Collect and Readings for The Second Sunday of Epiphany – Isaiah, 62:1-5, Psalm 36: 5-10, 1 Corinthians 12:1-11, John 2:1-11
The Prayer for today Almighty God, in Christ you make all things new: transform the poverty of our nature by the riches of your grace, and in the renewal of our lives make known your heavenly glory; through Jesus Christ your Son our Lord, who is alive and reigns with you, in the unity of the Holy Spirit, one God, now and for ever. Amen.
In our readings this week the nature of our relationship with God is expressed in terms of marriage. Starting with our experience of the best in human love, we can use this to imagine the totally loving, totally faithful nature of our God. Really, of course, it is the other way round: being made in the likeness of God we share, in part, his capacity for faithfulness and loving which is often expressed in the decision to marry the object of our deep love and affection.
At a marriage celebration there is in many cultures a symbolic change of name, to signify that there has been a fundamental life change and that the two are now one. In a similar way God first loves us and chooses us, and then calls us onward into so changed a life in him that it is often referred to as being born again into a new life.
The passage from St Paul's first letter to the Corinthians explores how this new life in the Spirit manifests itself. Paul is anxious to make it clear that there is no rigid format for our new life. It is as varied and diverse as we are reflecting all the richness of individual gifts. But for all the differences there is a bond of unity, because all these gifts are expressions of the one Spirit. We can get ourselves unnecessarily worked up about the distribution of such gifts. If, instead, we keep our eyes on Jesus, the gifts can be received and valued wherever and however they happen to show up.
The transformation of our lives could not be shown more dramatically than in the Gospel event of the water being transformed into wine at the marriage in Cana. The ordinary is turned into the remarkable through contact with and obedience to the word, or Word, of God.
Some things to reflect on:
If not, what is holding you back?
God bless and stay safe and well
Rev'd Fiona Robinson