The chapel message began with a photo of a stuffy, serious, boring old teacher. And the speaker’s concern was: “Many of you think Jesus is like this guy.” The speaker meant well. He wanted to challenge young people who thought Jesus wanted them to sit down, shut up, and wipe the smile off their faces. He wanted kids to realize Jesus had a bigger vision than just taking off your hat during prayer time and memorizing the King James Bible.
So he told the story of Jesus turning water into wine and asked: “Is the Jesus in this story boring and strict?” It was a rhetorical question. The obvious answer was no. Jesus had created huge bottles of fine wine to keep a crowd of people celebrating at a 7-day wedding party! That is not the action of a killjoy. He didn’t come to rain on our parade but to throw us a parade.
Unfortunately, his point seemed to imply that Jesus likes to get people a little tipsy and have a good time—at least that is how all of my high schoolers understood it. Needless to say I was not pumped to have a spiritual authority insinuate that Jesus would bring 3 kegs to a party if he were here. That’s not the message a bunch of underage kids needed. But who could blame him? How else could you understand the character of a man who miraculously produced vats of alcohol for a party?