2020-03-082nd Sunday in LentRev. Msgr. Michael J. Motta, D.Min.

Last week, Jesus was being tested by the devil in the desert. Jesus was able to overcome those temptations. We saw the human side of Jesus. This week however, we see his divine side.

Sometimes, you think that you really know somebody and then something extraordinary happens in your life or in their life and you find out that you did not know them as well as you thought you did. I think that was the case with these three disciples of Jesus. After all, they had spent nearly three years living with him. They knew that their friend, Jesus, was a great teacher, one of the best. But did they realize just how extraordinary he really was? Did they have any idea of his greatness? Did they have any appreciation of his closeness to God? I do not think so.

The Gospel, from St. Matthew says that Jesus was transfigured before their eyes, that his face shone like the sun and his clothes became white as light.

In today's scripture passage, Peter compares Jesus to Moses and Elijah. Little does Peter realize that Jesus is much greater than they are.

2. There are many times in our lives when our faith in God and his teachings are tested. Chances are that no one is going to put a knife to our throat and ask us to deny Christ. Most of our temptations are much more subtle. Usually they come in the form of compromise when we are tempted to dilute some of what Jesus taught. How much could it hurt to cheat a little here and there or not to speak up when you know something is wrong or to look the other way because you are afraid of the consequences?

Being a weak, sinful person is part of the human condition. We, too, find ourselves tempted and tested by the devil. Is there really a devil or are we more sophisticated than that? Will it really hurt that much to look the other way if we can advance our careers or put money in our pockets? Maybe we think that the moral teachings of Jesus have changed and are a bit old-fashioned. If we think along those lines, then we have become too familiar with the human side of Jesus.

That is when we need to get out of the desert and away from the devil and climb up the mountain to experience Jesus in his glorified state.

Meeting Jesus on the mountain is just what we need on this Second Sunday of Lent to help us renew our commitment to God. Each one of us needs peak moments in our lives to provide us with courage and perseverance.

When the going gets tough for us, and it will, we need to be spiritually tough to keep on going and the only way to become spiritually tough is to stay close to the Master, Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior.

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