Mark 9:2–13, Mark 9:30–32 (read online ⧉)
School could bring happiness to some, and great misery to others. Often the refrain of children is, “what’s the point.” “This is useless.” “I’ll never use this.” Perhaps you’ve said it yourself. Learning can often be hard. Learning new concepts can be even harder. Learning things that shatter your self-perception or perception of the world are the hardest of all.
With Jesus’ fame as extensive as it was and growing, he and the disciples were probably not often alone, although we don’t really know. Only 3 of the disciples witnessed the Transfiguration. Did the 3 really not tell the others? Can you imagine witnessing such a sight and having to keep quiet? Apparently, they did. Was it possibly just one of those amazing things among other amazing things that they experienced.
Perhaps it was time to process all those events. Jesus seems to have set some focused time with the disciples. They experienced yet something else that didn’t fit. They had to understand at some point. What is interesting is that this particular time is framed in reference to the coming cross. The implication is that Jesus did some more extensive teaching of his disciples to understand what would happen. Based on future responses, it is likely that Jesus was setting the foundation/groundwork for them to be able to understand in the future, even while they didn’t understand at that point.
Was it frustrating to Jesus? Many would say, “of course not! He’s Jesus!” On the other hand, Jesus is man, so it makes sense that he would be quite frustrated with their thick-headedness. Teachers deal with this on a constant basis. Parents deal with this on a constant basis. Trying to pass on knowledge requires giving them the framework to build on future knowledge. In an often desperate attempt for the “them” to get it, though, there is this push to get information into them. Yet, that often results in frustration and setbacks.
Jesus provides us a small example. Give space to process. However, in today’s world, everything is pushing information to us. We often don’t have time—and don’t make time—to process information. This means that the information we are given becomes a confused mess, and often our responses are the same. This leads to hard feelings and wall-building, which is not the intent at all.
1) What is God calling on you to sit and process? What is one big thing/goal/learning that God has brought into your life that you need God’s help to work through?
2) Who do you have in your life do you have to help you process things, especially “God” sorts of things?
3) How do you process things? Do you have another word for “process”?