Mark’s account of the mount of transfiguration has always fascinated me. Jesus takes Peter, James and John up to a high mountain and there is transfigured before them, shining face and all. At that moment, Moses and Elijah appear and they’re talking with Jesus. Peter opens his big mouth to offer some inappropriate comment, indicating that he’s missing the point of the whole scene, and then, the bright cloud comes. A voice interrupts Peter, saying, “This is my Son whom I love. Listen to him!” The disciples must have wet themselves out of fear and/or awe.
In this story, Mark shows God affirming Jesus as Messiah. But my favorite part comes after they open their scared-silly eyes: “All at once they looked around and saw no one with them anymore, except Jesus alone.”
I recently sensed God asking me if I desired communion with Him or change. “Or” was clearly the operative word. “Can’t I want both?” I asked. But, even as I formed the question, I knew it revealed my heart. For me, being with God wasn’t central. It was just an avenue to change, happiness or ministry. I can have only one real destination—connectedness to God or my own transformation. I felt God asking me, “What if you don’t change? Is it worth it just to be with me? What if you don’t mature? Would you still meet with me?”
“All at once they looked around and saw no one with them anymore, except Jesus alone.”
I need this kind of sight—especially now in the midst of a crowded and unreflective summer. I’m after Jesus, not patience or ending world hunger. Just Jesus. With all that I desire and all the good things I seek to do, it only makes me more desperate to start and finish with Jesus-vision.
I can only love and serve and share truth out of communion with God. Jesus took the three disciples onto the mountain to be with him and experience God with him.
As he takes me places, I may see phenomenal things. I may experience change. And I may occasionally, like Peter, open my big mouth and say something awkward. And, maybe I’ll hear the Father’s reminder that Jesus is who he says he is. But, above all, the one thing I know is that wherever he’s willing to bring me along, in that place, I’ll see him, and I’ll do well to pay attention.