A Prayer for Turning: On Inauguration Day 2021

DOUG MILLS | THE NEW YORK TIMES

God of the Turning,

On this day in which we watch the turning-
of one administration to the next,
a page filled with indecency, dishonesty,
corruption, and bigotry
to one that is yet to be written,
help us not be satisfied merely with
the turning of presidents.

Fill our hearts with the right measure of hope-
based not in myths of America’s greatness,
specific political parties,
particular leaders,
or even the breaking of ceilings.

Bring about the greater Turning
we need in this moment,
whether we recognize it or not:

from the poison of staunch individualism and narcissism,
toward a vision of humanity considering the good of all

from delusion and deception as a tool for maintaining power
toward truth-telling marked by vulnerability and consequence

from the violence of racism and supremacy
to a world in which all are beloved, and hierarchy has no place

from policies that prioritize profit for the rich
to practices that fight for the sufficiency and thriving of all people

from a world where bullying is a marker of strength
to a world in which true strength comes from saying “I was wrong.”

from discrepancies in who “law and order” is for,
to accountability for all people, at all times

from a reality in which certain lives are considered “essential”
and others dispensable
to a world in which our collective breath is worthy of sacrifice

from a world marked by building walls,
to one that repairs the breach.

In this moment of opportunity,
may the turning of an administration
bring about a greater Turning in your Church,
granting us courage to
repent of our ways
and walk into new life- not just for 4 years,
but until “we the people” truly means all the people,
and your way of Shalom marks the earth.

In your grace and by your power we pray,
Amen.

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