The Gift of Knowing Jesus

This Lent, Dynamic Catholic posted a list of things creative things that we could do for Lent instead of giving things up.( In response to that Article as one of my Lenten observances I am reading the Gospels a little each day hoping to finish by the end of Lent. I thought what better way to grow closer to Jesus than to read and pray with the Gospels.  As I read I find myself wondering… what it would be like to witness this event?  Jesus performs so many signs and wonders that point to who He is and He teaches in a way that turns people’s world views upside down.  I find myself thinking how lucky those disciples were to see and hear Jesus first hand. I sometimes feel jealous because it was so easy for them with Jesus right there to explain everything to them, when today I struggle to hear the Lord speak to me in my own life.  It takes such intentionality for me to hear the voice of God and see His revelation in my life.

Then I read the Gospel for Sunday, the Transfiguration, and thought about the beauty and power as Jesus reveals who he was and I was struck by the conclusion of the Gospel,

“As they were coming down from the mountain,
he charged them not to relate what they had seen to anyone,
except when the Son of Man had risen from the dead.
So they kept the matter to themselves, 
questioning what rising from the dead meant.”

Jesus is revealed as the Son of Man to them alongside Moses and Elijah.  I am sure the scene was overwhelming and beautiful and they felt privileged to be an eyewitness to the revelation of the Glory of God.  Jesus is shown clearly as God’s son and a fulfillment of the prophecies.  But they are instructed not to tell anyone until the Son of Man rises from the dead. They questioned what that rises from the dead means… but I don’t.  I know! It is me who is the lucky one – I understand the resurrection and therefore all the stories including this one make so much more sense when understood in the context of the Resurrection.  How lucky are we?

I don’t know about you, but amongst my family, we share stories a lot and we share the same stories a lot. As we age, the stories of our upbringing take on new meaning and we understand them in a different way. The Gospels are the same as I read them this year they take on new meaning and as I reflected on today’s gospel, I see the disciples needed this revelation but were to keep it to themselves till they understood it in its fullness. It is me that is the lucky one that I get to hear the stories of Jesus retold in the context of the Resurrection. It is me who knows the power and glory of God through this story, and the stories of the Old Testament like today’s testing of Abraham.

For Peter James and John, the full significance of what they had seen and experienced could only be understood after Jesus’ death and Resurrection. As they told other believers about this event and recorded the story for us in the Bible, our understanding of what it means to call Jesus God's own Son has also deepened. I added a new thing to my list of creative ways to celebrate Lent.  How can I, like the first disciples, tell others and deepen others understanding of Jesus as a deepen my own?  How does the resurrection effect my life and help me understand the stories I am reading in the Gospels? How can I share that? How can you?

You can find this Sunday's readings here.

By:  Jeanne Cregan



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