Moore College joins today with men and women around the world in thanking God for the life, service and Christian witness of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. We mourn the loss of our Queen but we rejoice in the home-call of our sister in Christ.
The broadcast of a speech made by Princess Elizabeth on her twenty-first birthday, dedicating her life — whether long or short — to the service of her people, is being replayed by news services all around the world. It has a special poignancy on this day. This is a promise she has kept fulsomely and joyfully. Australians of all political persuasions agree that she has been tireless in service, committed to the welfare of her people, and an example of dignity, strength and grace, both in moments of joy and triumph and in those more difficult and even tragic. Those who have had the privilege to meet her have invariably spoken of her personal warmth, her genuine interest in each person with whom she speaks, and her sense of humour. The most regal woman in the world never took herself too seriously.
But we have a special reason to give thanks for her as the news of her death spreads around the world. Queen Elizabeth trusted the Lord Jesus. Her Christmas speeches attest her confidence and hope, which rested in him alone. They just seemed to get clearer and bolder in the last few years while always remaining perfectly appropriate and never feeling “forced”. They were a natural expression of the core commitment of her life. Her 2011 speech was a wonderful example of that. She said,
Although we are capable of great acts of kindness, history teaches us that we sometimes need saving from ourselves — from our recklessness or greed. God sent into the world a unique person — neither a philosopher nor a general (important though they are) but a Saviour, with the power to forgive.
Forgiveness lies at the heart of the Christian faith. It can heal broken families, it can restore friendships and it can reconcile divided communities. It is in forgiveness that we feel the power of God’s love.
Queen Elizabeth sought to live out her life of service, despite the extraordinary circumstances of her position, as a humble disciple of Jesus. For that example and for her many encouragements to do the same, we can give great thanks to God.
At this time of mourning and thanksgiving, we commit ourselves to pray for the King and his family in their personal grief. As one former politician tweeted this morning, we are confident that God saved the Queen, we now pray God save the King.
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