What do you do when you face an unexpected or impossible problem? Try to fix it, panic or call for help? Mary, the mother of Jesus, models how I want to act.
At the beginning of His public ministry at age thirty, Jesus attended a wedding at Cana. Mary must have been helping at the wedding. When the wine ran out, she brought the problem to Jesus. You can read the account here John 2:1–11.
Mary said to Jesus, “They have no more wine.”
That’s it. No pleading, no explanation of how embarrassing or urgent this was, no pointing out how this might foster faith in His disciples. Just, “They have no more wine.”
To the servants she said, “Do whatever He tells you.”
Jesus told them to fill the ceremonial washing jars with water. They filled six 20-30-gallon jars to the brim. “Now draw some out and take it to the master of the banquet,” He said.
I find myself chuckling when I read this. Did the servant hold his breath when the host tasted the water? How shocked and relieved he must have been when the master proclaimed, “Everyone brings out the choice wine first and then the cheaper wine after the guests have had too much to drink; but you have saved the best till now.”
I draw a few personal applications from this scene.
- Tell Jesus the problem—not the solution.
When I bring my problems to God I often suggest ways to solve them. There is nothing wrong with asking. But did you notice, Mary didn’t tell Jesus how to fix the problem? And Jesus did something that defied imagination.
- Follow His instructions and leave the results with Him.
Mary didn’t supervise Jesus’ actions. She told the servants to do what He said. I’m sure His directions didn’t make sense to them. But because they obeyed, they experienced a miracle.
Trust Jesus with My Problem
Mary knew Jesus’ compassion. She trusted His love, wisdom and ability. Perhaps Jesus had miraculously multiplied food for His family in the meager years after Joseph died. Satan knew He could turn a stone into bread (Matt. 4:3). After Mary told Jesus about the need, she left the problem in His capable hands.
If Mary didn’t feel a need to tell her son how to solve the problem, why do I think I need to come up with the solution for Jesus to execute? I only need to trust and obey Him. I can’t see His spiritual power at work anymore than I can see the wind. But when I trust Him I will witness the result.I can’t see God's spiritual #power at work anymore than I can see the wind. But I can witness the result. #hope Click To Tweet
- How can you apply Mary’s example to your life and relationship with Jesus?
- Running out of wine was embarrassing but not a necessity for life. What does Jesus’ miracle show you about His heart and power?
For more lessons from Mary and other women in Jesus’ family tree, check out Little Women, Big God. A perfect gift for yourself and for a friend.
Here’s a beautiful worship song by Michael W. Smith, “Breathe”