As I've been reading John this week, something I wrote not to long ago came to mind. It's the story of Jesus turning the water into wine at the wedding of Cana.
It's so easy to read the Bible and not really read it.
For me I graze on the text and glaze over certain concepts or contexts unaware of their true interpretation and, thus, their true implication. I was reading a book recently that was retelling the amazing first miracle of Jesus, the turning of water into wine.
As I was following the familiar storyline, something the author pointed out just about knocked me over. He stated that each of the containers of wine contained nearly 30 gallons each and so when Jesus made the "great conversion", he supplied the wedding scene with approximately 908 bottles of wine. This would be several pallets of wine being delivered at the loading dock out back. Shocking and scandalous!
I don't know why this struck me so deeply, but I found myself wondering how many times something is happening in the Scripture and I'm standing afar struggling to really comprehend what is actually happening in the story. I wonder how many little nuggets like this I've driven by over the years that touch something "truer to life" inside of me. It was a great story before, don't get me wrong, but I felt I was missing a couple things that made it striking. Almost like watching a movie without the sound. The idea of 908 bottles of wine being produced by the Son of God at a party just messes with your idea of Jesus.
I need my idea of Jesus messed with on occasion. I think I've read all there is to read and know all there to know. I feel like I've traced him out and have him outlined. I can anticipate his next move, like completing my wife's sentences. I know him like the back of my hand. This is all, of course, bunk. It's just not true. But I get to believing it's so.
It was this little nuance at the wedding of Cana that caused pause inside me and asked me to look again. To double-take. Maybe I haven't cracked the code, maybe my best days are ahead of me and that God is wanting, now, to unlock little pockets of truth, like a locket with a hidden picture. Maybe my best days of reading the Bible are yet to come. This is exciting.
Who would have thought the number 908 could make such a difference?
I wonder if you think Jesus stingy and stuffy and I wonder if the idea of him backing up an 18-wheeler and dropping off 4 pallets of wine does anything for your heart? I know it messed with my constructs and categories. Beautifully so.