John 2:1-11 (NRSV)
Chapter 2On the third day there was a wedding in Cana of Galilee, and the mother of Jesus was there. Verse 2Jesus and his disciples had also been invited to the wedding. Verse 3When the wine gave out, the mother of Jesus said to him, "They have no wine." Verse 4And Jesus said to her, "Woman, what concern is that to you and to me? My hour has not yet come." Verse 5His mother said to the servants, "Do whatever he tells you." Verse 6Now standing there were six stone water jars for the Jewish rites of purification, each holding twenty or thirty gallons. Verse 7Jesus said to them, "Fill the jars with water." And they filled them up to the brim. Verse 8He said to them, "Now draw some out, and take it to the chief steward." So they took it. Verse 9When 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 Verse 10and said to him, "Everyone serves the good wine first, and then the inferior wine after the guests have become drunk. But you have kept the good wine until now." Verse 11Jesus did this, the first of his signs, in Cana of Galilee, and revealed his glory; and his disciples believed in him.
The first sign Jesus performs in John's gospel is saving a party. The details seem to suggest light: Jesus references his "hour." Jesus' mother is there. There is water, and there is wine. It is the third day.
But shadows are cast: Later in John, Jesus' "hour" arrives at his arrest. His mother appears again, at the cross. Jesus is offered sour wine. His side is pierced, and water and blood flow out. And we are left awaiting "the third day."
With all the ties to the end of John's gospel, it may seem the point in this text is the foreshadowing. Except, the wine Jesus makes is to bring life to the party then and there, at Cana. And, by God, it's really good wine! Jesus isn't only about later-life, down the road. Jesus is also about now-life, abundant, here and now.
Look up: Jesus, the light of the world, is scattering shadows and throwing a party now. And it's lit.
God, give us a foretaste of the feast to come, hope in the banquet that never ends, and faith to live into abundant life here and now. Amen.