Second Sunday of Lent and today we hear in the Gospel reading from Matthew about the story of the Transfiguration. Jesus went to a remote mountain with three disciples (James, John, and Peter) to prayer and there was a vision of the exalted Christ alongside Elijah and Moses. On the mountaintop, the three disciples got a glimpse of a transfigured Jesus, the radiance and splendor of an eschatological future cracking through to the present.
A great image and wonderful story which we have, no doubt, all heard but what about prayer. In this story, Jesus is giving us an example of the need to escape our daily routines now and then to pray.
As Catholics, we often hear appeals to pray more but can feel overwhelmed as if this is one more thing to add on our daily “To Do’ list. Who has to time to go off to a mountain or even a weekend retreat to pray? Some will even say it is unnecessary as ‘my work is my prayer’.
Prayer is not another task but an action that flows from a realization that in order to live a life worthily we need to be in daily contact with the Source of Life. Prayer allows us to listen to God as well as to honestly speak of our concerns, fears, needs, and hopes. And prayer can take many forms: the rosary, the Jesus Prayer, liturgies, and the Eucharist but it allows us to step back from daily life (even for a short while) and speak to God. It need not be long or fancy- some of the best stories are of people who talk to God daily like their best friend- and it can be done anywhere, even in the midst of a hectic daily life. But prayer is central to keep us open, rooted and aware of God’s love for us individually. We pray then to stay alive and the activity of daily life should flow from prayer; activity cannot replace prayer.
So, during this Lent, following the example of Jesus, let us spend some time daily in prayer, talking and listening to Him in whatever way is most fitting for us.
With God, we can do all things.
Please remember to pray for Mission Doctors who serve so bravely the sick of this world and donate financially if you can.
God’s peace and Happy Lent!