“Jesus was transfigured before them,
And his clothes became dazzling white…”
- Mark 9:2b-3a
Dear Transfiguring Christians:
Do you know what February 14 is on the Calendar? That’s right it is Valentines. A day marked off during the year when we traditionally remember our closest loved ones. Some people give cards and gifts of flowers or candy. Others go out to dinner (which this year might be tough with the indoor dining limitations). Valentine’s Day has a long history going back to perhaps its origins with St. Valentine who in the year 269AD lost his life while standing up against injustice and ministering to persecuted Christians in the Roman Empire. He was recognized three centuries later with a Saint day festival that has become synonymous with the expression of love.
However, this year we celebrate, in the church, something much more on February 14th, it is the Sunday of Transfiguration. This is the moment in time, when the son of the carpenter, Jesus of the village of Nazareth, ascends the mountain and is changed in an instant, revealing his Godhood. Jesus up to this point had preached sermons with authority, had healed the sick and the hurt, had fed thousands, he even had walked on the water. But there was still the question lingering, “Who is Jesus?”
In an instant, on the mount of transfiguration Jesus is revealed as God fully in power and majesty. He is God who loves us so much that he becomes incarnate into his own creation, to turn and head to the cross to take our sins upon himself. By his sacrifice and death and resurrection, he gives us a path to his everlasting kingdom. Instead of death and eternal despair we have the hope and assurance of an everlasting love, given to us as a gift by God himself. The mount of Transfiguration is the point when Jesus turns his attention towards Jerusalem and that great gift of sacrifice in love.
It is that gift of love given to you and to me that we celebrate this Feb. 14th. That gift of love that transfigures us also. We are no longer mortals destined to live and die in this world, but in an instant of God’s love we are made eternal members of his family forever. We are transfigured to be a part of his everlasting paradise. May you be transformed from whatever your feeling or facing this February and know that you are not alone, you are changed, lifted up and given a place in his home. Celebrate that gift of love this month and share it with joy and hope. God is with us! He is revealed!
In the peace and grace of God, Pastor Kirk Griffin