overflowing abundance: water and wine

818 litres of water? or 1,090 bottles of wine?

One thousand and ninety bottles of wine, anyone? 

I remember once being (I confess) a little bored during a service when the wedding at Cana was the gospel reading. Six stone water jars, each containing 30 gallons. So, 180 gallons. Move that into litres and you get 818 (more or less). Divided by 75cl… Well, you can see the point. That’s quite a large delivery of wine, by most standards. Certainly enough to keep a wedding party going for a while longer! And remember – this is Roman-era wine. It was strong stuff, and had to be watered down to the right taste!

The old question, “Is your glass half full or half empty?” is, I think, a very pertinent one. Do we come from a perspective of lack, or of abundance?

I’d like to suggest that God comes from a point of abundance and goodness. After all – and it’s easily forgotten – after every section of creation in the Genesis story, God looks and says it is “good”. And after he creates humans, he says it is “very good”! 

So if that’s the way that God sees the world, why do we insist on seeing life and this world as so very negative and depressing?

I know life is not easy. And awful, terrible things happen every day. My own life has not been a bed of roses! But I have looked out for the daisies along the way each and every day. And usually, I find at least one. Sometimes a whole patch. And often I get surprised by incredible blessings and beauty. But if I wasn’t looking for those beautiful blessings, if I just tramped along head down looking at the mud, I might have missed each and every one. 

So if God doesn’t do half measures, why do we? If God can give us an overwhelming abundance, then are we prepared to see it and receive it? I know there are so many blessings and joys I would have missed in my life if I hadn’t been alert and looking out for the metaphorical sunshine to bring some warmth and lighten the muddy path. 

May you also find the sunshine, the flowers, and all the blessings that God is just waiting to offer to you, in between all the zoom calls, the tired eyes, the homeschooling, the endless hoovering, and all the other things that crowd into our lives. May you see that sparkle in the otherwise empty room of loneliness, boredom and “nothing to do”. 

Wherever you find yourself, may you be blessed.

Revd. Talisker