Thursday, September 28, 2006

Wanna go for a walk?

I have been thinking about/ had the images of the account of Jesus transfiguration stuck in my head for going on a year now. Even after a year my thoughts on it are still pretty disjointed so please add your $.02 or ask for clarification.

My really rough paraphrase is this: Jesus asked his three closest friends to go for a walk. When they got to where they were going things got funky. Jesus started to glow. Then two other guys who had been dead for hundreds of years show up. Not knowing what else to do, one of Jesus' three friends, Peter, suggests they set up camp so they can all hang out for a while. Then this voice from the clouds starts in, " This is my son, with whom I am well pleased. Listen to him."
Petrified Jesus' friends bury their faces in the ground. When they look up, everyone is gone and everything is quiet. Jesus helped them process through what they had just seen and asked them not to discuss the whole thing with anyone else for a while.

The actual account is recorded in the book of Matthew.

Jesus spent three years, pretty much 24/7, with Peter, James and John. They got to see Jesus do all kinds of amazing things and what I imagine must have been all kinds of mundane things.
We don't know if Jesus was aware of what was about to happen when he asked the three to go for a walk with him that day. Nevertheless he asked and ended up sharing one of the high points of his life on earth with Peter, James and John.

They didn't balk at his invitation. They were used to Jesus sharing not just his work or ministry with them but his life as well. It was not out of the ordinary, again my really rough paraphrase, for Jesus to say to Peter or James or John or all twelve of the disciples, "Hey I have to run a few errands, wanna come with?" In sharing his life, his friends got to see how he responded to the valleys, to the plateaus and to the mountaintop experiences. Jesus' "training program" was no program at all. He simply lived life out in the only way he knew how and invited others to come along for the ride.

Finally, after Jesus and the twelve had been together for a while Jesus started to ask them to run the errands by themselves. They would go off and do their thing, with varying degrees of success and return to Jesus and tell him about what they did.

So what? So if I call myself a Christ-follower, then I need to be intentionally developing relationships, intentionally sharing my life with others. Not simply reading through the gospel of John with Harry or Sally on alternate Tuesday evenings but opening up my life and allowing others to see how I walk with and respond to God in the valleys, on the plateaus and on the mountaintops. Have them over for dinner, ask them to go to Home Depot with me, tell them I am volunteering at a soup kitchen and ask them to help out. We never know when God might break through in the middle of the mundane and do something amazing. How cool would it be if we could share it with someone?

If you are on the other side of that coin, trying to follow Christ or figure out if He is trustworthy to be followed; ask someone you know who has been doing it for a while. Ask them if you can tag along?

Like I said a little disjointed, but some really important stuff in this story about Jesus and his friends going for walk.

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