The experience of God can be very different for each of us…for some it can be looking out over thelakes and hills and having a deep sense of joy in he world around us.Please read that 23
psalm at my funeral I am so often asked. I love the picture it paints of God as asheperd leading his flock through green pastures and beside still waters.On the mountain top we meet God and God becomes very real to each of us in the ways that we needHim and He needs us.For some the gift of God’s grace comes through a powerful religious experience in which who God isand what God does and what God wants of us becomes clear. It can be that experience of a calling to faithand to following.The mountain top experience of Peter and James and John comes at a crucial time in their lives asdisciples. They have been following Jesus through his active ministry and they have reached that high pointwhere they have been challanged to say who he is…You are the Christ, Peter responds…on the mountaintop their insight is confirmed and as they come down from the mountain what they have been called to do ismade clear as they meet a poor demon posessed boy and they see how Jesus and faith in him can heal this broken son and the broken world he lives in.A young man who is becoming a licensed pastor for a local church tells his story. For twenty years hehas been an active layman and a very successful business man. He has a great deal of skill working with systems and managing a business…but he tellsus that he began to get the feeling…a deep sense of calling…to something more than manipulating facts andfigures…he wanted to make a difference in peoples lives in a more spiritual way…He wanted to do this andto serve God…He has had a hard mountain to climb…he has had to work and study…travel to texas to aseminary their…meet the requirements of his denomination…but he says this…every day now that I go towork I go to work with a smile…I work hard…I enjoy every minute of what I do.Third and finally , mountian top experiences go with us…back down our mountains into the flat lands andvalleys where we have the chance to try out the wonderful gifts we discover and help others find their giftsas well.That is the whole point of all the bible stories we have read today. On the mountain you are blessedwith a new way of looking at the world…in all its beauty…all its wonderful opporunities to experience itwith others… people and communities…all its opportunities for growth and for sharing goodnews withothers. But you can’t stay on the mountain…Transfiguration Mountain or any of the mountains you and Ichoose to climb..Peter would like to stay on the mountain…he wants to build some booths and camp out there it has beensuch a powerful experience…Jesus says no…this is a blessing…keep it to yourself…lets get going we havethe rest of our jouney ahead of us …our Journey into Jerusalem and death and resurrection and church planting through out the world.Bill Wilson…who helped found AA had a very powerful mountain top experience…in his desperationto find sobriety he came to a cross roads in which he, after so many failures, finally just threw himself onGod…and like those who have the experience of light and life…his whole body filled with the warmth andlight of God…But Bill didn’t stay there on the mountain…he came down from his hotel…contacted Dr.Bob out in the midwest and they got together and started a movement…a faith movement that said…withthe help and blessing of God we can, as a community of broken people, help ourselves and others findhealing from our addictions. A powerful opportunity…born of the mountain top gifts of new life…transferred to living everyday and sharing the experience with others.I invite us today…to open ourselves to this same healing process…We know how mountain tops affect us…now lets let the experience of God…in Christ Jesus…draw us closeto Him so we can know Him as He wants to be for us…Come and join us in this fellowship of faith…We have much work to do to share Jesus with a very needy world…Come …accept Christ and let him lead you and bless you everyday.