By Pastor Suzanne Clemenz
Scripture: Luke 9: 28-36
In our church calendar, today is known as the day of the Transfiguration of our Lord. In the Protestant calendar, this day falls on the Sunday before the beginning of Lent on Ash Wednesday. In my preparation this week as I studied this passage, a scholar observed that this is one of the most mysterious and elusive passages in the gospels. It is quite a surreal scene, isn’t it? Our gospel passage for today describes the mountaintop experience of three of the disciples when they went up a mountain with Jesus to pray. While Jesus is praying, he is transformed, or transfigured, in the presence of God. He appears dazzling white, and two figures – Moses, the leader of the Israelites, and Elijah the prophet – are with him, the three are talking together, and they all have this glowing or ethereal presence, and the three disciples are awestruck. They have no idea what to make of what they have seen or heard. Peter, feeling the need to do or say something, says, hey, this is awesome, let’s build something, make something, so we can remember this, so there’s a place for all three of you. Then a cloud surrounds them and a voice says, this is my Son, listen to him, and Moses and Elijah vanish. So the disciples take in this magnificent scene with wonder, and then they’re kind of dumbfounded, and they don’t say a word to anyone about it. The very next verses in the chapter depict Jesus and the disciples down from the mountain, going to heal a troubled boy. The mountaintop scene isn’t spoken about again.
By Rev. Tracey Leslie
Scripture: Matthew 513-16
Perhaps you have heard the quote, “The Church is the only organization that exists for non-members.” Most businesses and organizations exist to benefit their clients and shareholders; those we’d label as “insiders.” But, the Church exists to benefit those who are not yet a part of us. Even so, in a capitalist culture, it’s easy to observe that most businesses are far more concerned with moving people from outsiders to insiders than is the Church. Let that sink in for a moment. In 21st century America, there are far, far more “testimonials” for everything from teeth-whiteners to cell phone companies than there are testimonials for Jesus. Take a second to consider: when was the last time someone you know and trust told you about a product or service they like – anything from their mechanic or dentist to their favorite cold brew coffee? Now consider, outside of fellow Trinity members, when was the last time someone you know and trust told you about their experience with Jesus or the Church?
By Rev. Tracey Leslie
Scripture: Luke 4: 14-21, 42-44
If you were raised going to Sunday School or Vacation Bible School or even were enrolled in a church pre-school, odds are good you were raised on the song “This Little Light of Mine.” If you remember it, join me in a verse: This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine. This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine. This little light of mine, I’m gonna let it shine. Let it shine, let it shine, let it shine.
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