At our baptisms, we are baptized into the glory of God. One of our Episcopal prayers for the season of Epiphany asks that we might “shine with the radiance of Christ’s glory.” To what end? Clearly, as we move toward the Feast of Transfiguration on Sunday, we are being led to see that this glory, this splendor, this eternal uncreated Light leads us to the hallowing of our wills. Our God-given capacity to live in the joy of loving service becomes stronger as we practice that capacity in small ways.
I think of my neighbor who has been homeschooling her middle-school–aged children during the COVID-19 pandemic, while also making sure that they get outside, play, and come to help out with chores from time to time. Glory in the household.
I think of all of the volunteers at the San Antonio Food Bank, tirelessly offering food to families in need—with smiles and kindness. Nothing smacks of condescension.
I think of the medical personnel who are laying down their lives in the hospitals to bring healing to those who can’t breathe.
I think of all who have worked for racial equality and those who continue to put themselves at risk in the hope of bringing a renewed society into being.
All around us, every day, we are witnesses to that Spirit-led freedom to love and to serve. It is an honor to behold. When we see this love in action, it truly is glorious. We see the whole human family radiant with the freedom to choose love. Christ lifts the veil from our faces so that we can be transformed by seeing and accepting the new freedom to choose to love the whole human family. And God is glorified.
Gracious God, grant me the wisdom to know the freedom you have given me to choose loving service. And grant me the courage to live and act from that freedom. Amen.
God’s glory is always revealed, even if never completely. When Moses encounters God on the mountain, his face undergoes a physical transformation as a reflection of God’s greater glory. The psalmist reminds us of how great God is and how even Moses and Aaron bow before God’s throne. Paul refers to the story of Moses, but because of Christ, God’s glory is now more openly revealed. There is no need to wear a covering as Moses did, for Christ reflects openly the divine radiance. Luke recounts the Transfiguration, when the face of Jesus, like that of Moses, begins to shine. God’s voice reinforces the revelation of the Transfiguration, declaring Jesus to be God’s Son and the revelation of God’s glory.
Read Exodus 34:29-35. Consider the ways you provide evidence of your faith. Do you display it for your glory or for God’s?
Read Psalm 99. How do you seek a healthy balance of awe and intimacy in your relationship with God?
Read 2 Corinthians 3:12–4:2. What “veil” separates you from God—a sense of unworthiness, a hardened heart, a lack of understanding?
Read Luke 9:28-43a. Jesus shines with God’s glory, but then he gets back to his work of healing. Consider how God might transform you to do better the work you are already doing for God.
Respond by posting a prayer.
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