In an average lifetime, there are only a handful of momentous national and international events, where we can all collectively recall and remember when and how we heard the news.

9/11 was one such moment.

The death of Queen Elizabeth II was another.


For 70 years, the Queen has been a constant in the UK, in the Commonwealth, and across the nations of the world. While Prime Ministers, Presidents and politicians have come and gone, she has provided continuity and stability – offering us dignity, humility and integrity where it has sometimes been sorely lacking in other spheres of leadership.  

Whatever you may think about the Royal Family and its many failings, the Monarchy and its quirky constitutional role, or the British Empire and its ongoing ramifications, it is difficult to have anything but admiration for the Queen as a woman.

When she made her vows in her Coronation Oath, she felt the weight of what she was taking on – and she was true to her word, never reneging on the commitments she had promised to keep. She recognised her responsibilities as Head of State – and she sought to outwork them right up until the end.

It is any wonder, then, that so many wanted to bid her a fond farewell at her funeral? Over 500 Heads of State attended in person. More than one million people lined London’s streets. And a record four billion watched worldwide. The figures are mind-blowing.


However …

While we were saying goodbye, heaven was saying hello.

While we were watching the huge queue of people entering Westminster Hall and filing past her coffin, she was entering God’s heavenly throne room.

While her crown was being placed on the altar, never to be worn by her again, she was taking up the crown of life, which is promised to those who love the Lord – and looking to Jesus, whose crown on the cross was one of thorns, not jewels.

While we were mourning the ending of a reign that felt as if it would go on forever, the King of Kings was welcoming her into his eternal reign, which will never end.

It was the Queens’s unwavering faith in Jesus that undergirded and sustained her. Without it, she would not have lasted the course.

In Isaiah 46:4, God promises this to his people: “Even to your old age and grey hairs, I am he, I am he who will sustain you.

How true this was for the Queen. How true it could be for us too.


You might not yet be in old age, and you may not yet have grey hairs, but who or what is sustaining you? Is it faith in Jesus, as it was for the Queen?

As ever, constructive comments are welcome below.

Please note: This is my ‘thought for the month’ reflection for September. (You can find all my ‘thought for the month’ reflections here.)

Photo by Sabine van Erp from Pixabay



  1. Mary Oakes Reply

    This is a great reflection. Thanks for sharing it and what a great question to reflect on – what does sustain me? Coffee?! Friends and family? Work? Or do I look to God completely for enduring sustenance. Thanks for asking!

    • Joanna Watson Reply

      I think a lot of us are sustained by coffee in the short term, Mary, but it won’t be enough if we’re going to keep being sustained for the long haul!

  2. Thank you for this reflection Jo. The Queen was indeed a great example to all of us. I know that I cannot get through my day without God being front and centre. When I forget that, somehow my day doesn’t go as well.

    • Joanna Watson Reply

      This is so true, isn’t it, Janet? Thanks for the prompt to put God at the front and centre of each day!

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