CORONATION DAY? Not very old at the time, but I have a few memories of celebrating at school.
Silver Jubilee? No; living abroad.
Golden Jubilee? Only ten years ago but, sadly, but can’t remember very much about it.
Diamond Jubilee this year? Definitely, watched every bit of television coverage available.
Six decades of selfless service and commitment of Queen Elizabeth to her people; right and proper
to observe the anniversary.
I was challenged throughout that there is a tremendous responsibility upon me, and my fellow –
Christians as, at a distance, I joined in the festivities.
In his first letter to Timothy, the apostle Paul reminds the younger man that ‘requests, prayers,
intercession and thanksgiving (should) be made for everyone, for kings and all those in authority.’
In the first century AD, bitter persecution of Christ’s followers was the normal state of affairs. To be
known as a believer was dangerous. Nevertheless, men of standing and influence were prepared to
defend their cause and declare their continuing allegiance to the one they acknowledged as Lord
Such an individual, Theophilus of Antioch, is quoted as saying, ‘The honour that I will give to the
Emperor is all the greater, because I will not worship him, but I will pray for him. I will worship
no-one but the true and real God.’ A public announcement like that was bound to bring a swift
reaction from the powers-that-be.
What about the here and now?
If we, in the churches, accept that the words of Scripture are just as relevant to our generation
and culture as they were when originally written, then this exhortation to pray for our superiors
and country still stands.
For what reason? ‘ ... that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness.’
(See chapter 2, verses 1 and 2.)
Each one of us wants the best for ourselves, our families and those we work with. We do not want
friction and war. It is indeed a challenge to us, then, to daily bring before God the needs of the
hour, remembering both our Royal Family and our government.
I shall therefore continue to do my best, and anticipate that all those who sit with me in the
pews will do the same, to pray for the stability of our political system, and that wisdom, fairness
and sensitivity will mark the judgments and plans of our leaders and law-makers.
I shall pray for peace in every province and harmony in every home. I shall pray that every young
person residing within our borders will have opportunities for a sound education, permanent
employment and a fulfilled life.
In addition, there is another matter weighing heavily upon my mind.
I shall pray that Christians will be recognised and accepted in our current society, that the contempt
and discrimination aimed at them will disappear, that they will be seen not as Bible-bashing killjoys,
but as men and women with a deep concern for the good of everyone around them, including the
spiritual, moral and social wellbeing of the population.
In so doing, I am demonstrating to the world at large that I am a true disciple of Jesus Christ.
Thankfully, I am not alone.