February 15, 2010

Luke 9:33  As the men were leaving Jesus, Peter said to him, “Master, it is good for us to be here. Let us put up three shelters–one for you, one for Moses and one for Elijah.” (He did not know what he was saying.)
This is at the scene of the transfiguration. Look it up if you want details of the story. It is a big moment in the ministry of Jesus and something we remember annually on the Sunday before Ash Wednesday. In the midst of this big deal we have a statement of comic relief where Peter says something stupid and Luke points it out for us. Maybe this is Luke’s (God’s) way of reminding us not to take ourselves too seriously. Lent can be a heavy time of repentance and contrition. It can weigh on us like the effects of this never-ending winter. We need to be mindful of these things. But maybe not too mindful. It’s OK that Peter makes his silly comment. Jesus doesn’t reprove him or make fun of him. He just moves on and we get to shake our heads at Peter. Maybe it’s OK for us to accept that sometimes we don’t know what we are saying and to laugh it off and move on. So, get your ashes if you’ve a mind to and remember that “dust you are and to dust you shall return.” But also remember that you can still walk down the mountain with Jesus even when you don’t know what you are saying. 


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