When we talk to someone most of us, I think, would agree if we had a choice we would want to talk to the person face-to-face. The phone, a letter, or today's email are all good, yet, they do not really totally satisfy us in the way that seeing who we are talking to does.
The Feast of the Transfiguration today is how Our Lord spoke loudly and clearly to Peter, James, and John. His revelation on the top of Mt. Tabor prefigured the splendor of Heaven where they and we will see Almighty God face-to-face. Yet, the reason behind this revelation of the Transfiguration to the Apostles was so that they would come to understand that Christ's Passion, suffering, and death were all necessary parts of God's plan. Our way back to God, our salvation, required the Lord Jesus to embrace the sacrifice of the cross. The roadway to Heaven, Folks, we must realize should not be any easier for us. Until our final moments we will be swimming against the currents of sinfulness and selfishness. The tendency we all have at times of making our dedication to the Lord a lukewarm existence. We all have had, I am sure, the temptation to let Christianity become comfortable, empty of sacrifice, accepting the easy-going worldly ways of others?
Yet, if we look to the Transfiguration of Our Lord today, He will help us to embrace the cross and realize that if we do so with love and faith it will lead us to the glory that awaits us. However, when we attempt to remove the cross from our lives as Christians we create illusions that weaken our faith. Removing the cross, our firm witness to the Lord, is not the narrow road to Heaven the Lord points out to us.
The Disciples, we know, were to be profoundly shaken by the experience of witnessing Our Lord's Passion. And for this reason, He leads three of them to the top of Mt. Tabor so that they can see and witness the glory that was His before the foundation of the world! The face-to-face experience of seeing the Lord's glory is what awaits us if we are found worthy of it by our lives. If we are staying on the narrow pathway maintaining a pure heart and giving our lives in witness: Praying daily, confessing our sins, making our faith a vital part of who we are and how we act and think, Heaven will become more than our hope, it will be our promise! This is what awaits us if we make the effort to be faithful each and every day. Just thinking often about the life of Heaven, I think, helps us to be strong and committed to Our Lord. It helps us to persevere.
Each day that passes, whether we admit is or not, draws us a little closer to eternity. For the Christian, the passing of time is never a tragedy, on the contrary, it shortens the distance we need to travel before our long-awaited face-to-face meeting with God. It will happen to all of us one day. The Transfiguration gave the Apostles unspeakable happiness. They came to understand that in it Christ fulfilled the Old Covenant and was chosen by the Father to expiate, or take away our sins, and to Whom absolute faith and total obedience are due.
What will Heaven be like? We all would like to know, yet this Feast of the Transfiguration tells us if we are faithful, we too will see the glorified Christ, not for a few moments, but forever throughout eternity!
Let us ask Our Blessed Mother to help us to learn to offer with serenity our good works of love and the fatigue each day brings with it, with our thoughts fixed on Christ, Who accompanies us in this life and waits for us, glorified at the end of the way.
An when that Hour arrives, when our eyes close for the last time, grant us, O Lord, a grander vision in order that we may behold Your awesome face in all Its glory for all eternity!