Sermon, February 14, 2021 - St. Martin's In the Desert

Sermon, February 14, 2021

Last Sunday after the Epiphany
Year B
February 14,2021

First Reading: 2 Kings 2:1-12
Psalm 50:1-6
Second Reading: 2 Corinthians 4:3-6
Gospel: Mark 9:2-9 


O God, who before the passion of your only-begotten Son revealed his glory upon the holy mountain: Grant to us that we, beholding by faith the light of his countenance, may be strengthened to bear our cross, and be changed into his likeness from glory to glory; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever. Amen


Imagine Jesus on a normal day walking with three of his disciples, Peter, James and John.

Jesus appears to them to be normal when he asked them to come with him…. But on this day, he leads them high on a mountain, by themselves…Right before their eyes, He was transfigured before them, and his clothes became dazzling white, such as no one on earth could bleach them.  

This no ordinary morning, no ordinary walk…the light was so bright, it was almost blinding. We all at one point in our lives have looked at a light so bright, that we had to look away or close our eyes, it was so bright.

Suddenly they see Elijah and Moses talking to Jesus…they were so terrified by this, that Peter, not really knowing what else to say…says, “Rabbi, maybe we shouldn’t be here, you want us to go and prepare three dwelling places, one for you, one for Moses, and one for Elijah”? really what else could he say?? Maybe it’s his way to honor them, by putting up areas of worship for them.

Then a great cloud overshadowed them…and a voice came from the cloud.

“This is my Son, the Beloved; listen to him!”

Let’s go back, they climb this mountain and are separated from the other disciples, then Jesus is transformed before them in a bright light, and two of God’s greatest, are there talking to Jesus.

Next comes the shadow of heavy clouds and a Thundering voice out of the clouds….” This is my Son, the Beloved; listen to him!” And, they start down the mountain Jesus…ordered them…tell no one about this, until the Son of Man has risen from the dead.

I am pretty sure they agreed to this, who would believe them and how would they explain it…after all Jesus is still there and they don’t really know what is going on! 

Telling no one about it was the only thing that made since.


Peter, James, and John have experienced the past, the present, and the future all in an instance.  I wonder how we would find that experience? 

It is possible, that some of us have had different experiences in life, maybe not as clear and involved as the three disciples, but we… all have had our own time on the mountain of life or in the desert in life. 

We all have connected to God in different ways, through experiences of our own through our faith.

And there are people who are still waiting for that one experience in life that will help them believe more than they do. 

We will have times in our lives, when our faith is being tested and challenged.   

Jesus will always be there to help us transform ourselves, we can’t just have one experience and then say, Okay, I made it, and I can stop there, we have to come down the mountain with him and turn around and go back up. 

There is plenty more of growing to do and we have to be ready for that invitation from Jesus to go. 

Keeping a strong spiritual life will help us to be ready when he says, come, we have another mountain to climb.

God spoke twice, when Jesus was baptized and in this scripture. Here God says, “This is my Son, the Beloved; listen to him!”

Listen to him in Sunday worship, listen to him when reading the scriptures, Listen to him when you’re in personal prayer.

Say to your self every morning…Lord I am Listening! Let your self be transformed. 


The Reverend Lola Culbreath