Walking towards our Future Glory
Readings: 1st: Gen 12:1-4; Ps 32:4-5. 18-22; 2nd: 1 Tim 1:8-10; Gos: Mat 17:1-9
This brief reflection was written by Rev. Fr. Njoku Canice Chukwuemeka, C.S.Sp. He is a Catholic Priest and a Member of the Congregation of the Holy Ghost Fathers and Brothers (Spiritans). He is currently working with the Spiritan International Group of Puerto Rico & Dominican Republic. He is the Administrator of Parroquia La Resurrección del Senor, Canovanas and the Chancellor of the Diocesis of Fajardo-Humacao, Puerto Rico. For more details and comments contact him on: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Today is the second Sunday of Lent. Through his transfiguration, Christ reveals to us the glory that would be ours in future if we remain faithful and triumph. Through this, he encourages us to be strong and courageous in our journey this season of Lent.
In the first reading, God made a promise to Abraham and blessed him: “I will make you a great nation…I will bless those who bless you and curse those who curse you.” What is the condition for these blessings to be fulfilled? Abraham had to effectively respond to God’s call and command: “Leave your country… for the land I will show you…” In order words, his part of the covenant was to obey God’s command by accepting his difficult mission.
Most times, we are very fast to claim Abraham’s blessings and glory. This is good. However, it is important to note that the necessary condition for claiming this blessing is, obedience to God’s will and response to his call and mission for us.
This is not easy. At times, it demands that one must leave behind something very important. It may demand one to do something extraordinary. In short, response to the call must makes you “leave” your comfort zone. This is the condition for receiving Abraham’s blessing. It for those who remain steadfast to Gods will and obey his commands.
In the second reading, Paul encourages us to: “bear the hardship for the sake of the good news.” It is the grace of God that sustains us to respond fully to our call. This grace which existed “before the beginning of time and of creation” was revealed by the appearing of Jesus Christ. In order words, we must look up to this ancient grace which is Christ himself, who by his death and resurrection has guaranteed our future glory.
Today’s gospel is on the Transfiguration of Christ. Through it, Christ reveals himself and his future glory to us. Most importantly, with the transfiguration, Christ reveals one of the constants of human life to us. There is no life without death, neither joy without pain, nor regeneration without destruction. All, take place at the same time. Hence, his future glory is for those who have washed themselves pure in the blood of the Lamb. It is for those who have “suffered” for the sake of the good news (Rev 12:11).
Peter’s amazement and statement: “Lord it is wonderful for us to be here…” is interesting. However, he was wrong, and was only being human. No, it was not yet time to rest, or enter the fullness of this glory. “A luta continua, vitória é certa” (The struggle continues and victory is certain through Christ). The transfiguration drama is meant to remind us that, if we work hard and remain faithful to God’s call and command, we shall be among the triumphant church. This glory is only a glimpse of the future glory of our final destination.
So, in order to share in Christ’s glory, we must first walk with him to Calvary. Also, if we want to share in the blessings and glory of Abraham, first, we must be ready to “leave something” behind (Gen 12). If we want a double portion of Elijah’s anointing and spirit, first, we must contend with, and overcome the Jezebel and Ahab of our time (I Kg 19). If we want the prophetic power and glory of Moses, first, we must struggle against, and overcome the Pharaoh of this earthly kingdom (Ex 6: 13).
The glory revealed today should serve as the “activation energy” that motivates us to continue walking towards our final destination. The journey is not yet over, and truly, not an easy one. However, Christ is with us. So, He encourages and tells us: “Do not be afraid!”
Peace be with you!