Friday, July 22, 2005

The hilltop

It has been some time since I've posted on a spiritual topic, but I am moved by a passage I recently read in Matthew 17: 1-7:

After six days Jesus took Peter, James, and John his brother, and led them up a high mountain by themselves. And he was transfigured before them; his face shone like the sun and his clothes became white as light. And behold, Moses and Elijah appeared to them, conversing with him. Then Peter said to Jesus in reply, "Lord, it is good that we are here. If you wish, I will make three tents here, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah. While he was still speaking, behold a bright cloud cast a shadow over them, then from the cloud came a voice that said, "This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to him. When the disciples heard this, they fell prostrate and were very much afraid.  But Jesus came and touched them, saying, Rise, and do not be afraid. And when the disciples raised their eyes, they saw no one else but Jesus alone.

Sometimes I feel very much like Peter, in the middle of an amazing spiritual experience, or enjoying a wonderful spiritual high, on the mountain with the Lord, where all is clear and our vision of greater things enhances our love of God, of life, and of all that is right. While this is amazing, and the experience is one that we all enjoy, we are called to take this energy and this faithfullness, to take what we know is right, and bring it into the darker valley where the mountain's light will help us find our way in a darker, more dangerous world.

We are called to visit the mountain for renewal and clarification, but we are required to live our lives in the valley so that we can announce to all what we know as truth. Right and wrong are no less clear in the valley, but it is our human eyes which see shades of gray. May we be as bold as the disciples, who regain their bravery with the touch of God!