…will not save you without you.”
We had an excellent homily this morning. The priest hit the readings from a number of different angles, and, really could have expanded any one of those approaches into a meaty, extended-length homily on its own.
Of course, he started with the wedding feast imagery, found in the first reading (Isaiah 62:1-5) and gospel (John 2:1-11) for today, talking about how God participates in our happiness and joy. He moved on to the statement in the gospel that “the mother of Jesus was there.” He noted that John only mentions Mary in two places: here, at the beginning of Jesus’ ministry, and at the foot of the cross. Rather than suggesting that she was only present in those two places, John took special care to mention her at the beginning and at the cross because she was there throughout, which shows her special role as intercessor for us. She interceded at the wedding feast, and continues to do so today, as we see in all the Marian apparitions which point to what she said in the gospel, “Do whatever he tells you.”
He spent quite a bit of time on what happened next, that Jesus could simply have transformed the water, but did not. Instead, he relied on human action, the action of the waiters, to fill the jars, draw it out, and take it to the chief steward. Therefore, the quote for the title. God, who made us without us, will not save us without us. God invites us to participate in His life (just as He participates in ours) and asks us to take part in our own salvation. He offers, we need to accept. He will not compel us, but only invite us. Part of how we take part in His life is by making use of the gifts he gives us, as outlined in the second reading (1 Corinthians 12:4-11). He did not give us these gifts to keep them hidden, but rather to make use of them, to minister to others, and, by responding to His free gift of grace, grow in holiness so we can join Him in heaven.
Again, a really great homily, and I fail to do it justice with this summary.