Wednesday, March 15, 2017

REcalling My Royalty

I do have quite a few things in common with Queen Elizabeth II of England. We are the same age, our birthdays are within a few days of each other in June, we were married in the same month, we had our first child in the same year—and my Father was also a king! 

On special occasions and for portraits she wears a crown. I, however, aspire to wear mine all the time and bring mine to Heaven with me! Queen Elizabeth has many crowns (doubtless not as many as her hat collection!). Some are so heavy they are said to give her a headache, like the traditional massive one she wore at her coronation. Some are delicately woven silver and gold and studded with diamonds and precious jewels.

In one respect we differ: I don't carry an ever-present designer handbag/purse like she does. It seems that she never leaves the castle without it—or even while she's resident there. I've secretly wondered exactly what she carries in it!

My Father, the King of kings, and His Son Jesus wear eternal crowns of splendor beyond description, far surpassing the most elaborate crowns of monarchs in the kingdoms of this world. Whether the heavenly crowns are material or spiritual I don't know. They have generously shared a few selective crowns with those of us who are honored and privileged to be followers of Jesus Christ. 

I searched the Scriptures to find out what those crowns are for. The description of our crowns are hidden in Psalm 103:4, 1 Corinthians 9:25, 2 Timothy 4:8, James 1:12, 1 Peter 5:4, Revelation 2:10 and 3:11, Philippians 4:1, 1 Thessalonians 2:19, and Psalm 65:11. I don't want to spoil the joy that you, my reader, will experience when you search for the richness in those Scriptures yourself. Try on each of the crowns to see if they fit you, and if you are worthy to wear them.

We are offered a “crown of righteousness” meant for those who are longing, waiting, watching for Christ's appearance, His glorious return. A “crown for faithfulness under persecution.” A “victor's crown.” A “crown of glory.” A “winners crown” in the race of life. A “crown of lovingkindness and tender mercy.” A “crown to our year of harvest” that signifies overflowing bounty. A “crown which is made up of people” those you have helped to know God and love Him.

The uniqueness of the crowns God has REserved for us is that they are “imperishable, incorruptible, permanent, never can be destroyed and eternal. Our crowns are not like those of the original Olympic winners who were awarded laurel wreaths of leaves and flowers that shrivel up and die. They are far better than the gold medals given to winners today that tarnish, that can be lost or thieves can steal. Queen Elizabeth's crown can be stolen or destroyed. It is still material no matter how costly.

The crowns which God awards us are nothing to strut about. They are not symbols of our achievement or pride. On the contrary, when we arrive in the presence of God we will eagerly cast our crowns at His feet in gratitude for what He has done to bring us to Himself, washed clean and forgiven and made perfect in the likeness of His Son Jesus. We will sing with the angels: “Crown Him with many crowns, the Lamb upon His throne....To Thee be endless praise, for Thou for us hast died; be Thou, O Lord, thru endless days, adored and magnified.”

If while we are in our “earth suits,” our mortal bodies, we go through dark and depressing days of adversity and pain and discouragement on Planet Earth and our crowns might seem invisible or askew, let us nevertheless REjoice in our Royalty, straighten our crowns, and polish our “crown of longing for His appearing.” “Even so, come, Lord Jesus!”

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