But Only Jesus

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Transfiguration Sunday, Year B

Transfiguration Sunday might not be a common observance in the United Methodist tradition. There are those who do attempt to pay attention to this significant moment in the life and ministry of Jesus, but many do not. Now, as a part of the “Follow Me” series, would be a time to take a moment and consider this event.

The “Follow Me” series ends where it began, with a contemplation of the one we follow. We began at the river, where Jesus, dripping from the waters of his baptism, hears a voice of approval and sending. We end with Jesus glowing on a mountain peak, with a voice announcing to all have ears to hear that this is indeed the very Son of God and that it would be in our best interest to listen to him. Following Jesus means, in the first place, listening to him.

But only Jesus means that at the center of our choosing, our thinking, our doing is the person of Christ, who guides and directs us, loves and redeems us, and supports and strengthens us. This experience of worship is an unashamed celebration of Jesus, who was revealed on the top of the mount of transfiguration as the fullness that we need. He steps into the role of the light of the world.

The season of Epiphany is framed by light, and here the light is revealed, is given. Like the three disciples in that moment, we don’t always know what to do with it, how to respond to it. But we know we want it; we want to dwell in it. We want that light to remove all the darkness from our lives. So celebrate the light. Follow the light. Embrace the light.

Fill the worship space with light. Invite those worshiping at home to turn on the light, light candles, flashlights, cell phone lights. Let there be light. Sing about the light: “Christ is the World’s Light,” “I Want to Walk as a Child of the Light,” “This Little Light of Mine.” Sing whatever brings to mind the shining presence of Jesus in our midst.

It is also a truth that this person of light leads us back down the mountain. We can’t stay in the peaks, away from all that might wound us. So, we are led out into the darkness that still exists, but we carry the light with us, within us, as we live and work in hope and confidence. Our service sometimes will take us into the darkness of this world. But we remain evidence that the light still shines.

Transfiguration Sunday Call to Worship

(Matthew 17:1-8, Mark 9:2-9, Luke 9:28-36)

We have seen the light of God;
on high mountains of celebration
and in the ecstasy of a lover's embrace.
We have seen the light of God;
through the bitter scorn of betrayal
and the searing chasm of grief.
We have seen the light of God;
with eyes that have been shaded,
with eyes that have been opened,
with eyes that have been blinded.
We have seen the light of God.

- copyright © 1997 Katherine Hawker. Posted on her Liturgies Outside website.
Reposted: https://re-worship.blogspot.com/2012/01/call-to-worship-transfiguration-sunday.html

Call to Worship

(inspired by Matthew 17:1-8, Mark 9:2-9, Luke 9:28-36, 2 Peter 1:16-18)

Beyond our busyness,
Above the cold winter floor
there is a glory rising born of heaven
and reaching out to each one of us

a light that shines through the clouds
an invitation seeking all of who we are
that transfigures the world

that transforms darkness into hope
that brings life from a cross
where old life ends and new life is born

In glory Jesus meets us here
raising us from depths of valley to the height of the mountain
carrying the weight of our humanity
to the heights of heavens glory.

Let us worship from the mountain and hear again
“This is my Son, my Chosen; listen to him!”

~ written by Rev. Rob Smith, Spirit of Life Presbyterian Church, Apple Valley, MN. Posted: https://re-worship.blogspot.com/2017/02/call-to-worship-for-transfiguration.html

Prayer - Thematic

Holy God, mighty and immortal,
you are beyond our knowing,
yet we see your glory in the face of Jesus Christ,
whose compassion illumines the world.
Transform us into the likeness of the love of Christ,
who renewed our humanity so that we may share in his divinity,
the same Jesus Christ, our Lord,
who live and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit. Amen.


Prayer of Invocation: Transfiguration

(2 Kings 2:1-12, Mark 9:2-9)

O Holy One,
on mountaintops and valley floors
you reveal to us the light of your love.
Our hearts desire is to bask in the amazing glory
of the divine presence.
With each encounter we are changed and transformed.
Draw us nearer
that we might receive a double portion of your Holy Spirit.
Help us, O Holy One, to live our lives as a reflection of divine glory.
May we walk among our brothers and sister as a blessing,
bearing light into dark places,
hope to displace despair,
and love that casts out hate.
Our world is hurting
and we need the followers of Jesus to follow more closely.
Maybe then we will hear your voice speaking to us and saying,
… “listen to my Child, the Beloved!” Amen.

— from Witness to Wonders: Service Prayers for Transfiguration Sunday, written by the Rev. Madison Shockley, pastor of Pilgrim United Church of Christ in Carlsbad, CA. Posted on the United Church of Christ’s Worship Ways website.
Reposted: https://re-worship.blogspot.com/2012/01/invocation-transfiguration.html

Prayer for Transfiguration Sunday

Our request for the light of God to shine in our lives brightly and in full force is heard and will be answered.

Radiant God, source of light,
as you surrounded Jesus with your glory,
so you come to us in penetrating brightness.

You catch us off guard and expose our weakness.

We choose the limelight while you call us to explore the shadows
and brighten the darkness.

We seek the spectacular while you bind up the broken in
countless acts of mercy.

We seek to stay on the mountain or in a comfortable pew while
you walk to the valleys of need.

Radiant God,

fill us with light and courage to carry good news into all the
corners of the world and to bring back the joy of your presence.

By Reconciling Congregation Program From Shaping Sanctuary: Proclaiming God’s Grace in an Inclusive Church, Copyright 2000. Reprinted by permission.
Reposted: https://www.manyvoices.org/blog/resource/prayer-for-transfiguration-sunday/

Prayer: Glory

(inspired by Matthew 17:1-8, Mark 9:2-9, Luke 9:28-36, 2 Peter 1:16-18)

We worship you, O God, with songs of praise.
We worship you with words of prayer
and with ears that listen for you to speak
your saving truth into our lives.
We worship you in the silent spaces
where we struggle for hope and for courage.
We long for a glimpse of your glory:
the glory that shines in the darkness
and the darkness cannot overcome it;
the glory that touches lives with a beauty so holy
that it heals the wounded soul;
the glory that gives strength to the weary.

We, who stumble and fall so often,
worship you,
longing for your light to shine upon us.
Dazzle us with your holy love,
draw us into your purifying presence,
speak to us your transforming truth.
Then, grant us grace
to live every moment
changed by such glory—
daring to live with hope and courage and love
reflecting the life of Jesus,
through whom your glory shines
in the most unexpected ways. Amen.

- written by Christine Jerrett, and posted on Christine Jerrett: Reflections on being the Church in God’s new creation. http://christinejerrett.wordpress.com/tag/prayer/
Reposted: https://re-worship.blogspot.com/2014/02/prayer-for-transfiguration-glory.html

Prayer for Transfiguration

Holy God,
upon the mountain you revealed our Messiah,
who by his death and resurrection
would fulfill both the law and the prophets.

By his transfiguration enlighten our path
that we may dare to suffer with him in the service of humanity
and so share in the everlasting glory of him
who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit,
One God, for ever. Amen.

Lawrence Hull Stookey, United Methodist Hymnal, 259

Prayer for Transfiguration

(inspired by Matthew 17:1-8, Mark 9:2-9, Luke 9:28-36, 2 Peter 1:16-18)

O God of the covenant,
the cloud of your splendor and the fire of your love
revealed your Son on the mountain heights.
Transform our lives in his image,
write your law of love on our hearts,
and make us prophets of your glory,
that we may lead others into your presence. Amen.

~ from Revised Common Lectionary Prayers copyright © 2002 Consultation on Common Texts admin. Augsburg Fortress. Posted on Thematic, Intercessory and Scripture Prayers for the RCL, Vanderbilt Divinity Library. http://lectionary.library.vanderbilt.edu/

Commission & Benediction for Transfiguration Sunday

(Matthew 17:1-8, Mark 9:2-9, Luke 9:28-36)

Go now, and speak of what you have seen of God’s glory.
Do not cling to the holy moments
when heaven overshadows you,
but as the Lord lives, listen to Christ and follow him
from the places of revelation
to the places of mission.

And may God shine the light of glory into your hearts.
May Christ be with you and never leave you.
And may the Spirit renew the image of God within you.

We go in peace to love and serve the Lord,
........In the name of Christ. Amen.

© 2003 Nathan Nettleton http://www.laughingbird.net/
Reposted: https://re-worship.blogspot.com/2012/01/benediction-transfiguration-sunday.html


(Matthew 17:1-8, Mark 9:2-9, Luke 9:28-36)

May God now send us back down the mountain of our worship.
We have been changed.
We can’t be silent anymore
We have seen the Light of the World.
Go and share the radiance of love!

- written by Rev. Dr. David Bahr, pastor of Park Hill Congregational United Church of Christ in Denver, Colorado. Posted on the United Church of Christ website.
Reposted: https://re-worship.blogspot.com/2012/01/benediction-for-transfiguration-sunday.html

In This Series...

Epiphany/Baptism of the Lord, Year B - Lectionary Planning Notes Second Sunday after the Epiphany, Year B - Lectionary Planning Notes Third Sunday after the Epiphany, Year B - Lectionary Planning Notes Fourth Sunday after the Epiphany, Year B - Lectionary Planning Notes Fifth Sunday after the Epiphany, Year B - Lectionary Planning Notes Transfiguration Sunday, Year B - Lectionary Planning Notes


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In This Series...

Epiphany/Baptism of the Lord, Year B - Lectionary Planning Notes Second Sunday after the Epiphany, Year B - Lectionary Planning Notes Third Sunday after the Epiphany, Year B - Lectionary Planning Notes Fourth Sunday after the Epiphany, Year B - Lectionary Planning Notes Fifth Sunday after the Epiphany, Year B - Lectionary Planning Notes Transfiguration Sunday, Year B - Lectionary Planning Notes