Be Still Know
Matthew 17.4 NLT
Peter exclaimed, “Lord, it’s wonderful for us to be here! If you want, I’ll make three shelters as memorials— one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.”
The transfiguration of Jesus was clearly an amazing moment. Jesus had taken three of his disciples up to a high mountain and suddenly he was totally transformed so that his face shone like the sun and his clothes became dazzling white. As if that wasn’t enough, they then saw that Jesus had been joined by Moses and Elijah. Wow! Everyone was lost for words apart from Peter! Peter had a word for every occasion and in he blundered with both left feet firmly in place, “Lord, it’s wonderful for us to be here! If you want, I’ll make three shelters as memorials —one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.” It was a touching suggestion. He was recognising the importance of the moment and he thought how nice it would be to make it permanent, by erecting shelters. But this was not the plan. Then God spoke from heaven, “This is my dearly loved Son, who brings me great joy. Listen to him.” And with that it was all over. Moses and Elijah were gone and Jesus and his disciples went back down the mountain to carry on with their work.
Clumsy as Peter’s words undoubtedly were, we all understand where he was coming from. When you have an amazing experience of God you don’t want it to come to an end. You want to make it permanent. Surely we have all been at great Christian festivals, or in church services, or in a quiet time of worship when God felt so close that we didn’t want it stop. We wanted to stay in that place. But that isn’t God’s intention for us. We need to come back down the mountain and return to normal life. However, what it is vital is that we don’t forget the inspiration and encouragement of those mountain top experiences. They need to stay with us to nourish us and strengthen us when life becomes tough and discouraging, or just plain ordinary.
Question: Can you identify a mountain top experience in your own life? What strength do you draw from it?
Prayer: Lord God, I thank you for those special moments in life when you are particularly close. May they be a constant source of inspiration and encouragement. Amen
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