Thursday, August 06, 2015

You Are My Beloved

By Beth DeCristofaro

Jesus took Peter, James, and his brother John, and led them up a high mountain apart by themselves. And he was transfigured before them, and his clothes became dazzling white…Then a cloud came, casting a shadow over them; from the cloud came a voice, “This is my beloved Son. Listen to him.” (Mark 9: 2-3, 7)

O Lord, In spite of myself, I truly desire to each day be a dwelling place for the Holy Spirit as you intend.  Grant me the grace to constantly be transformed ever more closely to be your image, purveyor of your Word, your light in the world.  Grant that I may know, to the bottom of my toes and the depths of my being, that I am your Beloved.  This, O Lord, is my deepest desire and heart’s delight.  Thy will be done.

Recently we’ve attended several family weddings and had such joyous times celebrating the new couple’s sacred commitment to each other and reconnecting with family and friends.  I’ve witnessed “transfigured” faces on these occasions:  the single-focused loving gaze of the bride and groom into each other’s eyes; the joyful pride of the groom’s mother as she dances with her son.  People’s faces transfigure in moments of awe, happiness and new insight such as watching the coral and reds of a sunset from a mountain top in Maine, or holding a grandchild for the first time, or watching the carolers on a Manunita morning come serenading down the path.  Perhaps in psychology these would be considered moments of unguarded vulnerability to the wonder of life.  In Christianity it is the light of Christ shining through.

Jesus was transfigured again after his Resurrection.  His transfigured divinity transformed the beaten and tortured human body.  We share in that transformation through participating in Eucharist, Jesus’ on-going, ever presence within us.  Perhaps if we were able to more fully hear Jesus’ voice saying “You are my beloved sister / brother” we would be “transfigured” and dazzle those around us by manifesting God’s glory ever more directly.

St. Ignatius Loyola said “There are very few people who realize what God would make of them if they abandoned themselves into his hands and let themselves be formed by his grace.”  Make a point today – especially at moments of stress, frustration or fear - to seek God’s presence within you, letting that presence “transfigure” you to a place of peace.  Share that peace.

If this continues to be difficult, consider if your prayer practice could use some transforming.  Picture standing with Jesus on Mt. Tabor.  Let him guide you.

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