This is a picture of me in Israel, “The Holy Land.” The mountains and valleys, the roads and cities that God Himself walked. Where Jesus was born and raised, lived and died and lived again.
I was there – in the settings of scripture – just last month. And now, I’m in Gainesville, Florida sweating off the summer heat and scraping by minute after minute in summer classes while day -dreaming of my adventurous and soul-inspiring travels last month. My God, why hast thou forsaken me?
Okay, that is a little dramatic. But have you ever caught that feeling? The post-church retreat, post-mission trip, post-pilgrimage, post-RiseUp blues? What time are you thinking back to? And now, how are you?
Maybe you’re facing the daily grind of seemingly meaningless responsibilities like me?
Or maybe the opposite? Maybe you have so much free time that you’re bored.
Why can’t I go back to this time, or this place, with these people?
What made those moments in the past so special anyways?
In math class a decent guess to a big question is usually 0 or 1. Talking about life and good things, a good guess is usually Jesus or Love. They happen to be one in the same.
Take a minute to reflect on whatever moment you thought of earlier. It was most likely a joyous and happy time.
“Every good and perfect gift is from above…” – James 1:17
Back to the picture of me. (Side Note: it’s hard not to smile when you remember Jesus is alive).
That mountain behind me is Mount Tabor. Mount Tabor is well known as the site of the Transfiguration of Christ. (Mark 9:2-8) Peter, John, and James followed Jesus up the mountain, where he then revealed Himself and His glory to them. Imagine that! Jesus “became dazzling white.” Peter says “Rabbi, it is good that we are here!”
Yeah, you better believe it was good to be there! Peter wanted to set up camp and stay forever. It sounds like those cherished moments in our own lives. “Can we just stay here forever?”
There are times and places when and where Christ reveals Himself and His love to us! He does so through our experiences and adventures, through our relationships with those around us.
It wasn’t long before Peter, John, and James had to return down the mountain and continue to love and serve God by loving and serving His people. We are called to look back to the times when Christ revealed Himself to us and to be inspired by our experiences with Him. He uses these high points, or “mountains,” in our lives to help encourage us through our low points, or “valleys.” So whether your valley today is the daily grind of work and responsibilities, or the struggle to motivate yourself to be productive, open your heart to the Transfiguration of Christ. He reveals the ordinary to be extraordinary. He makes all things new.