This past week, I had the chance to be interviewed on 100 Huntley Street, a Canadian Christian Television program based outside of Toronto. The interview was on a Monday, but I arrived on Saturday and without a car, I did not have much to do (this is a good thing every once in a while!!). Between reading chapters of Three Act Tragedy (I love Agatha Christie) and making chess moves online against my friend, Larry, I decided to walk down the street to a nearby mall for some souvenirs.   

I love gifts that have a story behind them and I found one that was perfect for our family this past year. An Inukshuk  is a monument made of unworked stones that is used by the Inuit people of North America for communication and survival. The traditional meaning of the word inukshuk is “Someone was here” or “You are on the right path.”

Imagine traveling in the barren expanses of the Northern Hemisphere. For days, one can go without seeing a single human being. During those times, seeing an Inukshuk in the distance can quickly dispell the loneliness and isolation of a weary traveler. It is a beacon, a guidepost, a reminder that someone has traveled this path before you and survived. So will you! 

When we are in the midst of pain, we need Inukshuks on the horizon. They are people we know who have “been there, done that” and can assure us that everything will work together for our ultimate good. They are also those circumstances from our past that we can look back on, reminding us of how far we have come.

Monuments are an important part of our survival as humans. We need visible reminders to compensate for our blinding forgetfulness. In painful circumstances, they are our lifeline, the light on the horizon that keeps us moving toward that place where we can rest once more!

Who or what have been your Inukshuks in life? Have you had the opportunity to be an Inukshuk for someone else?