Week of May 12-18
A Miracle – Answer to a Mother’s Plea: do whatever he tells you.
Roberta Bailey, OSB, Benedictine Sisters of Florida
Jesus’ miracles have never stopped happening. Every moment of every day He pours himself into the empty jars of our lives. He is the good wine: extravagant, abundant, endless. We can’t understand how it happens. We don’t know how it happens. We only know that it does happen. We’ve experienced it and witnessed moments when death is turned into life, sorrow into joy, and despair into hope. We’ve been surprised when fear was transformed into courage and we’ve seen people do things they never thought possible. We’ve done what we thought was impossible! We’ve known moments when empty lives have been filled back up. We can almost hear Mary giving us a cue from the sidelines, "Do whatever he tells you."
When the wine runs out and you are confused—but others are looking for answers—do what Mary said, do whatever he tells you.
When the wine runs out, and troubles swirl about you, so your head is a muddle, do whatever he tells you.
When the wine runs out, and your “oomph” does, too, do whatever he tells you.
When the wine runs out, and you feel empty and still you struggle to be upbeat, do whatever he tells you.
When the wine runs out, when a loved one dies or a friendship withers, do whatever he tells you.
When good intentions don’t fill the void but only seem to pave the road to you-know-where, do whatever he tells you.
When prayers seem to go unheard—listen closely and do whatever he tells you.
When your illusion of self-sufficiency is shattered and your spirit is empty. When you shake your water jar and hear the sound of hollowness, don’t despair. Just do whatever he tells you.
When the day is a disaster, an embarrassment, a failure, grab your empty jar, fill it with the water of your tears and do whatever he tells you.
When the wine is running low, and no one else seems to notice, tell Him, and, then do whatever he tells you.
When self-doubt abounds and life seems meaningless, He is there. Do whatever he tells you.
When life lacks vibrancy and the future is colorless, fill the jar with the water of common life, not bottled water, not Dasani or Gatorade but the water of your everyday life, and do whatever he tells you.
When hope wears thin and faith is shaky, do whatever he tells you.
When you’re filled with guilt for deeds left undone and offenses given, bend your knee and bow your head and do whatever he tells you.
When you have more questions than answers, here’s an answer for any query: Do whatever he tells you.
When life is full of changes that threaten, lean into the One who is changeless, and do whatever he tells you.
When your best efforts fall short and your life-glass looks more than half-empty, breathe deeply and do whatever he tells you.
Remember the miracle during the wedding at Cana? Can you see Mary whispering to Jesus, “Son, they have no wine.” But they will. The miracle always begins when the wine gives out. Regardless of how it feels or what we think about it, the day the wine runs out is the beginning of a miracle. Christ does not simply refill our glasses. He transforms our lives, turning water into wine. That which was colorless becomes vibrant. That which had no taste now tingles the tongue. That which had no fragrance now has a full bouquet. Simply remember this—plant it in your heart: when the wine runs out, do whatever he tells you.
Sister Roberta Bailey is prioress of the Benedictine Sisters of Florida. Her experience ranges from Montessori infant care to college instructor and accreditation consultant. In her “spare” time she holds positions on boards for Saint Leo University, Pasco County domestic violence prevention programs, public school advisory committees, and the local Chamber of Commerce. Sister Roberta’s warm and inviting reflections are peppered with questions for each of us. Spend some time with her thoughts and questions and see where they lead you on your journey.