February 24, 2013 — Second Sunday of Lent
Today’s readings pose a challenge to us — they ask us to look beyond this life and this world. Of course, Jesus did that often in His ministry. In relation to His own life and His time on earth, He was fond of saying something similar to what He said in John 16:36, “My Kingdom is not of this world.”
As is often the case in Scripture, all of the ideas about Heaven and life in Heaven are coalesced in the Gospel from Luke, the recounting of the Transfiguration. The Transfiguration has been called “the culminating point in Christ’s ministry on earth” — with His Baptism as the beginning point and His Ascension as the end point. During the Transfiguration His body and His face became dazzling — so bright that it might almost blind someone looking upon Him. It was His Divinity showing through.
Peter, who can be very much like us, wanted to stay there on the mountain top, build some tents, and create a permanent experience. But permanence is only in Heaven. Heaven is eternity. Stewardship calls us to recognize that — to strive to be as holy as we can be, and to serve as unconditionally as we possibly can. Nevertheless, what should be our driving force — our true comprehension — is that for us, just as for Jesus, our Kingdom is really not of this world. People who embrace stewardship as a way of life live with an awareness of the present and the future, of both time and eternity.