Good Advice

6 Feb

“Don’t argue. Don’t pout! Just…Do what I tell you to do!” Got it?

Those are familiar words to a few of us. Remember when your Mom or Dad said that, or something very similar? Well, with a slight modification, that’s what Mary, the mother of Jesus, said to the servant staff at the wedding party in Cana long ago. Mary was giving them some very clear instruction, and some very valuable advice. “Do whatever he tells you to do.” The “he” in question is her son, Jesus, and the setting is the wedding celebration where the wine vat ran dry and thirsty guests wanted refills. The servants didn’t know what to do, and it wasn’t their responsibility to keep the party rolling.

“Just do whatever he tells you to do.” And, as we know from John’s Gospel account, Jesus called for six empty water jars, had the servants fill each to the brim with water, and presented the jars to the host who sampled the liquid and pronounced it the best wine he had ever tasted. This is a powerful story on several levels, but I suggest we don’t lose sight of the wonderful advice because of the wonderful wine.

Do you think your life might be slightly different if you followed Mary’s good advice. “Do whatever he tells you to do.” Don’t whine. Don’t try to negotiate or compromise. For sure, don’t ignore. What’s the point of being a Follower if I don’t follow? The value in reading His teachings, closing the book, and then doing what I want to, anyway? We acknowledge that Jesus is the person who most truly reveals the nature and purposes of God. We use words like “incarnate” and “presence” to describe our limited grasp of who he was and is. Mary knows! And she’s giving us some very good advice. Just do what he tells you to do. You don’t have to agree. Just do it.

Naïve? I don’t think so. It’s called Trust, or Faith, if you wish. So when he says: Love your neighbor, then love your neighbor. Feed the poor…then feed. Comfort the sick…comfort. Forgive your enemy…then forgive. The basic assumption is that the incarnation of the Creator in human flesh may know more than we know. May even have better solutions to the world’s ills than we do.

Good advice. Do whatever he tells you to do.

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