Joy! John 2

The past few weeks have brought to me joy and revelation.  I realized I had allowed myself to allow others to steal my joy, that I had become mired in a rut of routine – both in my day to day living and in my worship.  I was driving along listing to one of Chris Tomlin’s cd’s.  I had several songs that had touched me that I would listen to several times over.  By a mechanical malfunction, by deus ex machina, but I realize now by miracle, instead of “All To Us” playing,  the song “Awakening” played.  I had listened to the song several time but this time, I heard it.  I felt it in my heart.  I played it a few times more until I was singing it, lifting it up in prayer.

I asked my friend Beni if he knew this song.  His reply was amazing to me:  it was his favorite song by Chris Tomlin.  How he had played it over and until he sang along and then singing along as if he were in a crowd.  He said to him, it represented “inspiration in situ”.  And truly, it is.  I felt myself coming back alive, the breath of the Holy Spirit blowing joy into my soul.

That weekend, a friend for whom I had been praying for a few years called me at 4:00 am.  You see, he is in Japan and had just gotten out of church.  He knew I would be awake and he wanted to tell me,  he believed.  He had given his whole being to Jesus.  We laughed and wept across the miles.  Joy – unspeakable joy!  I shared this with Beni who was able to also share in that joy and to be encouraged.

I find it perfect that Jesus’ first miracle would be the miracle of joy.  The Bible uses symbols for things:  water is life, wine is joy, for example.  Jesus went with his mother and disciples to a wedding in Cana.  While there, the wine gave out.  At that time, this was serious business.  The wedding celebration would last for several days and there had to be plenty of food, wine, gifts for the attendees – very very serious business.  A guest, could by law, sue the master of ceremonies if there were not enough food or wine for the duration of the celebration.

It would appear that Mary and Jesus were related to the family of the wedding and that Mary was recognized as being one of the older women who would have authority over any events.  It was natural the servants came to her with problem of no more wine.  Oops.  She turned to her son and told him the problem.  He shrugged. “Not our problem. It isn’t time for me yet.”  Probably for the last time, Mary exerted her authority with her son.  She told the servants to do as he told them.  Jesus had the servants fill large ceremonial urns with water.  A dipper of the contents was then taken to the master of ceremonies who was amazed – the quality of the wine he tasted was the best of any that had yet to be given to the guests.

As Jesus transformed ordinary water into wine, so He turns our ordinary lives into joy.  The water of our life becomes the wine of joy – and it is better than anything we have had before!  Our earthly vessels are filled with joy that only comes from the changing grace of Jesus.   My friend is changed.  I am changed.  Beni is changed.  You all can be changed.  My joy has been renewed.  I have experienced “inspiration in situ“.

Nehemiah 8:10 …the joy of the Lord is your strength

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