How easily we forget!
Wow! What a weekend we’ve just had. Whether you’re a fan of the royalty or not, there was something for everyone if they had a mind to join in and appreciate it. From pomp and ceremony, spectacle, music, poetry, art… In amongst it all there were so many things that reminded me of passages in scripture – not just from the service in Westminster Cathedral.
I don’t want to put our new King on a pedestal and I get a real sense he wouldn’t want to be put on one, not by me or anyone else. Paul reminds us very clearly in chapter 3 of his letter to the Romans that none of us is perfect: ‘…For there is no distinction: 23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,’ and by ‘all’ he means all of us.
King Charles was born into a destiny, not of his choosing, and there were times during his coronation when he looked distinctly uncomfortable with the attention. He had expressed a desire that people should not feel obliged to ‘pledge allegiance.’ Much of what the King has said and done in and outside of the service, gave me a true sense of his desire to serve rather than be served, trying, in his own way to follow Jesus’ ‘…the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, … (Matthew 20:28). In the service he said ‘I promise to serve you with loyalty, respect and love.’ This sentiment was also expressed by his son the Prince of Wales during his tribute to his father during the Coronation Concert.
The coronation and all the surrounding events have also given people an opportunity to consider much wider matters than just the crowning of one man
Stella McCartney (also at the Coronation Concert) on the subject of the environment talked about the pressing need for change, how in adversity beacons of light do shine, how the King has been shining a spotlight on conservation for over 50 years, championing hope and action. She added ‘The work of healing our planet should be and must be the cause that unites us, never the cause that divides us. The planet earth is literally bigger than any of our differences we need to leave a safe and sustainable world for all generations to come.’ Yet Prince Charles as he was, with others like was him, were once ridiculed or ignored much like many of the prophets ofthe Old Testament when they predicted disaster!
Yesterday (Bank Holiday Monday) there were calls for people to get involved with volunteering in their local communities and charities, encouraged to serve each other, to help those in need. This weekend has been full of calls by many for loyalty, unity, respect and love, but this is not the first occasion when such sentiments have been expressed. It happens at every national or world celebration, or in deed tragedy, it’s happened throughout history. Yet sadly, all too often, we forget and revert to our old ways.
At the coronation of Queen Elizabeth II she said, ‘Coronations are a declaration of our hopes for the future.’ Both the late Queen and our current King have declared a faith in Jesus, our greatest hope for the future.
We can do no better than heed what Jesus declared when he was asked, “which commandment is the most important of all?”
” 29 Jesus answered, “The most important is, ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. 30 And you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.’ 31 The second is this: ‘You shall love your neighbour as yourself.’ There is no other commandment greater than these.” (Mark 12:28b-31)
We pray for our new King as he begins his reign,
And as we do so, we pray for all
Monarchs, Heads of State and leaders of Governments.
May they all use their positions of influence and power
To lead and serve their communities and Nations
With true loyalty, respect and love, compassion and justice for all.
And may we all in our turn
Serve You and each other with those same qualities.
Help us to remember all the good
And positive messages from this Coronation weekend
And above all to follow the example and teachings of
Your Son our Saviour Jesus Christ.