Tributes continue to pour in from nations across the globe and from people of different cultures and ethnicities, and it is evident that the Queen was admired and respected by millions throughout the Commonwealth and the world.
For each one, there is a deep sense of sadness and mourning. The members of her immediate family grieve the loss of a mother, grandmother and great grandmother and our sympathies are with them. But we, her subjects, mourn a Queen who was not a distant head of state but one whose reign touched our lives.
Having reigned for seventy years, over eight decades, and worked with fifteen Prime Ministers, the Queen has been a constant for the nation. Most of us have known no other Sovereign. But what has anchored her throughout the course of her life? As a young woman she came to know the Lord Jesus Christ, the Son of God, as her Saviour. As she explained in one of her Christmas broadcasts, it was in the teachings of the Lord Jesus that she found hope.
Her hope is now realised. Her trust in Christ is now rewarded with a home in heaven. We rightly admire her sacrificial service, her integrity, her constancy, her dignity and her humility, but it was not any acts or qualities that made her right with God. It was her faith. The Queen took her place with all of humankind as a sinner, and believed that she needed forgiveness that she could never earn. Her hope was in Christ and the salvation that he offers to everyone. She recognised that it was Christ’s death on a cross which satisfied God’s wrath against human sin, and His resurrection that brings hope, so she embraced the peace with God that comes through faith in Him.
At this difficult time, as we reflect on the life of our beloved Queen, may every reader be challenged to follow the example of her faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Only in Him will we find real comfort and hope.