By Sister Anne Guinan, MHSH
Last week we saw Peter, James and John go up the mountain with Jesus to pray. As often happens with Jesus, things did not turn out the way they expected. As we move into the third week of Lent we might ask ourselves if our hopes and perhaps promises have worked out as we planned. The shocking appearance of Moses and Elijah surprised the apostles, but did they really get the message from the voice in the cloud that Jesus is now the one to listen to?
As we listen this week to the great surprise Moses received from the burning bush [Ex 3:1-8A, 13-15], we can begin to understand even more clearly how shocked the apostles were in last week’s reading to see Moses and Elijah, their well-studied and centuries-old heroes, suddenly standing with them. And then, Jesus standing alone under the cloud, with a voice saying, “This is my chosen son, listen to him.”
How do you think Moses felt at the burning bush? He was obviously almost speechless, but he did what God wanted. Have you ever been confused on your journey with God, when some teaching or action seems new or changed? Or in your close reflection with God in prayer you discover that you’ve been fooling yourself into thinking something is O.K., but now in the loving heart of Christ it becomes very uncomfortable? Paul warns us in his first letter to the Corinthians that God was present in many ways on the long journey through the desert, but some of the people let evil govern them, so Paul warns “whoever thinks he is standing secure should take care not to fall.”
And our gospel reading this week is pretty strong, too. Are we a tree that is not bearing fruit?