Offers food for thought
Part 2 of the Lenten Series
Who, like Peter, wouldn’t want to stay there, in that moment of divine grace, manifestation of God and revelation of Jesus in the fullness of his divinity. Just as he was speaking to Jesus, God the Father spoke, “This is my Son, the Beloved; with him I am well pleased; listen to him!”
Of course, Jesus knew the hearts of his apostles and that there would come a day when all of them, united in the Kingdom, would live forever in union and love. But there was still a lot of work for he and his disciples to do. For the apostles, there was also a lot of growing in holiness yet to happen before that blessed day would come. So, Jesus lead them down from the mountain into the valley of the shadow of death, to continue the mission; to offer healing and redemption, to weep with those who weep, to bring peace to fearful and anxious hearts, and to become through the cross, Jesus Emmanuel, God always with us.
The disciples listened to him and followed him down the mountain and into that valley of the shadow of death, into which his love and mercy would bring light into the darkness and the offer of abundant life. The theme of transformation, of movement from death to life and sin to holiness, through listening and obedience runs deep in the Word of God. Today’s First Reading reminds us that as Abraham listened and set out in response to God’s call and promise, he began a journey of transformation from Abram to Abraham, becoming a Father in Faith. Saul had a similar experience as he too was transformed into Paul. Neither man had it easy, but both were transformed and the light of the kingdom became more greatly visible to the world. The three years that Peter, James and John spent with Jesus was an intense time of transformation, as they too journeyed toward holiness.
Listening to Christ means getting to know him. Listening means obediently responding. As we increasingly "listen to him," turn our gaze to him, follow him, we too will be transformed from the inside out, and the divine life within us will transfigure our appearance to the world around us, so that they too will be drawn into the light of his love and mercy, death and resurrection.
Since our departure from the garden of creation, people have we been having experiences of the presence of God, that we universally most easily explain as ‘mountain top experiences. We get glimpses ‘of the Kingdom of God’s Glory’. It happens on retreats, while engaging in corporal and spiritual works of mercy, while in prayer before the presence of the Lord in the Blessed Sacrament, and in worship during our Eucharistic Celebration. For, these experiences have their genesis in the more ‘ordinary’ moments of life.
Like with the apostles we are also called to journey with God, called to transformation in the divine light of Christ. We are to become the salt of the earth, the leaven in the dough, the candle on the lamp stand, helping people to know, understand and experience the love of God for them. So, like the apostles Jesus leads us from those moments back into the messiness of the world, renewed in our faith, in our resolve, in our conviction, passion, love and impelled by the ongoing gift of the grace of those moments to re-engage in the mission.
Part 1 of the Lenten Series
Part 3 of the Lenten Series
Part 4 of the Lenten Series
Part 5 of the Lenten Series
Part 6 of the Lenten Series
Conclusion of the Lenten Series
Peace doesn't just happen; it's made.
CampusPadre is a college ministry Priest Chaplain with 30 years experience in youth and young adult ministry, who strives to let the Holy Spirit lead and challenges students to seek holiness above all.