McKnight comments, “Death bewilders all of us. Tragic death pound the core of our being, forcing upon us the deep question ‘Why?’ Tragedies mock shallow answers, driving us deeper into the mysteries of life. We are led to one of two possible alternatives: either we face the wild winds of tragedy with our hearts anchored in hope, or we turn our backs to hope to be blown by the wild winds into the shoals of despair.”

Jesus helps us in dealing with tragedy. Jesus leads us through the maze. McKnight writes, “He helps us to know that there is more to life than this world and this mortal body, that there is an eternity with Abba. Knowing that ‘all is elsewhere’ leads us not to minimize our pain, but to endure it, to embrace it, and to carry it with us as we walk on in hope.”

McKnight points us to the transfiguration. In the midst of describing his death to his disciples, in the midst of their incomprehension, Jesus takes Peter, James, and John up on the mountain to pray. There he is transfigured. He is changed. His face and clothes become as lightning. Moses and Elijah appear. God’s voice is heard from heaven, “This is my beloved son. Listen to him.”

What do we learn from the transfiguration? What do we take away from this experience? McKnight argues that it is not what we typically assume. Instead, “What we see in Jesus’ transfiguration is not so much his deity, but the glorification of his humanity–what all humans really and potentially are.”

Jesus shows us what it means to be truly human. Jesus leads us to be what we were always meant to be.

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