From my memory of childhood fairy tales, kings and queens were nearly always portrayed as cruel tyrannical villains. Thus, it was heartening when poor downtrodden folks won a victory over the proud aristocrats.
This perception from childhood made it difficult for me to engage respect and appreciation for the Royal Family when I first arrived in Scotland, but childhood perceptions are often flawed.
Queen Elizabeth II is the longest reigning monarch in British history. At age 90, she still works 40 hours a week, feeds her own dogs instead of delegating the chore to someone else, and rides a horse. She attends church regularly, even while on vacation. She doesn’t use profanity.
Being a monarch does not insulate anyone from grief, problems, and trouble. The Queen called 1992 ‘Annus Horribilis.’ Tragedies for the Queen included a fire in Windsor Castle; Prince Andrew’s separation from his wife; Princess Anne’s divorcing her husband, and a biography of Diana which confirmed her unhappy marriage to Charles and resulting affair, and Charles’ affair with Camilla. Queen Elizabeth’s response was to thank people for their prayers.
The Queen celebrated Jesus’ Birthday in 2013 by stating, “It is my prayer that on this Christmas Day we might all find room in our lives for the message of the angels and for the love of God through Christ our Lord.”
The Queen noted in her Christmas 2015 address, “Despite being displaced and persecuted throughout His short life, Christ’s unchanging message was not one of revenge or violence, but simply that we should love one another.”
Example through leadership is important to Queen Elizabeth. She takes her example from Jesus, quoting: “God sent His only Son to serve, not to be served. He restored love and service to the center of our lives in the person of Jesus Christ.”
Happy 90th Birthday on April 21st to Queen Elizabeth II, a queen who serves the King.
(Thanks to Author Alan T McKean http://www.amazon.co.uk/Alan-T.-McKean/e/B00BR1PM5Y/ref=ntt_dp_epwbk_0 for the pictures of Balmoral Castle where Queen Elizabeth stays when she’s in Scotland.)