1-3 Six days later, Jesus took with him Peter and James and his brother John 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 bright as light. Suddenly there appeared to them Moses and Elijah, talking with him.
4-8 Then Peter said to Jesus, “Lord, it is good for us to be here; if you wish, I will set up three tents here, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.” While he was still speaking, suddenly a bright cloud overshadowed them, and a voice from the cloud said, “This is my Son, the Beloved; with him I am well pleased; listen to him!” When the disciples heard this, they fell to the ground and were overcome by fear. But Jesus came and touched them, saying, “Get up and do not be afraid.”And when they raised their eyes, they saw no one except Jesus himself alone.
9 As they were coming down the mountain, Jesus ordered them, “Tell no one about the vision until after the Son of Man has been raised from the dead.”
When I read this text, I think about various times that I have participated in an impressive project, or been on the scene for an important event. I think about how often I have wished for the world to see me in a more glorious way because of what I am connected to. I’m also reminded of my habit to use religious language and ritual to accomplish that desire.
I wonder if Peter, James, and John had any similar impulses in their experience of this story. I wonder how much they wanted to feel special and receive recognition for what they had seen. How demoralizing that they couldn’t talk about it!
And then I think about a God who is more beautiful than anything else, ever, but has no need to be seen as better-than. And I wonder how often I’ve missed seeing this face of God in the world becuase I was too focused on my own.
Outward Mindset Application
Praise a coworker to a supervisor this week.
Pathways Toward Centeredness
Caregiving (loving the world through loving other people): It’s the week of Valentine’s Day! Saint Valentine is known for serving oppressed people. Try to do one thing each day this week that helps someone’s day become lighter and easier.
Questions for Reflection
What characteristics of God are you most desperate to know are true? What prevents you from believing those things are true? Who is someone you know who you wish the rest of the world would recognize as amazing? What is a way you can illuminate that person to the rest of the world this week?
One of our community practices is to gather every Sunday morning for prayer, friendship, and conversation about the week’s Scripture text. Doors open at 10:30am for coffee and donuts. Our circle begins at 11:00am. We’d love to see you there! The Open Table (@ The old DMV) 2640 N Portland Rd Salem, OR 97301
“Liturgy” refers to the habits and practices humans use to form community around shared values and meaning. At Church at the Park, we desire to be a community of practice, becoming people who see the world through the eyes of the marginalized, making meaning through the lens of pain and suffering, and committing ourselves to non-violence in a wounded world. This weekly email is intended to provide pathways of practice for becoming the type of people who embody these values.
Many of our reflections on each week's text come from other sources. If you're interested in reading more of what inspires us, here our our two favorite reflections.