Read John 2:1-12

The steward called the bridegroom and said to him, “Everyone serves the good wine first, and then the inferior wine after the guests have become drunk. But you have to keep the good wine until now.”—John 2:9-10 (NRSV)

While hiking deep in the woods of Yosemite National Park we had become lost, and with dusk approaching we had no clue how to get back to our tent. We would have asked for directions, but we hadn’t seen any other hikers. This told us that we must be pretty far off any regularly used path. We were feeling frustrated and fearful when finally we saw a wooden sign with an arrow that read, “Yosemite Valley, 2.4 miles.” With a surge of energy and relief, we raced back to our campsite in the valley.

Signs and signals are everywhere in life: directional signs on trails, caution signs on the roads, alerts on our phones, or indicator lights in our cars. The purpose of any sign is to alert us to something beyond the sign itself. In John’s Gospel, Jesus’ miracles are called signs, and the first is in Cana at a wedding. The party has run out of wine, but Jesus turns large vats of water into the best wine.

When we saw the wooden sign on our hike we felt joy, not because of the sign itself but because we now knew how to get back to our campsite. When Jesus changes water into wine, the best part of this story is not the miracle itself; it’s what the sign points to—salvation through Christ. And we don’t have to hike miles to get to Christ. When we call out in faith, he will answer.

Prayer: Dear God, thank you for the signs that point the way to you. Help us to follow you faithfully. Amen.

Thought for the day: Jesus’ miracles point us to salvation.

—Adam Benson, North Carolina