Teach me, Lord, to listen.
The portrait of Jesus painted within the Gospels is of a man of wisdom teaching, and showing, us the way of life. His ministry was marked by profound teachings that turned conventional wisdom on its head and opened the door to the larger vision of God’s kingdom among us. Often, we find Jesus surrounded by a crowd listening to his teachings, most notably his parables. Quite often, these parables are not neatly concluded but left in the open for the listener to ruminate and discern the Spirit’s voice to them. Perhaps this is a vital component of the faith journey—being introduced to a complex idea and allowing the other to spend time listening for the depth of truth hidden within.
As Jesus is teaching the disciples about the way of God, there is a holy moment in which we can glimpse the Transfiguration. Jesus invites his three closest friends up the mountain to pray and they are engulfed by a great cloud. Suddenly a voice emerges with these words, “This is my Son, the Beloved; with him I am well pleased; listen to him!”
Before these words are uttered, Peter is busy talking. I’m sure he had every good intent and purpose, but the awesomeness of the holy overcame him and in his silence, he could hear the voice of God. And the voice beckons the three to listen to him. And listen they did…to the point of leading the movement we call The Way, or now, the Church! Are you listening to him?