent past. At times, the sorrow was overwhelming, but I sensed the Lord whispering to me in between all the tears that He longs to do something new in my life and have me make new memories. While this does not help me miss my family members any less, it does help me focus on Jesus and have hope for my future in Him. Friends, we no longer have to be bound by what we perceive to be inevitable or immense burdens to us or our circumstances because Jesus came to bring us new lives where He is King and Lord. What things of old do you still hold on to? Will you trust Him to bring the new when you let go of the old? Will you trust that He knows what is best and He wants to do a new thing in your life? If not, why not? Throughout the Gospels, Jesus not only promises but also demonstrates how He wants to bring new life to his followers. Stand on His promises and trust in His goodness. He will never let you down!
Maria Goodwin is a native New Yorker and has lived in various parts of NYC during her life. Presently, she resides in Staten Island, NY where she was born and raised. Maria works full-time as a Social Worker and has a Master’s degree from Columbia University. She has been married to Phillip for eight years and has two grown stepdaughters, one niece, three nephews, and one nephew in heaven. Currently, Maria is enrolled at the New York Institute for Biblical Studies which is located on the grounds of Calvary Chapel in Mariners Harbor, Staten Island.