As I read Matthew’s account of the Transfiguration in today’s lectionary readings (MT 17: 1-9) I was struck by the reported mix of emotions that the “lucky” three disciples (Peter, James and John) felt in that experience. I always wonder how the disciples were changed in their everyday life after that day on the mountain with Jesus.
This morning I was gratified to read something that I have come to hold as a deep truth in life experience but have never before seen in print. (Perhaps I have come late to this reality and everyone else takes it for granted by now, but I’ll recount it anyway…)
Tami Simon of Sounds True speaks today on the internet of her encounter with Lance Allred, the first legally deaf basketball player in the U.S. National Basketball League. In answer to her question about what he was feeling as they spoke, Allred says, “A mix of heartbreak and gratitude…A new alpha* is someone who is unafraid of heartbreak because he knows that as he works through it, he will have so much gratitude for the lessons learned. What makes us human is not our ability to think and analyze. It is our ability to feel multiple emotions at once.”
Life is certainly complicated these days. We feel so conflicted with personal experiences as well as what we hear and see in events around our country and the world. Sometimes we find ourselves wondering “How can we go on?” The miracle is that we do. I am often amazed, when everything seems so bleak, that I can go outside and stand under a glorious full moon and feel a rejoicing in my heart. (I just looked out my back bedroom window and saw that the sky had become overcast while I was writing. A turn of my head to my side window sees only lovely blue…All part of the same sky.)
What do you make of all this? For me it is the kindness and inexplicable work of God in me and all around. May you find the same today.
*Alpha male or female = “In studies of social animals, the highest ranking individual is sometimes designated as the alpha…”(Wikipedia)