Homily 2nd Sunday of Lent – 25th February 2024

Homily 2nd Sunday of Lent – 25th February 2024

I do not suppose that there is much in life that human beings find more difficult to bear than a sense of being without purpose. It seems that people can do or endure practically anything, if they can do so with a sense that it means something, that there is a reason for it.

Because that is true, it is really not surprising that for most of us, our lives are given meaning by those moments when we somehow sort of see through all of the complexity and mystery of life, and perhaps only for a moment, truly get the point, truly see the purpose behind all that we are asked to do and bear.

Such moments are truly revelation. Life is so much more than what it seems to be. There is at work in our lives a tremendous power, a power that is saving, re-creating the universe, a power whose presence is far beyond our ability to directly experience, but which nonetheless is so intimately bound up with even the smallest detail of our lives, that in fact we are the agents of that power.

That power is God’s creative power that has poured into our lives and is now at work within those lives.

Certainly, for the apostles who witnessed the transfiguration it was a moment of just such revelation. It is as if they were allowed to see beyond their immediate experience, to see what was really happening there, the presence of God. They come away from that moment changed men.

The first reading pictures another such moment. At some point in his life, Abraham experienced his contact with God in such a way that he felt compelled to respond with the sacrifice of his son. It wasn’t until God intervened that Abraham realised he had been wrong. That what he thought was happening was not. He wasn’t being asked to satisfy God’s anger or jealousy.

Rather, he was being called by God to be the first step in which was to be a centuries long process of revelation, a process in which God would slowly proclaim ownership of all human life, all human effort.

So, for us, as well. There is a great deal more going on in our lives then we suspect, a great deal more than we are capable of experiencing right now. We are all of us accomplishing a great deal more than we think in our everyday lives.

All of the daily details of living here been charged with an infinite value, and that is true because our lives have been claimed by God, who consistently acts through our efforts, according to God’s design. We cannot sense that presence anymore than could the apostles before the transfiguration. Like them, we can only trustingly abandon ourselves to the fact that it is there.