To be transfigured means to change your form of appearance into a more beautiful or spiritual state and the word 'Transfigured' comes from its Latin roots trans which means 'across' and figura which means 'form or shape'. Our reflection this week challenges us to transfigure our lives in the very same manner as Jesus did on the Mount Tabor. Now ideally, the Feast of the Transfiguration of Jesus Christ is commemorated on August 6th, so why is it mentioned during the feast of Lent?
Let us not forget that Lent is an opportunity for us to engage in self-retrospection and find the attributes in us that are not pleasing to God and change for the greater good. As such, we are challenged to engage in our very own 'Transfiguration' because the key word in the definition of transfiguration is 'change'.
We, meaning people in general, are too comfortable with our current state that we ignore any modifications that may come in our lives. What we fail to understand is that, God may be moving us from one state to help us, shape us or even make a difference in that particular area which he has moved us to. Bad habits is one facet in our lives that must involve change for the good of others and ourselves. The Lenten season is a perfect platform for us to delve deeper in our lives, see the bad areas and correct them through the sacrament of reconciliation and when reciting the 'Act of Contrition', the line which says, '......help me to avoid the occasions of sin', we must make a concerted effort to never step back into that capacity of sin.
Jesus Christ is so merciful that he longs for us to come to him with a contrite heart. The image which the Transfiguration paints is Jesus radiating in such a way that is not only beautiful but beyond our understanding. Now Jesus is free from any sin, so it is fitting for him to shine in such a way that not only depicts his transfiguration, but it shows his Lordship, in that he is indeed free from any sin.
We too can also shine bright like Jesus but under one condition, we must refrain from sin! As humans it is difficult to do this. As Blessed John Paul II states, 'The Spirit is willing but the flesh is weak'. We may declare it with our words that we will avoid the moments of sin, but we eventually fall into the hands of the world. However, as I mentioned in last week's reflection, we have a secret weapon. Let us quote Isaiah in saying, 'The Spirit of the Lord is upon me because he has anointed me.........'. Jesus has given us his Holy Spirit to guide and strengthen us. People must see the light of Jesus shining from us but that 'light' will never come on if there is sin blocking it. Sin drifts us away from Jesus Christ. The more we sin, the more we turn our backs to God and face the world. Catholics must make a difference in the world in order for a 'Transfiguration' to take place. The Word of God should not only fall on our ears, but it should come alive and be active in our daily routines. If we stick to this special formula and stop putting pride before us, then we too will shine in such a way that will blind the sinners and in the same way that Moses and Elijah accompanied Jesus, we will have the saints of heaven accompanying us in whatever we do and wherever we go.
Let us make a difference in our lives and become transfigured children of God! Glory to God!
--B. Durham, 2014