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so good morning friends how’s everyone doing today if you’re visiting my name is Alex I’m one of the pastors here it’s great to see the room full of people as far as social distancing allows so a little about my week uh so I woke up on Friday it’s my day off strolled out into the deck to look at the mountains all those things that I do now I live in Colorado with you guys only to hear the sound of running water now my instant reaction was wait you’re not in England anymore it doesn’t rain here I actually asked some guys I went disc golfing with Aaron and a couple of guys I said do you guys miss rain just doesn’t seem to do that anymore and so having lived in in a delightful sort of environment where I was in a parsonage and if there was ever a problem I just called somebody else my immediate reaction to this pouring water was well I need to call someone and then I realized I was now the person that I would call um which wasn’t good news so I spent the next 45 minutes becoming an expert on what I am now told are called pressure release valves um and impressively I fixed this myself for four dollars assuming it’s not pouring with water again now at home uh now here’s the thing if there’s any plumbers here I’m sorry I didn’t send any business your way but I just figured you know this was this was on me uh so

that was what my week started it was like all my weekended like but we’re not talking about that um yeah I agree I love having kids in the service so fun we’re going to jump into john chapter 2. so if you have a text feel free to open it it’s not going to come up on the screen to start with we’ll go through it bit by bit a little later on but right now I’m just going to read it for you so we started in this book john last week we’re going to do the first four chapters we’re not going to go completely verse by verse so those of you that love that verse by verse my new detail thing we have the daily things for those uh it would be very difficult to get through every single verse over five weeks so we’re gonna jump down from part way through chapter one and we’re gonna start in on chapter two if you are completely new to church maybe you’re watching a video someone sent you maybe you turned up because you just turned up john is one of four stories of Jesus life now there’s Matthew mark Luke and john they all tell it in slightly different ways and john is this this one that goes into some of these rich details that I just love dropping in on so here we go before we run into it lets pray God we believe as followers of Jesus that you breathed on this book and it came alive God we’re asking now

would you breathe into us make us alive in new ways pull things out of us that are messy ugly replacing with good we thank you that in Jesus all things are made new and we’re excited to see newness and life in this text amen on the third day a wedding took place at Cana in galilee Jesus mother was there and Jesus and the disciples had also been invited to the wedding when the wine was gone Jesus mother said to him they have no more wine mother woman why do you involve me Jesus replied my hour has not yet come his mother said to the servants do whatever he tells you nearby six stone water jars the kind used by the Jews for ceremonial washing each holding from 20 to 30 gallons Jesus said to the servants fill the jars with water so that they may be fur so they are filled to the brim then he told them now draw some out and take it to the master of the banquet they did so and the master of the banquet tasted the water that had been turned into wine he did not realize where it had come from though the servants who had drawn it new then he called the bridegroom aside and said everyone brings out the choice wine first than the cheaper wine after the guests have had too much to drink but you have saved the best until now what Jesus did there in Cana of galilee was the first of the signs

through which he revealed his glory and his disciples believed in him the bible asks us to take seriously this idea that Jesus took water and he turned it into wine and that is the cheapest parlor trick you will ever see in church my daughter said to me like what if it doesn’t work that’s going to be really embarrassing for you isn’t it I said well it could be embarrassing anyway Jesus took water and he turned it into wine now do not drink this uh just a warning to you no one come up here and try and grab an early morning glass of wine but the reaction there of like whoa I need to figure that out is exactly the reaction of the first followers of Jesus exactly the reaction of the wedding guests at least the ones that knew there’s this sense of like where did that come from the book john the second chapter asks us to take seriously the idea that the divine will interfere in the normal pattern of things the divine will interfere into the normal pattern of things if you want to write something like that down that is maybe a good working I don’t know if this is working maybe I have to turn it on or something like that I’m going to slick it slickly move it there we go the divine entering the into the world to actively work around or against the laws that govern our reality the truth is when the wine is gone the wine is gone and yet with Jesus present that doesn’t seem to be the case anymore there’s an argument that you

can make that this other than the resurrection is the greatest miracle that Jesus will perform every other miracle is based around and Jesus became very well known as a miracle worker every other miracle is based around a couple of things it’s about taking something that has become warped and damaged and repairing it someone goes lame and Jesus it miraculously makes that limb work again someone was born blind the function of growing in the womb didn’t happen as it should have done and Jesus kind of starts that process again and makes it work but this one this is a little different right for years people even wise theologians have maybe read this miracle a little bit wrong a famous writer a kind of rock star theologian from the fourth and fifth century Augustine he said all Jesus does here is speed up the natural process but does he doesn’t have grapes doesn’t have anything just has water and the bible asks us to take seriously that water didn’t just become wine it became the best wine so we’re going to track through the series as I said I’ve outlined for you last week we’re calling it did you see that the idea is that sometimes there’s the story and then sometimes there’s the thing behind the story and then sometimes there’s the thing behind the thing behind the story unless

we know what we’re looking for unless we’re aware of some of the contexts unless we’re aware of some of the history we might be just missing huge chunks of what’s actually happening this is this idea that sometimes you blink and sometimes you missed it so we’re going to spend this time looking sort of deep into these things this is maybe a little illustration that helps you understand this this is grant a cats he is one of the best chefs in the world he appeared on the scene in 2003 and his cooking was just revolutionary he opened a restaurant in a linear way for a mere 280 you can sit down to 22 courses each paired with wine but this guy in in his style was just revolutionary and what he said he wanted to do was this he wanted to turn food into a a form of theater so he wanted you to eat and to not be aware of what was going on around you until the thing sort of jumped up in front of you so an example of how this works is this you’ll sit down and a table host will bring you to your seat and as you’re sitting there a basket of fruits and different foods will lower from the ceiling and then someone will bring out a piece of fire they’ll place a fire on the table cooking and burning in front of you and you’ll take these bits of fruits like marshmallows and things and you take them and you’ll cook them over the fire for

yourself and you’re absorbed in this theater and these different tastes and what’s going on around you and then finally a table host will come over and they’ll take away the fire when you’re finished with this course place it on the table next to you and break it apart and inside this fire is a chicken thigh wrapped in foil and he’s been cooking in front of you the entire time and you’ve been completely unaware of it I would suggest that there’s times when we read specifically john but also other new testament writers other old testament writers these writers they’re doing something under the surface that we’re not even aware of they’re to take that analogy they’re cooking in front of us and we don’t even know it’s happening and then there’s the moment where the thing comes to life it jumps out and we’re like oh that’s what they were talking about that’s the thing those are har moments or what make the new testament come alive it’s oh that was the thing all along and so as we go through this book on this book john I’m hoping you see those all the time I’m hoping they jump out to you and as you would expect this one is no different so here we go let’s go back to the text on the third day a wedding took place at Cana in galilee Jesus mother was there and Jesus and his disciples had also been invited to

the wedding so weddings in the first century bc a.d were a huge deal seven days of feasting and celebration over a wedding a wedding was a massive deal and Jesus and his followers have gone a pretty good distance to this wedding sometimes we forget that this is a context where there’s no cars very few people have beasts of burden or anything like that so they have been hanging out somewhere maybe in this sort of lakey region on the right that’s called the sea of galilee or maybe somewhere very down at the south and this is probably where caner is so they’ve walked this seven miles to this celebration man I would have to really like someone to walk seven miles but you guys are Coloradans you’re hikers you’d walk anywhere for you know seven miles another seven hours is nothing to you guys uh 24 kilometers I’m gonna have to convert that for you guys because of course you don’t do kilometers over here uh so around 15 16 miles and so they’ve made this huge journey across to this wedding and you expected something when you turned up to a wedding this was so ingrained in the culture of the day that like when you went to a wedding it was like ah I’m expecting something good and then this line gets thrown in which to us in our 21st century mindset doesn’t seem that big a deal when the

wine was gone Jesus mother said to him they have no more wine I’ve been to weddings run out of wine all the time it’s not reasonable surely to keep giving people endless supplies of wine especially if you’re paying for it as the host why would you expect that at all it just seems unreasonable but to a first century ad person to run out of wine was the end of joy it meant that every part of the wedding that had been worth celebrating up till now that sort of like that celebration that had been building every single bit of energy was now sucked from the building a wedding that ended up with no wine would be remembered forever as the wedding that ended up with no wine imagine yourself in that situation imagine how a couple would feel to be that couple that were talked about that were laughed about all over town this wasn’t an environment where there were all these different activities going on social events were the activities of the day they were the football games of the day they were the baseball games of the day and to end up with know why meant that this would be the thing that was talked about this isn’t just a throwaway statement oh they’ve run out of wine this is a disaster think about that in atoms I’ve been at a couple of weddings where I’ve sort of seen almost impending

disaster I’ve actually been involved in impending disaster as well my brother’s wedding a couple of years ago I was the best man I got to give a speech and all those kind of things and as we’re sitting eating I’m just not feeling good and I start to look at the people around me Laura is sat next to me and I don’t want to say anything because you know it’s my brother’s wedding I’m like is it is it just me or is the food here not good have they done a really bad job with a catering and my wife looked at me she’s like no the food’s wonderful and that was the moment where I knew something could be a problem and so I sort of managed to stumble through the best man speech and all those kind of things and we got that part done and then a guy came over to me I’d made friends with him over the weekend and he knew I was a pastor and he heard me give the address at the wedding and he said to me you know what I uh I’d love to talk to you about just spiritual stuff I’ve just got this feeling that there’s something in the world and I’d love to kind of just get down and figure out what it was and as a pastor that’s like gold like how often does that happen no one ever asks us that question they just they just don’t it’s like no I’d really love to get down to these deep details I’m thinking about who Jesus is and all these kind of

things and in that moment something like there starts to move and I just looked at him I said Glenn I would love to have this conversation with you another time and I just darted as quick as I could to the bathroom and the normal order of things followed you know talking on the big white phone or whatever we call that these days and this just was so close to being that disastrous moment that could have been the speech that could have been like half an hour 20 minutes earlier unfortunately by some grace or something in the universe I I got through it okay but we all know those moments in weddings that are truly terrible that maybe the pinnacle is the one where the priest or pastor will say if anyone has any objection to this ceremony raise your hand or forever hold your peace and every time even if I’m not really involved I have this moment of like please nobody put your hand up just let’s just let it go they we understand what social embarrassment means we understand what the worst thing that can happen at a wedding is and there’s probably a load of others that you’ve either seen or imagined or different things this for someone in the first century ad this was it this was as bad as it could get they have no more why now to get into some of the weeds of this a second like that maybe

causes some tension for us all sorts of different backgrounds here some of you have been in church since like year dot since you can remember some of you are fairly new to church in the western church we have a pretty uncomfortable relationship with wine alcohol all those different things there’s a tension there right and tension’s not bad tension is actually a really great place for us to learn Jewish people managed this tension really well they were really comfortable with the idea that wine had a purpose but it wasn’t like the end goal they were okay with these two concepts sort of running together woe to those who rise early in the morning that they may run after strong drink who tarry late into the evening as wine inflames them and then also the second concept from a different part of the old testament he makes grass grow for the cattle and plants for people to cultivate bringing forth food from the earth and wine that gladdens human hearts two completely different ideas right woe to this person and then at the same time wine gladdens humans hearts the rabbis had this saying uh drunkenness is a disgrace but without wine there is no joy so for all of us in this room all over the place there’s different reactions maybe right some of us are like I’m just not comfortable I

know someone who’s been through addiction we have this celebrate recovery program that we absolutely love and I’m so excited that south is involved in that and we recognize that there’s this real sense that alcohol is dangerous when it’s out of control that it can be this huge problem and yet for thousands of years people have had this idea that wine brings joy as well uh this incredible uh photo photographer from brazil uh Marco Alberti decided to take pictures of the weight of life on his friends so he would drag them in after work and say I want to take a picture of you and just see how the day has affected you and then I want to give you a glass of wine and I want to have you drink it and then I want to take another picture and just for that illustrated thing just look and this isn’t me saying you should go out and drink wine this is me isn’t me saying if you have a problem you should go drink it or any of those things but just look at the difference these are people that come in from their day and feel weight and for whatever reason the next picture casts a completely different expression so this is the tension we’re talking about right there is a genuine sense that wine brings joy that sitting and enjoying a glass with friends has a joyfulness to it and yet it is also on the other side this dangerous thing and

we can’t avoid that tension we embrace it and accept it for some reason at this wedding the fact that they had run out of wine was a disaster and we are going to watch as Jesus not only produces wine but he produces lots and lots of wine when you read the text what we’ll see in a second is that Jesus will take these huge ceremonial parts it says that there are about 30 gallons each and he’ll turn these into the best wine 30 gallons is about the amount of water that you will put into a bath to take a bath and Jesus produces eight of them in our modern day understanding of wine bottles that’s 800 bottles of the finest wine you could imagine that causes me some tension Jesus gives these guests that have been drinking for seven for three days and says here’s another 800 bottles I don’t know that I actually know what to do with that and we’ll get there in a second but there’s this moment where it looks like the miracle won’t happen at all there’s this moment where Jesus uh mother will come to him and he’ll say woman why do you involve me Jesus replied my hour has not yet come people have struggled with the way that Jesus addresses his mother there it’s not particularly a nice way of talking to her it’s not the very English mummy it’s not dear woman it’s not my lovely mother it’s woman why are

you why are you telling me what to do so there’s a thing going on here under the surface that this is what’s called a literally literary purpose so he’s it’s this he’s setting something up in lots of Jewish stories there was this idea that a man would grow up and he would separate himself from his mother’s influence so this is what john is doing here he’s talking about this moment where Jesus has become his own man he’s now 30 you started his own ministry and now she’s come to him and said you can fix this situation my question there is like is what has she seen what has she seen in him over those years that he’s grown up that says this situation that’s a disaster you can do something about it now if you’ve read the new testament you know that there’s these promises that she’s heard when he was a little boy he would go to the temple and people would say oh this child is going to be the savior of Israel he’s going to do all these incredible things but she must have seen something that says this is a problem that he can fix and for a moment this thing just hovers with this tension she’s made a request and he on the surface said not ready to do anything not ready to step out the thing is coming but I’m not ready right now it’s this hovering moment of like ah will the thing happen at all and she just

with this beautiful confidence I think is on the slide before she just says to the servants do whatever do whatever he tells you somewhere there’s this maternal instinct that says it’s going to be fine he’s not going to leave them hanging it’s going to be okay and then we see the miracle nearby stood six stone water jars the kind used by Jews for ceremonial washing each holding from 20 to 30 gallons Jesus said to the servants fill the jars with water so they filled them to the brim then he told them now draw some out and take it to the master of the banquet they did so and the master of the banquet tasted the water that had been turned into wine he did not realize where it had come from though the servants who had drawn the water knew then he called the bridegroom aside everybody brings out the choice wine first and then the cheaper wine after the guests have had too much to drink but you have saved the best until now again what he’s not saying there is that everybody there was wasted uh he’s not saying that at all like and again they’re comfortable with his tension wine is to be celebrated drunkenness at a wedding would have been a disgrace what he means is that after three days of drinking different types of wine you just kind of like I don’t even know what wine tastes like

anymore it just has this just standard wine flavor so the best wine would come first when people still had what they would call a discerning palette and then slowly they would bring out the cheaper stuff and then this is all flipped with Jesus he’s created this miracle this wedding is now going to be known as the wedding where in this incredible display of generosity after three days of giving wine the host said actually I’ve got 800 bottles that are even better in a society that was built unlike reciprocal giving every other person holding a wedding would be terrified to hold a wedding now what am I going to have to produce to keep up with the guy that produced 800 bottles out of nowhere when we had this moment that we thought the wine was gone he said suddenly no I have more to give you this wedding instead of going down in history as a disaster will go down as in history as the wedding that no other wedding could ever compare to and that maybe leads us into what’s really going on here because I don’t think this story is really just about wine at all again they’re very comfortable with attention wine has good points and bad points but Jesus didn’t do this just for the why there’s this whole other story this undercurrent that I want us to pick out for a second so here we go back in the chapter that we

looked at last week john chapter one we talked about how john has this incredible nerve to take Jesus and to place him in john in in genesis chapter one he talks about Jesus in the same way that genesis chapter one will talk about God who created the earth he puts Jesus right there at the beginning and that would have been a tension for Jewish people and then john wall land us in another tension as well because now he’s going to compare Jesus to this figure Moses that looms in their past as the guy that delivered or God used to deliver their nation and for the rest of john chapter one that’s what john does he starts to talk about this idea out of his fullness we have all received grace in place of grace already given for the law was given through Moses grace and truth came from Jesus Christ no one has ever seen God but the one and only son who is himself God and his in closest relationship with the father has made him known the whole of john will take Moses and Jesus and constantly compare them with this constant theme over and over again Moses was fine in actual fact he was incredible he was good but Jesus is something different to give you a sense of the tension for a Jewish people imagine if I had arrived here last week and stood on stage after the worship and said something like this

you guys have spent the last like 40 something years as a community worshiping Jesus I’ve got a better idea now it’s going to be about me you’re just going to spend the next however many years worshiping me instead I’m going to take Jesus out of the center central focus I’m going to put myself there this is at its core what this chapter is doing it’s saying we have talked about Moses and how God has used him as the prophet the guy for centuries and now you’re going to take Moses out and say no no we’re going to do that maybe me is a bad example because I’m so human maybe I put Billy graham in there for you cory evangelicals or something like that there’s that does that sense of like what do you mean you’re going to take Moses out and put yourself in that place and I would suggest to you that all that we’re going to see through john is this constant reflection of like well Moses was fine but now there’s this new thing that’s happening this Jesus story goes beyond all of that this story about turning water into wine there’s only one thing in the whole of the old testament new testament that compares to it at all as this moment where the children of Israel this group of Jewish people leave Egypt they’ve been in captivity for hundreds of years and then through the series of miracles the pharaoh will

decide to let them go and this is one of those miracles Moses and Aaron did as the lord commanded in the sight of pharaoh in the sight of his servants he lifted up the staff and struck the water in the Nile and all the water in the Nile turned into blood and the fish in the Nile died and the Nile stank so that the Egyptians could not drink water from the Nile there was blood throughout all the land of Egypt Moses takes water and he turns it into blood and God incredibly uses this narrative to take these children of Israel out of Egypt and they leave as this group and all these other people follow them it’s called an era of raven in Hebrew it’s like this mixed up messy multitude of people it’s like they said to all the outsiders hey if you want to leave too just come with us and suddenly this group that was about 600 000 maybe suddenly become something more like a couple of million and they just wander out into the desert and it is miraculous it is this world-changing event and then along comes Jesus and he says I’m going to turn water into wine and then everyone reading retrospectively would read it in the light of oh yeah but what happened at easter at easter he sat around with his earliest followers and he handed them a cup and he said this wine what does it represent this represents my blood and

this isn’t just about deliverance from Egypt it’s about deliverance from everything think about those songs that we tapped into earlier those songs that talked about the idea of the defeat of death that death no longer has a hold on me this is what Jesus is beginning to do now his hour may not yet have come he may not be ready for that final thing that final thing that says that death is over but this is like a hint of it this is like the thing is coming every single thing that Jesus is doing here isn’t about wine at a wedding it isn’t about whether wine is good or bad this thing here is about a new kingdom that he’s on the doorstep the thing is about to happen and Jesus in this cred incredible way kind of like signals just keep waiting just keep waiting this is going to change everything this is like a classic messianic promise text from back in the old testament think about this in light of turning water into wine on this mountain the lord almighty will prepare a feast of rich food for all peoples a banquet of aged wine the best of meats and the finest of wines on this mountain he will destroy the shroud that enfolds all peoples the sheep that covers all nations he will swallow up death forever Jesus is hinting that the thing is coming is the defeat of death will be done with for good this isn’t about getting out

of Egypt this is about changing everything that we know about the way the world works and if you’re unfamiliar with this Jesus story this this is what you’re invited into death doesn’t have to have a hold anymore this new kingdom is come Jesus chose death as his weapon to defeat death isn’t that the bizarre story you could conjure up there is a new kingdom coming what Jesus did here in Canaan of galilee was the first of the signs through which he revealed his glory and his disciples believed in him this is this moment where they’re like oh we’re not just following the rabbi that we talked about last week last week for those either here we talked about so much of what Jesus did is just common rabbi stuff he grabs a group of followers and says spend some time with me and eventually you’ll go and be rabbis yourself and suddenly they’re like wait for something bigger here this is this idea this is this new kingdom coming and so a question that occurs to me is this what is a kingdom and this is where we’ll land a couple of questions for you I always feel that there’s this tension as an English person I feel like I really understand kingdoms really well and I feel like living amongst you guys you guys kind of hate them um so here is her majesty the queen I did see the other day just as an interesting note that Meghan Markle who is married to prince harry for those who are unfamiliar with royalty

and stuff like that was says she would seriously like to run for president one day and you may feel all different sort of things about that and that’s fine but I would say that would be the greatest long game in the world by king George iii back hundreds of years is like do you know what generations down one of our guys will marry one of your guys and everything will go back to the way it was the revolution is over people um impressive 4d chess uh by king George the third there but this is what we’re talking about when we talk about kingdom uh on the surface it’s about rulership it’s about ownership and because the word kingdom has become problematic people have started to sketch out some other words that we might use instead of kingdom because we don’t necessarily connect especially in very strongly democratic nations with this idea of what is a kingdom so another word that people have used is things like the ecosystem of God or one I love is the influence of God the idea of the kingdom coming is that one day God’s influence will be over everything now on some big spatial level that is always already the case if God can turn water into wine if he can break the norms then it already is everywhere but it seems like right now he chooses not to make that the case that there’s this

idea that one day the kingdom will come and it will its rain will be over everything and all the things that we look at in the world and say ah it shouldn’t be that way we’ll be reversed there will be enough food for everybody we won’t have a billion people that are suffering from food shortages every day in this world there will be enough water we won’t have 700 million people that can’t get clean drinking water in the world today we won’t see all these things about the world that we look and say that isn’t how God would have it be there’s this promise that one day that will be Jesus talked about it as something that was coming then an even post-death post-resurrection isn’t there still that sense for us that like ah we’re not there yet when I think about the kingdom I think about this for those that ever have traveled much this is uh the salgrada familia in barcelona it was designed by an artist called gaudi it’s still not finished centuries after we began it and you look at this building and you’re like oh this thing is stunning it is a thing of beauty it is a work of art and when it’s captured with the skyline and a rainbow behind it just adds to it when the sun hits it this may be one of the most beautiful buildings created and then yet there’s ways when you get up close and you see what it’s supposed to

look like that you’re like but it’s not finished it’s clearly not done yet isn’t that what we’re talking about when we’re talking about the kingdom we see this thing that Jesus has done and he has begun and it is beautiful and it is incredible and yet for every single one of us there’s ways that we’re like oh it’s not done yet there’s something more to happen this world isn’t the kingdom yet and we wait and we wait and we wait and it seems like a slow kingdom coming and yet the promise of the water into wine is the same as the promise of death to resurrection that says the kingdom will come it is an inevitability it won’t be stopped when Jesus was asked to talk about that he said oh the gates of hell the biggest defensive structure you can imagine not stopping it it’s coming it’s just a matter of time it is an inevitability the kingdom will come but now we wait and we wait and we wait but then there’s a question that I would love to leave us with in amongst our waiting because I think the idea of the kingdom lands best when we start to talk about but what is your kingdom and what a south is our kingdom you see this kingdom really won’t accept any other kingdom having its own sort of sense of influence authority it asks that every other kingdom every other sphere of influence is bought under this

kingdom and that’s what I think each of us does when we decide to follow Jesus we say that we long to bring our kingdom under your influence we long to bring our own personal thing under what you’re doing Jesus and so my question for each of us and for us as a community is what happens to our kingdom now you have an influence the smallest child here has an influence it has he has a group of friends building those relationships they have influence over you in different ways and they’re asked to use that influence you guys you kids aged six seven eight nine ten you’re asked to bring that influence under the kingdom that means that how you treat someone matters and you get to choose whether in your own small world of influence you continue to build towards this kingdom and you continue to structure your life in a way that this kingdom would dream of when you employ someone and you get to design what their life looks like you get to bring your realm of influence into this kingdom when we as a church community start to think about how we engage in mission how we engage in outreach we get to think about how we are building the kingdom and there’s so many ways for us to dream there this is an organization I got to work with over the last five years it was started by a lady

who went out to Haiti with a very small realm of influence she didn’t know any French she didn’t know any Haitians and she wanted to adopt a child and so she went and they told her well you can but in two years time and so she decided this she decided well I’m going to stay I’m going to stay here in Haiti and just decide to do whatever I can I’m going to live with this child I’m going to adopt them now and I can’t leave the country that’s fine and so she began to work and she started to see that one of the things that Haitians needed more than anything was they needed jobs so many people in Haiti are unemployed the theory is if you can create a job for one Haitian person you’re probably supporting 10 other Haitians and especially there is a problem that for guys there’s a culture that says if I can’t get a job I’m just going to stay home and I’m going to drink and do nothing and so for all these women all over Haiti there’s this this tension of being the breadwinners and yet also being the primary care for their kids and for the home and so what Shelley did is this she said you know what if I can create jobs for women I’m going to change part of Haiti so she started to create this environment where women could come and they could work and there was daycare provided for the kid and she now this woman

who walked into Haiti with no influence whatsoever whose realm was smaller than you can imagine she now employs 700 Haitian women who are probably employing seven thousand supporting seven thousand other Haitians this is what using your influence for the kingdom looks like it doesn’t matter if you feel like it’s small it doesn’t matter if south is at the moment an insignificant church in the middle of a city in the middle of America we have this ability to influence all over the world because God takes small things and he makes them big he takes things like turning water into a wine at a wedding and says this is a metaphor for changing everything about the way the world works this story isn’t about water into wine it’s about life change and what happens when we as a group of people take our influence and we use it everywhere around us and this kingdom incredibly and I’m going to invite the worship team to come back up this kingdom comes to people who don’t deserve it who sometimes don’t even know that it happened there’s no evidence in this story that we just read that this couple ever knew that there was a problem ever knew what Jesus did for them ever knew that a miracle took place suddenly there is wine when there was no wine but they maybe never knew and

never knew how to thank this kingdom comes free of charge no strings attached on the house it comes with tension because sometimes it comes to people that we feel don’t deserve it and it skips over people that we feel do deserve it and yet this kingdom one day will cover everything and that is an inevitability it’s just a matter of time but as we as a group of people wait the question to leave you with this week is what does your kingdom look like what does your influence look like will you allow God to transform your heart and to begin to build his kingdom here by surrendering your own kingdom to him I’d like to invite you to stand with me for just a second we’re going to close worshiping together again God each of us has influence and yet I’m aware that for some of us right now we feel maybe like that couple our influence our specific area feels like this small thing where the wine is all gone the joy is disappearing it’s vacuum sucked out it doesn’t feel like we’re flourishing right now God would you bring joy and grace into our hearts in this moment as we worship together would you remind us that we’re going to be okay would you remind us that your kingdom promise that starts with this silly little thing of turning water into wine speaks to a way bigger thing that you’ve changed everything about the

way the world works for those amongst us that are still figuring out what is this faith thing who is the Jesus would you become real to them in this moment would this big space become just oh so small and would they know that the creator of the universe cares about them for whatever we have in our lives that needs transforming in whatever ways that feels impossible God may we see that with you nothing is impossible for those amongst us that are sick that come in limping would you bring new health and would you bring courage to deal with whatever he’s been dealt with God this world doesn’t look like your kingdom all the time right now but we see your kingdom as this beautiful thing we choose to surrender our kingdoms to your big kingdom thank you Jesus amen