Canaan of Galilee: what does this place teach to us?Caterina Milo | September 6, 2017
In a previous post, I described the uniqueness of my pilgrimage to the Holy Land. Such a trip has indeed meant the chance to explore my interior life and to gain new insights to help in my path of faith. In this article I will deepen my analysis with a reflection on Canaan of Galilee, one of the places that had a significant impact on me.
In Canaan, Jesus performed his first miracle. During a wedding when the wine was running low, Jesus changed water into wine at his mother’s request.
The wine in Scripture is a sign of fullness and celebration. It is also sign of the fullness of life in the search for happiness that comes from Above.
In this Holy place, every pilgrim faces a series of questions. Where do I search for my happiness? Do I search for it merely in the human, fragile, rewards? Do I long for something deeper which only God can give?
This miracle gives us all a new perspective. “Every little human action is crucial, but is not an end in itself. Every human action longs for something more. We long for a fullness that only God’s Grace can give. It is the power of Grace, which is able to change our daily “waters” into wine. Then, it is the courage to long and ask for something more that gives meaning to our lives.
More crucially, Canaan gives a broader meaning to the sacrament of marriage. The background of Jesus’ first miracle is a wedding. But what does it mean to embrace this sacrament? A marriage is something that is not merely found in the relationship between spouses, but in a love that should characterize every human relation. This means we must keep in our hearts a desire for fullness. It means we must choose to live every relationship (e.g. friendship, family) with a deep desire of an overflowing love. We must choose to love our brother as ourselves and to love them with no measure.
If there is a lesson that Canaan leaves in every pilgrim’s heart, it is that love is ready to give life for someone else. To love means to give your time and energy without counting it.
Canaan, in this sense, reminds us that we long for a fullness of life that has been written deep in our hearts. “We love because he first loved us.” (John 4:19) We have been loved by a Good Father whose love teaches us the way of life, the way of fullness.