Photo illustration by Phil Younk
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Jesus speaks to our hearts during prayer
Based on the Gospel of Mark 9:2-10
A shining moment – a glimpse of divine glory! In this Sunday’s Gospel, Jesus takes Peter, James and John with him and goes up a mountain to pray. The apostles have been with Jesus a long time – listening to his teaching, watching him pray, seeing him perform miracles and watching crowds of people listen to his every word.
Jesus has been teaching the apostles who he is and what it means to be his disciples. He told them of his forthcoming suffering, death and Resurrection. This greatly troubles and confuses the apostles.
As he prays on the mountaintop, Jesus is transfigured (changed) right before their eyes. His face begins to shine as bright and radiant as the sun, and his clothes become whiter and more dazzling than new-fallen snow.
Moses and Elijah appear and talk to Jesus. Remember who these men were? Moses was given the Ten Commandments on Mount Sinai, and he led the Israelites out of slavery in Egypt to the Promised Land. Elijah was a prophet, a person who speaks in God’s name and delivers God’s message to people. He announced a long time ago that the Messiah would come, and he warned people not to disobey God and to follow God’s law.
The three apostles are overwhelmed at what they see. Jesus is giving them a glimpse of his divine glory. A cloud covers all of them and out of the cloud the apostles hear a voice saying, “This is my beloved Son. Listen to him!” Jesus allowed Peter, James and John to preview his Resurrection, to build up their faith that he is truly the Son of God.
“Listen to him!” God tells us that as well. We can hear Jesus speak to our hearts through the Mass, through reading Scripture, through the love and kindness of family and people around us and through the wonders and beauty of nature. Jesus speaks to others through us, too.
We can hear Jesus speak to our hearts during prayer. But, we must find a quiet place to be alone with him (our “desert” prayer space) – away from the constant bombardment of noise from TV, computers, headsets and all other electronic gadgets, telephones, radios, traffic, etc. – to hear Jesus’ voice. In the silence, “Listen to him!”
The Transfiguration is the fourth Luminous mystery of the rosary. Pray the rosary daily this week and meditate especially on the Luminous mysteries. Continue through Lent praying, learning more about Jesus, “listening” to what he has to say and sharing his love with others.