Monday, November 14, 2011
And after six days Jesus took with him Peter and James, and John his brother, and led them up a high mountain by themselves. And he was transfigured before them, and his face shone like the sun, and his clothes became white as light. And behold, there appeared to them Moses and Elijah, talking with him. And Peter said to Jesus, “Lord, it is good that we are here. If you wish, I will make three tents here, one for you and one for Moses and one for Elijah.” He was still speaking when, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them, and a voice from the cloud said, “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to him.” When the disciples heard this, they fell on their faces and were terrified. But Jesus came and touched them, saying, “Rise, and have no fear.” And when they lifted up their eyes, they saw no one but Jesus only.
And as they were coming down the mountain, Jesus commanded them, “Tell no one the vision, until the Son of Man is raised from the dead.” And the disciples asked him, “Then why do the scribes say that first Elijah must come?” He answered, “Elijah does come, and he will restore all things. But I tell you that Elijah has already come, and they did not recognize him, but did to him whatever they pleased. So also the Son of Man will certainly suffer at their hands.” Then the disciples understood that he was speaking to them of John the Baptist.Matthew 17:1-13
Last evening we attended a lovely Taize service at the Church of the Advent. It was reflective and quiet after what was a fairly restless day.Promised by the weather report of a sunny day, we found ourselves with a stormy day, chilly and threatening. The music brought me to a quiet and restful place, to moments of peace and tranquility. As we stepped outside the world had been transformed. What were once gloomy sky scapes were now brilliant with pinks and oranges. In a quiet moment I said to my husband that it looked like a Maxfield Parrish sky. Other folks came pouring out of the church and looked up to see what we were seeing. Then everyone was transfixed with the beauty and the change of scene.
Jesus and his disciples have a brief moment before he turns to face Jerusalem. It would be his last trip there. High up on a mountain, the disciples glimpsed, if but for a moment, their world transformed in beauty, their leader and friend reflecting his true nature and a vision of God's true reign on earth. They had stepped out of the turmoil for a moment and God found a way to show them the promise of new life, the promise of the in-breaking of God's reign. Some days we just need a little insight and hope to keep on keeping on.
Today, I ask God to help me hold that picture in mind, so that I can continue to move forward, one step at a time, following where God leads. May I remember that the challenges of the day are no match for God's love and faithfulness. And may we all, no matter how dark the road, remember God is walking with us and providing us with new vision and new insight all along the way.