On Thursday the country celebrated the Queen’s 90th birthday. Queen Elizabeth II, who is now the oldest reigning monarch, and the longest reigning monarch. I know the Queen can bring up a lot of controversy, not the Queen herself, but the very idea of a monarchy is one that can cause discussion and debate. I’m not going to even tackle that subject as I don’t think I would say be able to do it justice, but I do want to think about the example of the Queen, as a person and as a Christian.
Yesterday I was watching the documentary that was shown on BBC on Thursday, with the family looking at old videos. There were a few things that struck me whilst I was watching. Firstly, it was that the family, were a very close family that like to have fun. A lot of the videos involved laughter and playing. There are many videos of the Queen as a little girl teaching her sister dances and songs. There was a lot of rolling down hills, through all of the generations. Princes William and Harry spoke of how the whole family, including their Granny and Grandad do enjoy banter.
The second thing that really hit me, was a comment that Prince Charles made. He was talking about the fact that she was the longest reigning monarch. As he pointed out, this is a record she would prefer not to have. She became Queen because her father died at a young age. She was a new mother, with two young children. She didn’t become Queen because she wanted to, but because she was destined to. She became Queen under horrible circumstances, in a time of grief, but she took that role as she was meant to.
The Queen has spoken at length about how, at the centre of everything that she does, is her faith. Her faith is a living faith, not just something that she does for show. The quote for this week comes from the Queen who says
For me the teachings of Christ and my own personal accountability before God provide a framework in which I try to lead my life. I, like so many of you, have drawn great comfort in difficult times from Christ’s words and example
The Queen, like us all, has gone through difficult times, and yet throughout it all she knows that she is not alone. She speaks about Christ’s words and example, and I think that that is evident in her life. She is in the spotlight, and she knows that she has a certain role to fulfil, you can see from the videos that she loves her time which is just her and the family, but she knows what is expected of her and she does that.
What better example to follow, than Jesus, who too, had to do a certain job. We see a few times, that he has to battle with that job. Whether that was during the time in the dessert before he started his ministry, or when he is in the garden of Gethsemane and asks his father to take the job of dying away from him.
It is very easy for all of us to look at others, and think, oh I wish I had that life. But I know that as great as it may look having various houses, having exotic holidays, and having servants. I know I wouldn’t want to swap places with the Queen, and I have the upmost respect for her. She never publically questions what her role is, she does it, with the grace of God, and the example of Jesus keeping her going at all times. Do we do that with our everyday lives?
She knows she couldn’t do it alone, in the same way that Jesus had to draw on his Father. They both show those two contradictory characteristics… Meekness and Majesty.
Challenge: Think about what your role is, at home, at school, at work. Do you do it unquestioningly, or do you fight it/whinge about it/ complain about it?
Prayer: Father God, we thank you for the example that you have set for us, and that you never leave us. Thank you for Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and that you are her cornerstone, and her example. We pray that you can be the same for us. Amen