Today, in the United States, we inaugurate a new President. Depending on what side of the political divide you find yourself in, the day can have different emotional responses. Something more profound than a change of government is taking place today.
The word “inaugurate” has lingered in my mind this morning. I went to several online dictionaries to unpack its meaning. A collective definition from several dictionaries defines the word as “to begin, to introduce, to induct, or bring about the beginning of something.” The word took on a deeper meaning than the cultural ceremony that will take place today at noon in Washington when a new President is inaugurated.
To say the last year has been painful would be an understatement. While the cause of the pain is larger than a single issue, the most painful experience of all is the damage done to some of our relationships. We can begin to heal this damage if we are willing to participate in the healing process.
What if we each held our own personal Inauguration Day ceremony – a spiritual ceremony? Today could be a day that we each inaugurate a new beginning in our hearts. We could choose to see those who are now distant from us through a new lens. We could choose to see them through the lens of God’s redeeming and restoring love.
To inaugurate a new season in our relationships will require that each time we think of a damaged or severed relationship we stop to pray and bless those involved. It can be as simple as a blessing uttered when someone comes to mind or asking God to make Himself known to them during the day. It might be a card or email recalling the good times without any demand that someone change. It might a kind word we speak in a casual conversation about someone who is not present to hear our words of affirmation.
Today, we have an opportunity to inaugurate a new season in our damaged relationships if we are willing. That willingness is more powerful than any political or military force on Earth. It is also something that pleases the Lord when restoration motivates the words and actions of His children.
This is an updated edition of a post originally published on Garris Elkins