FEAST: TRANSFIGURATION OF THE LORD
Mount Tabor is calling Us
We are living in very troubled times. Christian persecution is subtle. Dressed in the cloaks of intellectualism and rationalism modern-day philosophies, and to some extent, some theologians are drifting further and further from the truth of the gospel. They are inching closer to emotional responses and the insatiable desires of the flesh in ways that are condescending and disruptive to our integrity in God and in Christ.
Truth and obedience are victims. The social fabric is in disarray. People are resisting the Word of God. Spirituality is on the decline. Humankind is disfiguring the divine image in which they were created. However, Christ Jesus in his Transfiguration taught us one lesson: humility and obedience combined sustains the divine image and likeness in us and enables us to reflect the glory of God while still in our human estate. Humility and obedience transform us into symbols of hope and courage for those who will be shaken by the scandal of the Cross. Yes! Mount Tabor is calling to a new beginning.
Deviating from the existing chaos today requires sublime humility and obedience. We must be committed to imitating Christ; we must courageously walk away from the temptation of claiming equality with God. We must assume the status of servants and allow God to transform our lowly human estate into glorious patterns of his humble and obedient Son. There is no other way for God to transubstantiate our mortal bodies unless we are humble and obedient like his Son Jesus Christ who repeatedly said he came not to do his own will but the will of him who sent him (Jn.6:38). He did and God glorified him (Phil.2:11).
Obedience is the function of our free will. It is a mutual consensus to abide by the truth, affirm each other’s integrity, and collaborate with others in establishing an environment of justice and equality. Genuine obedience does not lead to discouragement and scandal but may warrant an element of self-sacrifice to uphold the truth to fulfil God’s plan in our lives. Christ did just that when at the garden of Gethsemane he prayed: “Father … let your will be done, not mine (Lk.22:42-43).”
“Obedience is a part of the Cardinal Virtue of Justice with which we give other people what is due to them.” It is about dying to one’s self to bring God’s plan of salvation to fruition. Obedience is a type of voluntary crucifixion. We surrender to that external voice who interrupts our personal agender and who will change our lives and our concept of justice and truth forever. That can be scandalizing for those looking in from the outside and are still victims of deception.
Obedience as part of the Cardinal Virtues has nothing to do with a conscious act to deceive another person or to subject one’s conscience to half-truths, and secrets, which can ruin the individual’s soul. It was the obedience and humility of Christ that led him to his Transfiguration to strengthen the hearts of the disciples in anticipation of the scandal of the cross. Today the voice of God, the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ and our Father commanded us to imitate his Son. “This is my beloved Son,” he said, “listen to him.” In other words, do whatever he tells you. Imitate him in his humility and his obedience; God, in turn, will let us share in his Son’s divine glory.
The Church, the Mystical Body of Christ is once again on Mount Tabor. She must once again strengthen the faith of her disciples for the trying times ahead. She must engross herself in prayer; she must allow herself to be washed brilliant white in the blood of the Lamb. Willingly listen, be obedient to the voice of Moses and Elijah, and be ready to face the challenges of the day head-on even if she knows the cross awaits. This is the test of genuine obedience. God is calling us back to Mount Tabor today. Are we listening?
Here I am, Lord, do with me what you will.
 Susanna Spencer, The Humility of True Obedience, in National Catholic Register, Blogs | Feb. 21, 2018