Before the Miracle

I close my eyes, enter into my imagination, 
and arrive at the wedding in Cana.

I take it all in–
joyful chatter
olives and garlicky hummus
dangling earrings and earnest faces
freshly baked bread and wafts of perfume
the earthen goblet in my hand.

Who am I in this story?

Not the mother who expresses a need and gets her wish.
Not the servants who are given a job and are the first to know.
Not the surprised master,
Or the relieved groom.

When my prayer time’s over,
I still don’t know.

The next morning, 
I close my eyes to pray and return to the wedding.
Eventually, I find myself at the point in the story
when all the wine’s gone. 
I’m sitting alone 
with an empty cup in my hand.

I see myself stuck there
in that airless,
endless moment
before the miracle.

no longer water
and not yet wine.

Where are You? 

Sadness wells up, catches in my throat.
I breathe slowly
and wait.

I’m right here, You say. 


Where can I go from your Spirit?
    Where can I flee from your presence?
If I go up to the heavens, you are there;
    if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.

Psalm 139:7-8 (NIV)

∗ ∗ ∗

Love Mischief for the World

Coming Home:
Turning Toward and Lingering in Love’s Embrace 

A Silent Ignatian Lenten Retreat

Join spiritual directors Jan Evans and Esther Hizsa for a silent, guided prayer retreat opening to the desire to encounter God personally and live and grow in freedom using Ignatian prayer practices such as Lectio Divina, Gospel Contemplation (Praying with your imagination) and Prayer of Examen.

March 24-26, 2023  Online

TIME: Friday, 6pm PT (9 pm ET) to Sunday, noon PT (3 pm ET)

Register here.

“Surrendering to love leads to an unexpected place,
where yieldedness to God frees us to become who God created us to be.”
 David Benner

What love mischief are you and God doing for the world?
Let me know and I will include it in an upcoming post.

Credits and References:
The Wedding at Cana by Frans Francken the Younger, c. 1618–20, Nationalmuseum, Stockholmr, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
Poem “Before the Miracle” by Esther Hizsa, 2023.
Water into Wine, Saint James the Greater Catholic Church (Concord, North Carolina) Author: Nheyob, Wikimedia Commons
Return of the Prodigal Son, Rembrandt Harmensz van Rijn – Public Domain
© Esther Hizsa, An Everyday Pilgrim, 2023.
The unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without permission from Esther Hizsa is prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used provided there is a link to the original content and credit is given as follows: © Esther Hizsa, An Everyday Pilgrim 2013-2023.

About Esther Hizsa

Esther is a spiritual director and writer. She lives in Burnaby with her husband, Fred, and they have two grown children and two grandchildren.
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