By Brooke Holt
“O God, who before the passion of your only begotten Son revealed his glory upon the holy mountain: Grant to us that we, beholding by faith the light of his countenance, may be strengthened to bear our cross, and be changed into his likeness from glory to glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.” The Collect for the 7th Sunday after Epiphany, Book of Common Prayer
The Scripture readings this week center around the transfiguration of Jesus. James, John, and Peter accompanied Jesus up the mountain. Probably like another other trek up the mountain (better known as a hill), the men talked as they journeyed. I can’t help but wonder if Jesus gave these men any sense of what they would soon behold – Jesus in his glory. How could one prepare for a divine transformation before one’s very eyes?
Prepared or not, Jesus’ face became like the shining sun and his clothes became dazzling white (see Matthew 17:2). The next thing these men knew, the great prophets they had learned about throughout their lives were standing with Jesus. Right there on the mountain were Moses and Elijah. If that was not enough excitement for one day, there came the voice from heaven: “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to him” (Matthew 17:6). I am sure these men were listening as they were beholding!
The prayer of the Collect today remembers that blessed account of Peter, James, and John while also reminding us that we, too, are to be transfigured. Granted, it won’t be as glorious as Jesus’ was that day. However, as we behold the glory of the Lord, we are transfigured from one degree of glory to another (see 2 Corinthians 3:18) meaning that we become more like Jesus.
Do you believe this divine truth for yourself and are you seeking this kind of transformation? It is a work of the Holy Spirit that begins with you asking the Spirit to lead you into this holy transformation. The season of Lent offers a wonderful opportunity to make the prayer of today’s Collect your personal prayer: “Grant to me that I, beholding by faith the light of Jesus’ countenance, may be strengthened to bear his cross, and be changed into his likeness from glory to glory.”
Perhaps this could become a daily prayer throughout the season of Lent – that you could be transformed from one degree of glory to another. We would love to hear your thoughts in the comments.
The Crucified Life small group Christian study is designed to reflect upon the Seven Last Words of Christ from the cross and what they mean for us today. Walk the road of Calvary with Jesus in order to grow closer to Him. The Crucified Life small group study examines human suffering as it is mirrored in Christ’s suffering on the cross and what His seven last words say to a hurting world. Find out incredible insights into these words as Jesus teaches us, even in death, how we can use our suffering and triumph over it for His glory. Begin your Crucified Life today.
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