And when they wanted wine, the mother of Jesus saith unto him, They have no wine.
His mother saith unto the servants, Whatsoever he saith unto you, do it.
Jesus saith unto them, Fill the waterpots with water. And they filled them up to the brim.
And he saith unto them, Draw out now, and bear unto the governor of the feast. And they bare it.
When the ruler of the feast had tasted the water that was made wine, and knew not whence it was: (but the servants which drew the water knew;) the governor of the feast called the bridegroom,
And saith unto him, Every man at the beginning doth set forth good wine; and when men have well drunk, then that which is worse: but thou hast kept the good wine until now.
Jesus saith unto them, Fill the waterpots with water. And they filled them up to the brim
The ruler of the feast tasted the water that was made wine
I have mentioned previously that God is able to use us in ways that exceed our capabilities, we do not have to wait until we are perfect before we can serve a role in His kingdom. But…we do need to provide Him something to work with.
Jesus did not make wine out of thin air, he ordered that the empty pots be filled with water first. He did not make enough food to feed 5,000 out of nothing either, he gathered what fish and bread was available, and then made do with it. Elisha did not bless sheer emptiness to produce the ceaseless oil, he expanded the output of one pot that already held some. Moses couldn’t speak eloquently…but he could speak. Peter did not know how to fish for men…but he did know how to fish.
God is similarly not going to wield you out of nothing either. Meaning that while you do not have to be perfect, you do need to be trying. He expects you to put forth what little you can, even if it is only a pot of water or a few little fishes. He can work with that and expand it to meet the need.
No man putteth a piece of new cloth unto an old garment, for that which is put in to fill it up taketh from the garment, and the rent is made worse.
Neither do men put new wine into old bottles: else the bottles break, and the wine runneth out, and the bottles perish: but they put new wine into new bottles, and both are preserved.
No man putteth a piece of new cloth unto an old garment, for the rent is made worse
Neither do men put new wine into old bottles: else the bottles break, and the wine runneth out
Jesus was here describing two everyday phenomena in the ancient Jewish world. Patches of new clothing then, as now, would shrink after getting wet. Therefore, if one patched an old garment with unshrunken cloth, then after the first washing it would shrink and the original hole would be made even worse.
Also, new wine expands during the fermentation process. Bottles were made from animal skins, and old ones were not elastic enough to handle the expansion of the wine and would burst. Bottles made from new skins would be able to flex and stay preserved.
I never understood these passages until I decided to finally make time for God in my life. As I looked at my daily schedule I found that I had filled it to the brim with other things. There wasn’t any room for God. I tried to shove Him in anyway and things started to tear and burst. Important things on my to-do list were being left undone, I wasn’t maintaining a healthy balance, and my life was unsustainable.
Eventually I realized that I had get myself some new bottles. I went to my calendar and took everything out, brought it back to a clean slate. Then I added things back in one-at-a-time, this time starting with God. In the end not everything was able to get back into my schedule, some things had to be let go.
Make no mistake about it, choosing to prioritize God is going to disrupt your life. Not everything that you do now is going to carry through. But I do promise you that the change will be worth it. You will be filled with new wine and clothed in new robes, and they will feel right to you.