Summary: Any hope of transformation requires us to focus on Jesus: see only him, hear only him. The disciples learned on the Mount of Transfiguration that there is only one Lord, and he required their complete attention. His presence and our obedience will bring
I have a hope and a dream. I have an ideal of myself, my life, my family
In that dream, I am a dad who does not get angry or blow his cool. I am a father who is gentle under all kinds of pressure with his children. I am caring and spend many hours laughing, playing, being carefree with them. And when I am not doing that, I am the wise father, giving them advice, helping them find their path in life, bestowing confidence in their little hearts.
I am a husband who is never critical, distant, or flippant. I treasure my wife in the way that she deserves and the way that I am called to do.
My neighbors all value me and my well kept yard. Even my dog listens to me, and never runs away, and certainly doesn’t have fleas.
That is my dream.
I am not alone, the only one with a dream.
Kate Gosselin had a dream. Her dream was to tell the nation about her miracle: giving birth to sextuplets. Alexis, Hannah, Aaden, Collin, Leah, and Joel. She could envision people round the world cheering them on, rooting for their survival and experience of life.
Our Nation is filled with people who dream, who have hopes, who want change.
I clearly remember the night of President Obama’s acceptance speech: the TV cameras panning the crowd: the tears of joy mingled with memories of long suffering, the laughter, the hanging on to every word. The constant refrain: YES WE CAN!—a ringing endorsement and conviction that we will overcome our doubters and challenges and fulfill our ideals
I also remember many years ago the vision of another President who spoke of America as a “shining city on a hill”, a tall proud city . . . teeming with people of all kinds living in harmony and peace, with doors wide open to anyone with the will and the heart to get here.
How grand it is to dream of how different things could be, might be, will be.
How sad it is to live them unfulfilled, To get a taste of change, success, and transformation into the ideal man, woman, family, or society, but not be satisfied.
Our nation, as many good things it has done, still has its crime, its arrogance, its selfishness, its glut.
Kate had a simple and noble vision, but what she didn’t envision was that within a year after renewing her vows with Jon, she’d be filing for divorce, with the whole nation looking on and weighing in.
My own ideal, though I see changes, is far from complete. I am far from perfect. Sometimes I fear I am even far from good.
We long change. We long for transformation. We long to kick our bad habits, erase the bad memories, raise successful families, and build a solid future. We long to be the people we were created to be.
The shining example on a hill.
But, We are not. Not on our own. Not all the time.
But there is one who is. Who was all he was meant to be. Who never wavered, who never gave in, who never failed.
He was, quite literally, THE shining example on a hill.
Matthew 17 After six days Jesus took with him Peter, James and John the brother of James, and led them up a high mountain by themselves. 2 There he was transfigured before them. His face shone like the sun, and his clothes became as white as the light. 3 Just then there appeared before them Moses and Elijah, talking with Jesus.
4 Peter said to Jesus, “Lord, it is good for us to be here. If you wish, I will put up three shelters—one for you, one for Moses and one for Elijah.”
5 While he was still speaking, a bright cloud enveloped them, and a voice from the cloud said, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased. Listen to him!”
6 When the disciples heard this, they fell facedown to the ground, terrified. 7 But Jesus came and touched them. “Get up,” he said. “Don’t be afraid.” 8 When they looked up, they saw no one except Jesus. Mt 17:1-8.
On this day, something very special happened. Jesus appeared before the apostles in a way they had never seen before: He was transfigured, or, transformed in a way they had never seen before.
def: To be transformed means to be fundamentally and completely changed from one state to another. His clothes were as white as light and his face shone like the sun.
On that day, Jesus revealed that he was special. Although he was very human, he was also very God.
His shining meant that within him was divine nature, was complete holiness.