Gospel Meditation – Find a rainbow and meditate on it.

February 18, 2024 –1st Sunday of Lent

When I feel down, I sometimes watch the famous “Double Rainbow” video on YouTube to feel better. It’s hilarious. A young man camping in Yosemite Park sees two rainbows stretching across the sky. He bursts into a kind of ecstasy. “Double rainbow, all the way! Oh my God!” he announces. Then he starts to weep. He cries out, “What does it mean?” Beneath the humor of his glorious overreaction is the deep intuition we all have, I think, when we see the colorful bow in the sky. This Sunday, God sends a rainbow to Noah, and to us. What does it mean?

Long before YouTube had the double rainbow, Dante’s medieval poem The Divine Comedy featured one in his image of paradise. Seeing two rainbows, he muses that one is born of the other. The bow is God’s promise of peace. For Dante, it’s even more: nature’s encrypted image of the Trinitarian God. One visible rainbow (God the Son) is begotten of another usually invisible one (God the Father) united by invisible light between them (God the Spirit). Like invisible light, Trinitarian glory surrounds us in every moment — but Jesus has made it visible in his glorious body. 

Lenten challenge: This might seem silly, but this Lent I invite you to find a rainbow and meditate on it. You might have to make one yourself, like this current desert-dweller will. Gaze on it. See there a natural gift from the Creator, saying to you, “Here I am! I will love and protect you, surrounding you in My glory.” This Lent let’s embrace that with confidence, rain, or shine. 

— Father John Muir ©LPi

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