Ready for the Wedding

January 21, 2018

Revelation 19.6-10, John 2.1-11

 

The wedding banquet—a symbol of the Kingdom of Heaven; with the guests dressed in wedding garments—a symbol of the righteous deeds of the saints. Rev 19.8 How are my wedding garments of righteousness? I fear that mine might be a little threadbare—but then I would have misunderstood what this means.

 

We’re not being asked if we’re perfect. If Christ came today, or any day, with perfection as the key, then I am utterly lost. I suppose  that none of us would get in, as the only way any of us are entering into the Kingdom is not by our actions but through our trust that it is the death and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ that has saved us.  No, this is something different, this is about our attitude to life and the choices we make in response to the love of God - a humility that recognises that we are sinners and that we need Jesus, a willingness to respond to Christ’s call and to allow ourselves to change and to be changed. These are our wedding garments—not the deeds themselves, but our attitude of humility and our obedience to Christ.

 

If we are honest, most of us have a gut feeling about Jesus calling on our lives—we have a holy discomfort about the way things are. It may be a behaviour or attitude, it may be a change in the things we do. If you find yourself at a loss, just ask God to show you; it may not be now, but over the coming week it’ll become very clear to you.

Change is a difficult thing though, we come up with all kinds of reasons why not.

 

I can’t change, it’s too difficult. But consider that each change begins with a step, something relatively simple. The issue of there not being enough wine was a massive one, it would be a local story that would never go away, the couple would see it as a bad omen for their marriage. What was it the servants were asked to do? A task that they did regularly, going to the well for water, albeit at an unusual time. But their obedience to the simple task enabled Jesus to do the seemingly impossible.

 

I can’t change, I can’t add another thing into my life; but then God is not asking us to pile more things into our lives— it’s about the change we need to make to our existing lives. The water became wine, the same quantity had a wholly different quality. We are being asked to make changes to our lives so that they have a wholly better quality for God and the Kingdom, for ourselves, for our families and for the world. It may well be that we are being asked to let something go in order to take something up.

 

I can’t change, I really don’t want to be “that kind of Christian” - what ever, in our minds, “that kind of Christian” might be. What did the Steward of the feast say? “You have saved the best wine until now.” God is not looking for caricatures, consider the people Jesus chose as his apostles, fishermen and a tax collector, amongst others. God is offering something so much more worthwhile, such better quality, that we’ll wonder why we had to wait until now to enjoy it.

 

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© 2019 by St Lawrence Church Eastcote. Photos courtesy of Jon Wyand Photography.