We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
This is such a weird Gospel lesson. Like the rest of Mark, all the business of people being terrified by their direct encounter with God, and then being told to TELL NO ONE.
Irreverently, the voice out of the cloud initially makes me think of a Monty Python skit and God saying "stop that bloody grovelling"
Also, as a mom who has done a LOT of laundry, my attention fixed on the bleached white phrase...thinking how it must have impressed people in a culture that dressed in assorted shades of tan, brown, and the like, and who were probably pretty grubby most of the time to see someone gleaming white. VERY dramatic. Whereas we are all so used to media images and have our super duper chemicals to get our clothes whiter than white...
But, when not being flippant, I think the point of this weird ghost story is that we are all like Peter. We are gobsmacked by God in our face, and our first reaction is to DO something, anything, to avoid just looking at Him, just listening to Him. Distract, look away, get busy with normal life. Organised religion, after all,(with all its bloody fundraisers and committees) might be described as a lot of busy work to avoid direct communion with God which one can have on one's knees in one's study or on a hike, or while reading Scripture or whatever..
So to read this passage a few days before Lent begins? Reminds me, with all my avoidance of God, all my flight into activity, to make like those old Railroad crossing signs with Him: Stop, Look, Listen. Instead of giving up a million things or taking on umpteen spiritual disciplines we can brag to our churchey friends about, we could just wait on GOd. I am lousy at this. Like Peter, I'd rather be building something, or trying to impress the teacher by asking a question about what to do next. But this passage says "just listen to Him.".