About eight days after Jesus said this, he took Peter, John and James with him and went up onto a mountain to pray. As he was praying, the appearance of his face changed, and his clothes became as bright as a flash of lightning. Two men, Moses and Elijah, appeared in glorious splendor, talking with Jesus. They spoke about his departure, which he was about to bring to fulfillment at Jerusalem. Peter and his companions were very sleepy, but when they became fully awake, they saw his glory and the two men standing with him. As the men were leaving Jesus, Peter said to him, “Master, it is good for us to be here. Let us put up three shelters—one for you, one for Moses and one for Elijah.” (He did not know what he was saying.)
While he was speaking, a cloud appeared and covered them, and they were afraid as they entered the cloud. A voice came from the cloud, saying, “This is my Son, whom I have chosen; listen to him.” When the voice had spoken, they found that Jesus was alone. The disciples kept this to themselves and did not tell anyone at that time what they had seen.
What did Jesus say? But the important thing that Jesus said was the whole thing about not being ashamed of him and Peter talking about how he was the Messiah.
So now we have this whole scene which reads a bit like a dream sequence from a bad movie.
My gut reaction to this story is that sometimes we really need to shut up and listen. Just be in the moment. We don’t need to always be talking and doing and making things happen.
Can you imagine the scene? There’s Jesus, Peter, John, and James all up on a mountain top. Then with a splash of glory there is Moses and Elijah talking with Jesus. The beauty is overwhelming. The glory of God is exploding before your eyes.
Peter rubs his eyes and says, “Let’s set up tents.”
That’s the response?
Peter would totally be the guy at game seven of the World Series who misses the final out trying to get his phone out to record the final out so he could “remember it forever.”
There’s this movie that I really like called Crimson Tide it stars Denzell Washington and Gene Hackman. I definitely recommend checking it out. There’s a moment as they depart for their mission aboard a submarine and Hackman and Washington are standing atop the sub, taking in the view one last time. Hackman is impressed that Washington knows to be quiet in the moment.
Why do you think we struggle to just enjoy the moment?
I think it’s because we live in a crazy noisy world and we are always surrounded by noise. That doesn’t mean we are necessarily surrounded by sound. Many times we are sitting in silence scrolling our handheld screens. But, it’s all noise and we miss the moment.
When was the last time you took in the moment?
When was the last time you didn’t take the picture?
When was the last time you sat quietly and let a sunset wash over you?
When was the last time you sat in front of the fire just being present in the moment?
I’m confident that I would respond just like Peter in that moment.
Being present and quiet is uncomfortable. The scariest place to be is alone with our thoughts before the presence of God.
That’s exactly where Peter, James, and John were. They were before the presence of God. God, in effect said, “Shhhhhhh! Listen.”
As we put the wraps on another week of daily devotionals, my challenge for you is to find some time this weekend to be quiet. Legitimately quiet. Take in the moment. Pay attention and listen.
Listen to your breath.
Listen to your heart beating.
Listen to the breeze.
Listen to the grass and leaves rustling.
Listen to the furnace kicking on.
Listen to the creak of the house.
Listen to the sounds of the kids playing outside.
Listen to the moment.