“This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to him.” -Matthew 17:5
On this Second Sunday of Lent we hear the Gospel passage of the Transfiguration of the Lord. Following Jesus’ miraculous transfiguration in which he is seen talking with Moses and Elijah, the apostle Peter immediately says to Jesus, “This is great! Let’s build three memorials to commemorate this place.”
But soon after, a cloud lowers over them and the voice of God is heard to say, “This is my beloved Son. Listen to him.”
Listen—don’t build. Listen—don’t talk. Listen.
Listening is hard. Listening is a skill we have to practice and develop. All too often, we like to talk. We like to fill the quiet and empty spaces that may be uncomfortable. Sometimes, we like to interrupt to infuse our story into the conversation.
Shhh... Listen, just listen.
Just as we want to tell our story, get a word in, or share our opinion, so too does God want to talk to us. But we have to give God the chance to speak. In the cases of our friends and loved ones, how would we ever know what they are thinking unless we give them a chance to talk? The same is true with God.
The disciples were overwhelmed with the vision of Jesus with Moses and Elijah. They wanted to build a memorial, to busy themselves with expressing themselves. But God told them, “Listen to my Son. Take into your heart all that you just experienced.”
This Lent, as we pray, let us listen to the voice of the Lord that is revealed to us every day, in every event of our daily lives, and in the people we meet. Let us converse with God. Listening means spending moments of reflection before taking concrete steps and actions. This must be done in full trust and confidence in God alone. Prayer opens our hearts to God so that God can freely talk and listen to us. We can have our own transfiguration experience today.
We can transfigure ourselves in Christ. Transfiguration is when we mirror God in our daily living by our faith and good works. Doing good and doing acts of charity are the will of God for us today.
Let us keep our minds, our hearts, and our hands open to God.