Sunday Reflections-Epiphany 6

This morning we said “good-bye” to Epiphany and turned our faces towards Lent, with the Gospel reading from Mark 9-The Transfiguration.
My day started extra early, since I had asked to ride down to church with Nick, in the hopes of getting the Toddler Room curtains finally hung! And I did it! with time to spare to sit crocheting for a few minutes before our Gathering began. It seemed prudent to wait until after church to tackle the second job of touching up some of the wall paint, where the new track light has been installed, so that second task was accomplished while I ate a peanut butter and honey sandwich with a banana.
The Transfiguration is hard enough to understand as an adult, after all Peter, James and John had trouble too!! But I had read a few commentaries, looked at a couple of (ghastly) You Tube cartoon versions, and then made my own plan.One little exegesis suggested that the passage can help us especially to consider ways in which to use it as a springboard into Lent.- Moses and Elijah’s presence call us to revisit the Old Testament and to look again at the Prophets, to dig deeper into the Scriptures. The presence of the Disciples calls us to continue to gather with our fellow Christians and to “make the journey” towards Easter alongside everyone in our church community. And Christ, as ever, calls us to more time alone with Him to pray and to reflect. Of course these themes can seem fairly lofty goals for the average 6-8 year old! That was where my plan came in.
       After snack with the Toddlers, we first illustrated the passage on the felt board, dissecting the word “transfiguration” into “trans” and “figure” which helped to clarify things.  We looked at a bunch of dried Palm Branches and recalled how, for Ash Wednesday last year, we had snipped them up and burnt them in a wok!!
      Then we each made a little triptych- with an illustration in each of the three
sections – “read the Bible”, “pray” and “go to Church” . Across the top we wrote “Getting Ready for Lent”. Lastly, after a time of prayer, we solved a puzzle I had drawn with various examples of living things that “transfigure”- caterpillar/butterfly, eft/frog, seed/flower etc.  The children having to decide which pair of objects went together.
I never come away from a time interacting with children, without feeling refreshed and strengthened for my own journey. Somehow to explain things to them also causes me to process them and explain them to myself, and always their simple clarity of thought and vision, is a model for me, as an adult, to strive also to hold onto child-like curiosity and faith.
      And then it was lunch, a ride home with the Brady’s, MORE shovelling, the Wil Walk and baking of two layer cakes for tomorrow’s catering order. I’m looking forward to a quiet evening of listening to Gregorian chant accompanied by the New York Times Crossword Puzzle and my crochet!
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