By Kelly Wahlquist
Then Peter said to Jesus in reply, “Rabbi, it is good that we are here!
Let us make three tents: one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.”
~ Mark 9:5
Perfectly nestled into the beginning of the Lenten season is one of my favorite stories in the Gospels, the Transfiguration (Mark 9:2-8). To say it is a mountain top experience is an understatement! In just seven verses, we see the radiating majesty of the Son of God, witness the Old Testament and the New Testament converging, experience the strengthening of the faith of three chosen disciples, encounter the Trinitarian presence of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, and hear the voice of God. Wow! Let that sink in for a minute.
Though we get a generous dose of the glory of heaven as the veil is lifted atop that mountain, it is the down-to-earth response of Peter that speaks to my heart, makes me smile, and gives me hope. Peter is a whirlwind of emotions. Caught up in awe, trying to comprehend the supernatural while at the same time terrified, he desires to prolong this mountaintop experience. So, he simply says, “Rabbi, it is good that we are here.” I love that reaction—simple and to the point.
I picture Jesus looking at Peter, raising one eyebrow, and with the corners of his mouth turning upward, saying, “Ya think so, Pete? We have a perfect representation of the Old Testament—a mountain top, Moses, who represents the law, and Elijah who represents the prophets—and I’m glowing with the glory of God?”
Don’t you love Peter? When overcome by everything around him, he recognizes what is most important; it was good being right there, with Jesus.
Jesus knew Peter, James, and John needed their faith strengthened to endure the arduous road ahead, and he knows our needs too. Whenever I read this scripture, I put myself in the story. Try it. Close your eyes and imagine being one of the three privileged disciples Jesus chose to bring with him that day. “Jesus took Peter, James, and (insert your name here) and led them up a high mountain apart by themselves.” Bask in that for a moment. Let go of all your worries, doubts, and fears. Focus on what is truly important. Gaze upon Jesus in all his glory and say, “It is good that we are here.”
Lord, in my times of trials and difficulties, send your transfiguring power to increase my faith and deepen my hope. I give you my Lenten prayers and sacrifices and ask that you bring me to a greater understanding of what it means to share in your glory.
Call to Action
There’s a beautiful and straightforward lesson tucked into those power-packed seven verses—in times of chaos, confusion, uncertainty, or fear, turn to Jesus and say, “It is good that we are here.” Open up the scriptures and listen to him. Turn to Jesus in prayer and ask him to overshadow your fear with faith.
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