“From the cloud came a voice. ‘This is my beloved Son. Listen to him.”
On the Second Sunday of Lent the Church presents to us the account of the Transfiguration of Jesus on Mt. Tabor where Peter, James and John witnessed the glorious transfiguration of Christ in the presence of Moses and Elijah conversing with Jesus, and the voice of God the Father saying “This is my beloved Son. Listen to him.” So powerful was this experience that Peter says “Rabbi it is good for us to be here.” Let’s stay here. I’ll build three tents, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah. Coming down the mountain, Jesus cautions them not to tell anyone about this until the Son of Man has risen from the dead. The disciples wondered what rising from the dead means. They could not imagine what they were in for.
The Transfiguration of Jesus is a glimpse, a preview, a snapshot of Jesus’ glorious Resurrection on Easter Sunday morning. For Jesus, and for Peter, James and John it was meant to be a source of encouragement and inspiration to strengthen them for the difficult days ahead. It’s a promise, a preview of Jesus’ ultimate victory in the face of the apparent defeat on Calvary. The suffering and death of Jesus will not be the last word. Resurrection and new life will be the final word.
Our journey of Lent is only 12 days old and may be, we’ve already become discouraged or complacent about our battle with Satan and evil. May be we’ve failed in our Lenten resolutions to pray more, to sacrifice more, to be more generous in almsgiving. May be we’ve fallen back into our old sinful ways of life. May be we need a vaccine, a shot in the arm, an encouraging boost to keep at it and persevere to the end. The Transfiguration of Jesus is meant to encourage us during Lent as we see Jesus in all his power and glory, the fulfillment of the Old Testament Law and the Prophets and confirmed by the Father’s voice “This is my beloved Son. Listen to him.”
During Lent listen to God’s beloved Son. Listen to him in his Word in Sacred Scripture. Listen to him in the Eucharist and the Sacrament of Reconciliation. Listen to him in our brothers and sisters in need. Lent is the time to be transformed by God’s grace into his more perfect disciples.
So we pray: Good and gracious Father, we thank you for the gift of the Transfiguration of your only begotten Son. We thank you for your command to listen to Him. We thank you for encouraging us to persevere in our Lenten resolutions of prayer, sacrifice and almsgiving. We ask you to strengthen us during these days to persevere in doing good so that we, your beloved sons and daughters may celebrate more completely the Feast of the Resurrection of your Son. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.