Second Sunday of Lent
Readings: Genesis 12:1-4; 2 Timothy 1:8-10; Matthew 17:1-9
It is wonderful for us to be here
Peter’s exclamation in today’s Gospel reading catches my attention dear friends. The Church invites us today to reflect upon the Transfiguration of Jesus and to touch upon the experience of his three disciples ‘up the mountain.’ It was really a wonderful time. No wonder Peter was so overwhelmed and blurted out, “Lord, it is wonderful for us to be here; if you wish, I will make three tents here, one for you, one for Moses and one for Elijah.”
‘It is wonderful for us to be here.’ In our life we, sometimes, have these spiritual ‘high times,’ where we experience some kind of Divine Intervention and feel good. I’m sure Peter and his companions too were basking in the divine presence of Jesus. It was so good an experience that, Peter, almost, planned to remain there and not come down to the challenging and fearful situations of the world. What do we need more than being in the presence of Jesus? It is really good here, I do not want to go back to that sad place again!
Interestingly, we all crave for these wonderful moments in our own life. We do take time out and go for a retreat or out bush for a picnic or for a nice movie or to a beautiful beach; and when we do experience these calming and extraordinary moments, we try to cling on to them like gum to the shoes! It is really wonderful to have these experiences, and it is natural that we want to hold on to them. But we don’t realise, that, these experiences shape us and give us the strength to face the challenges of our lives.
At the same time, it is also true, that, the life goes on. We cannot remain basking in the joy of our extraordinary experience. We have to ‘come down’ from the mountain to live our ordinary lives. We have to leave the comfort of our divine experience and live our day-to-day life so that the experience that we have gained ‘up the mountain’ can be lived out in our daily, ordinary ways of life ‘down the valley.’ I feel the disciples of Jesus did the same. Though at the time, they struggled to understand what is going on, they slowly realised God’s plan in their life. They were able to accept that Jesus had to undergo all the sufferings and pain before he reaches to his glory. They also realised that, they too have to endure the challenges of life, to be united with Jesus in his glory.
So, can we live this divine experience in our daily lives too? Yes, absolutely! This divine experience is not limited to ‘up the mountain’ but extends to our ordinary lives ‘down the valley’. It enables us to improve our lifestyle by adopting new strategies. It strengthens our relationship with others. It gives us the grace to appreciate other’s contribution to our lives. It helps us to go on our journey with faith, as Abram did (today’s first reading).
Let us then hold on to these divine interventions, and live them in our everyday life. Let us share these experiences to strengthen other’s faith. Let us change our ways of life and allow God to take control and finally let us live a life ‘down the valley’ as if we have never left the experience ‘up the mountain.’