At the wedding feast in the little village of Cana, where Jesus’ mother had been invited (she may have been related to the wedding party, in such a small community), the hosts ran out of wine. Such a social blunder could be held against the family for a long time, in such a small community. Mary understood that kind of stigma – some people would not have forgotten that Mary’s own pregnancy was suspiciously brief – unless she was pregnant before she was married (and how the rumors can run rife, and linger, in such a small community!)
So when this need for help became obvious, and she told Jesus, “They have no more wine,” did she secretly hope that he would do something miraculous to prove to everyone who he really was? Some grand display that would put the old rumors to rest and announce to the village, “I kept my secret for all these years, not because I was ashamed, but because Jesus is so special”?
But Jesus wouldn’t do some showy demonstration of his amazing powers, even for his mother, because it wasn’t God’s time for him to show everyone who he was. It was time for a small miracle, which would quietly help his first disciples believe in him. And it helped the guests celebrate God’s blessing on this marriage.
We don’t always understand God’s timing or purposes as well as Jesus did, but we can pay attention to Him with a desire to know what he wants, and a willingness to do it. Even in a small community.