by Rev. Colleen Woodley

To be transfigured is to be changed, elevated, to be made more beautiful and glorious. It is conversion and transformation. It makes one different in form and function, and essence. Jesus brought his friends with him to the mountain top and allowed them to witness his transfiguration.

We may wonder what that experience must have been like. We may have difficulty imagining such a stunning and extraordinary thing. But in our lives as believers-is it possible that we are called to a similar transfiguration ourselves?

Does this Gospel story really have a direct correlation with us in our own lives?

Is it possible-is it even right for us to entertain a thought of ourselves being transformed and transfigured? Maybe so, or maybe even certainly so.

As we pray and serve and participate in our faith, we are transformed. Each day that we love each other as God loves us, we are transformed. Our lives become brighter, our souls become fuller and more aligned with the one who created us.

It does take some imagination in order to see ourselves in this way, but try to see yourself ablaze with God’s love shining through you. To see God within yourself, lighting every part of yourself. The light from light, true God from true God. Although this is quite mysterious and takes some inner thought process, it is exactly what we are involved in when we come together to pray here. The devotion, the love, and the unity that we participate in here, are acts that work to allow us to be transfigured.

It may sound unusual or maybe even unbelievable, but we do experience changes in our very being when we encounter Christ together in prayer and worship. Science and the medical profession has documented this with MRIs of the brains of people when they pray, or when they are engaged in spiritual thought and meditation. It is a change that is visible, one that is seen on a spiritual level, as well as a practical level. We see it, we sense it, and we feel the experience of being unified with the Creator, the Redeemer, and the Holy Spirit. It increases our sense of unity with each other as well.

So that Divine spark, the God particle, the piece of us that knows of God dwelling within us-is a real thing and it enhances us and makes us better, more beautiful; it illuminates the best of our nature. The brilliant, transformative light emanating from the Triune God has no beginning and it has no end. It is that same light that is the high point of the Gospel today-it is that same light that our loving God infuses into each of us, as we face toward it, as we grow in faith and love.

– Rev. Colleen