SECOND SUNDAY OF LENT
(Violet) Cycle A/Year I (March 12, 2017)
Gn 12:1-4/2Tm 1:8-10/Mt 17:1-9
Jesus took Peter, James and John to a high mountain where He transfigured before them. Moses and Elijah appeared to them conversing with Jesus. Suddenly, a bright cloud cast a shadow over them and a voice from the cloud said: “This is my beloved Son, with whom I am well pleased; listen to him” (Mt 17:5b).
The voice from the cloud is the voice of God the Father. God revealed the real identity of Jesus to His chosen apostles. With this revelation, Jesus is manifested not simply as an ordinary preacher, religious leader or a prophet. Jesus is the Son of God and thus, by nature, Jesus is God. Being God, Jesus’ words are the words of God; His teachings are God’s teachings and His laws are God’s laws. That is why, God said to the apostles about Jesus: “Listen to Him”.
The words of God to the apostles are the words of God addressed also to us, Jesus’ disciples. We need to recognize the divinity of Jesus Christ and therefore to listen to Him. We claim to be Christians, followers of Jesus. The question is: Do we listen to Jesus?
Sanskruti Siras, an amateur writer and literature lover, told of her story: My principal asked us this question, of course, orally: Ramu worked at a butcher’s shop. His height was 5’6. His waist was 36 inches. He worked 10 hours a day and earned 50 rs. per day. What did he weigh? Everyone started calculating Ramu’s weight by multiplying, dividing, adding, subtracting, and finding relation between all the digits. Then a guy stood up and said, “Ma’am, He weighed meat.” “Ahhhh!” We all sighed. The question was not What was his weight; it was What did he weigh! Yet I being the class topper failed to answer such a simple question! We all learnt the importance of active listening.
Maybe, like Sanskruti and her classmates, we simply read the gospel, hear Christ’s voice but we do not listen to Him. To listen to Jesus means to ponder on His words and to follow His teachings. We cannot just hear and forget. We need to actively listen, ponder and obey because the words of Jesus are the words of God. Since Jesus is God, His words are the words to eternal life.
As we go deeper to the season of Lent, God invites us to listen to His Son, Jesus Christ. It is therefore the opportune time to read the gospels of Christ and try our best to listen to the message of Christ for us this Lenten season. Maybe Jesus is asking us to do a little bit of sacrifices like fasting and abstaining from our favorite facebook, twitter, instagram, TV program, snacks, hang outs, beer, etc. Maybe Jesus Christ is inviting us to join Him in His days of fasting and praying in the desert. Lenten season is our desert time with Jesus. It is a time to pray and fast. It is also a privileged time to give alms to the poor because charity is the center of our religion.
May we never misuse this favorable time to be in communion with Jesus’ sufferings on the desert and on the cross because it is the only way by which we can also join Him in the resurrection to new life.