How not to miracle



Dear Andrew –  What a wonderful question left hanging yesterday: “Well – that was what he said then and I am still puzzled.”  I love how we seek to imprint us on God and – in particular – Jesus.

Jesus who is without sin – who is God in human form (just without our bad bits)  – our better (best?) self – the self we would love to be (if it wasn’t for all the hard work that went with it).

Mary as a pushy-mum … Jesus as a dutiful son … and the consequence: a swimming pool of fine wine.

And this to avoid “leading into temptation” all the alcoholics?

Firstly, I have never thought so deeply about the “first miracle”, and secondly – now that I am – it seems to me that we might all have missed a trick or two.



Mary as a pushy-mum … what a wonderful illustration of “ask and it shall be given” – a specific response to that specific (voodoo) requirement: “in Jesus’ name we ask” – the “how to get God to say yes” strategy.  Mum (or me) who simply wanted the best for those she loved.  Mum (or me) who knew Jesus could and would deliver.  Mum (or me) who was in and of this world.



Jesus as the naive deliverer … or perhaps an example of “be careful what you wish for” – an example of how we ask with the best of reasons without ever considering the consequences to those “not like us” – who are not us but “them” (in all “their” glorious shapes and sizes) – the unconsidered “not us” we live amongst and are blind to.



The alcoholic living amongst us … or perhaps an example of the “not us” never ever included in this parable (or any other that I know of).



And what about the “slaves” without any choice at all – having to lug all those gallons of brew around the place – what temptation that must have been …

And what of the “social niceties” of the guests themselves – tempted to drink more than they should – eat more than they should – dance more than they should – spend more than they should …

And what of the happy couple?  Was their first night of legal copulation befuddled by this tsunami of fine wine … was their marriage forged on the consequences of alcoholic befuddlement … ?

And what about mum and dad – did they suffer a small unreported apoplexy at the shock of finding “someone” had slipped in a small lake of fine wine at their expense?  Was their proud day riddled with suspicion of their “guests”?

The list for “temptation” is endless!  Where does it start – where does it end?

And don’t get me started on the “gay issue” – what about the effect on “their” repressed lifestyle?  How would “they” cope with so much booze and the loosening of their tongues and morals?

Which brings me to the “no sex before marriage” … the “okay to have sex” ones (once married) and the same loosening of tongues (and wandering hands) that goes with so  much booze!



In fact the more I think about this parable – the more I think it a lesson in how not to miracle!

But why not stop with water into wine?

What about all the poor cripples eking out a reasonable-living from all those small hand-outs … what did they think when they had to find a proper job … what would their CV for future employment look like … “normal, normal, screwed, screwed, no hope, gizza job, any job … please!”  – how did their lives change (not) for the better?

And then the ones with undiagnosed mental challenges … and the dead / deceased / passed (and smelling)?  What did they all think when suddenly thrown back into a life of NORMAL poverty, pressure and illness?

And THEN what about the ones (the majority of this world down the ages) who NEVER get “miracled” … what did/do they (we) think about not being important enough … not being chosen enough …?

Because when I go into enough detail …

God just doesn’t do his job (to our expectations and standards).

So perhaps instead of us worshipping him it should be the other way around.

Perhaps it is him that “sees darkly”.



(please accept this “tongue in cheek” piece as an affectionate tribute for the “hard questions” you are never afraid to ask)



1 thought on “How not to miracle

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