For £350,000 you will soon be able to buy a house which always gets the sun. The French architect Fred Plazar produces homes built on a 14m metal turntable which turns to match the speed of the sun. He describes the technology, no doubt tongue in cheek, as ‘a revolution in housing’. The only drawback is the living space. It’s limited to 200sq m to keep the homes within an average house builder’s budget.
We may sometimes fancy life would be better if we always faced the sun, if nothing got in the way of the brightness and warmth which we associate with the good times. When Jesus appeared surrounded by an intensity of light on a mountain top, Peter, James and John wanted to remain there and bask in it. Instead Jesus took them back down the mountain and continued to warn them about his imminent death.
Lives which only knew sunshine would be very limited and confined. It’s as we face life’s challenges, our struggles with life and our facing of death, that we expand as people. It’s often in times when life feels dark and cheerless that the range of our experience and the depth of our personalities develop and grow.
In the Old Testament, the word used to mean salvation is associated with spaciousness. If we are to be saved from lives which are too small and find the breadth and richness that life offers, times of darkness are inevitable. It’s not accidental that the experience Jesus and his disciples shared at the top of a mountain followed closely his assertion that he was going to suffer.
It’s good that there’s more to life than constant sunshine and to be grateful if we can for what we learn from times of pain and struggle.
Read: For Christ’s sake, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, ….for when I am weak, then I am strong.(2 Corinthians 12.10)
Rejoice: in moments of elation.
Reflect: What can I learn from my life’s current struggles?
Remember: Christ shares our pain as well as the joy
Resolve: to seek opportunities to expand my experience of life, even if they involve struggle or pain