This is one of the most beautiful feasts in the Church’s year, the day when we celebrate the Transfiguration. We all know the story: Jesus takes Peter, James and John and goes up the mountain where he reveals his glory.
Why does he do so? We are told that he does this so that the disciples will not lose faith when they see him tortured and humiliated in his passion. Even with this sign they almost did lose faith, such was the shock of the passion to them.
But the Transfiguration has a real significance for us all, even to this day. The Christian life is about being transformed, about changing gradually over time to become more like Jesus. It is not an all or nothing event, but a slow gradual change that comes about as a result of the choices that we make.
Every moral action, every moral choice that we make draws us closer or drives us further from God. If I come into a situation, and I will come into these situations a hundred times today, where I choose to tell a lie, be dishonest, hold spite or whatever, I choose to move away from Jesus.
On the other hand, if I choose to do what is right, I choose to move closer to Jesus. This moving closer to Jesus changes us over a period of time. After a few years we can look back and say, ‘I am not the same person who started out on this journey several years ago.’
The secret is to allow Jesus to make the change and not to try to force the growth. You cannot force a plant to grow: you can encourage it by watering and feeding but it will grow in the time allotted by nature. The right choice in any action is the water: prayer and Mass are the food.
The change takes place in God’s time, not ours. Be patient and he will eventually work.