Earth’s proud empires

Dear Friends,

It’s been another exciting week in British politics, with government ministers resigning over the proposed Brexit deal and speculation of a no confidence vote on the Prime Minister’s leadership. Although it’s the kind of excitement that makes you long for boredom instead! Some at least can see a funny side, and comedian David Baddiel tweeted: “I feel I should take the job of Brexit Secretary now. If only so that when I resign, Theresa May can finally be proved right that No Deal is better than a Baddiel.”

The uncertainty is destabilising and it’s easy to get anxious and even to panic. We need to remember that all earthly kingdoms will ultimately disappoint, whether that’s the ‘kingdom’ of the European Union or the United Kingdom or a transatlantic alliance with the United States or a free trade deal with the rest of the world. But there is a kingdom that will outlast them all, “the kingdom of our Lord and of his Christ, and he will reign for ever and ever” (Revelation 11:15).

As I reflected on these events a phrase came into my head: “earth’s proud empires”. I eventually found it in the hymn, ‘The day Thou gavest, Lord, is ended’. The final verse reads: “So be it, Lord: Thy throne shall never, like earth’s proud empires, pass away; Thy kingdom stands, and grows for ever, till all Thy creatures own Thy sway.” And so we pray, “Thy kingdom come.”

Yours warmly, in Christ,
Chris Hobbs (Senior Minister/Vicar)