Photo: Sea of Galilee Sunrise - Nov 10, 2011
Today was our first full day in the Holy Land starting at 6:30AM with Morning Prayer at the Sea of Galilee led by Rev. Marcia King. We then started our travels from Tiberias to Nazareth, first stopping at Wadi Hamam, the footpath that Jesus would have traveled as a shortcut between Nazareth and Capernaum on the Sea of Galilee. Next we visited Cana, the site of the wedding where Jesus performed his first miracle, turning water into wine. The end of the day was capped off with two visits to children who attend secondary schools with scholarship monies from St. George’s: Rosette Deeb Marchi who is a 2nd grader at Salesian School and Eliz Samer Aquiti, a 6th grader at Terra Sancta School. Both schools are in Nazareth.
I’ll write future blogs about the Wadi Hamam and the visits with our scholarship children, but today I write about the lesson from the wedding at Cana; much more than just a miracle.
Cana means a deep red color; pomegranates are from here. The original site of Cana is a little north of where we visited, but when the original town was destroyed, this area was created in “memory of Cana.” In a small chapel, we had the privilege of witnessing the renewal of wedding vows for four couples on the trip with Rev. Leigh Spruill officiating. It was a glorious event for those renewing vows and those of as witnesses! Then our attention turned to the wedding reception at that first wedding at Cana!
Our host, Fr. Kamal gave us the context of the original scene. This was a family wedding with Mary helping to serve. She was on one side of the room with the women, and Jesus was serving on the men's side, having invited the disciples to join him in the party. Running out of wine would bring dishonor to the family, so Mary did the unthinkable and crossed the gender line. Jesus did not rebuke her for her question but rather was concerned about her laxity in crossing to the men’s side to tell him of the situation.
Mary didn't tell her son what to do; she merely presented the situation, trusting that he would take care of it in the best way possible. Instead of a request of what to do, Mary came to Jesus in the form of prayer. Fr. Kamal says this is the lesson of Cana- how Mary trusted her son when adversity struck!
Fr. Kamal challenged us: How does this relate to our prayer life? Do we tell God what He needs to do to solve our concerns, or do we come to Him in prayer, presenting the situation and trusting that He will do what is best for us?
I pray that we will remember the wedding at Cana not only as the first miracle, but also as Mary’s demonstration of the trust we must have in God.