The holidays are over; the new year has come; we have to get back to daily tasks. After the pleasure of doing nothing, and the pain of re-involvement in daily life, what shall we say? After the reluctance of leaving the holidays behind, and the re-imposition of daily duties, how shall we respond?
The Master faced that problem after his glorious Transfiguration Luke 9:28-36. Down the mountain he and the three came, back into the turmoil, dissonance and demands of ministry. From meeting with Moses and Elijah he faced needy crowds, combative lawyers, and incompetent disciples.
The father of the demoniac rushed to Jesus with good news: he had brought his son for healing; and bad: the disciples weren’t up to the task. (With the added embarrassment that the leaders had used the failure to shame the disciples and demean their absent Teacher.)
Other then his anticipation of, John 12:27-28, and his experience in Gethsemane, Matthew 26:39, 42, this is the only occasion that Jesus didn’t gladly welcome the challenge. Indeed, he initially responded with a reluctance to re-engage in ministry as we a return to daily activities from holiday: “O unbelieving and perverse generation…how long shall I stay with you and put up with you? Bring your son here.” Luke 9:41
His response can easily be attributed to the re-engagement of ministry after the holy, delightful excitement of the spiritual high on Mt. Hermon. Yet, despite his initial response, he finished by saying, “Bring your son here.” The Glory of the Transfiguration had past; the demands of human need, had returned. To his role Jesus always gave himself.
So how shall we respond to the burdens, joys, expectations, successes and failures of a new year and its work? Accept the passing of leisure and the return to work. Thank God for the chance to start our activities anew. And get busy!