"Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you." - Ephesians 4:32
Americans seem to adore English royalty when they are getting married. We love their beautiful dresses and the frothy details of their fairytale romance. We love it when they have babies, as Princess Kate did this summer.
But would you love it if that baby grew up and had the power to rule over you? What if that were Princess Kate's job today?
As much as I love her style sense, I think I would look for a different skill set if she were to actually rule a nation. I have no clue what she thinks about capital punishment, immigration or how to address world hunger.
Today's English royalty seem to me like publicly funded celebrities. At their worst, they play into our most prurient interests, as we follow their misfortunes. They appear in public drunk, they make commercials for weight watchers, their marriages end and we know way too much about it. Perhaps we even secretly delight in the fact that even these pampered people have their problems.
And then at their best, they can use their celebrity to point us toward more than fashion, as Princess Diana did as she matured in her role, and brought the world's attention to land mines.
But either way, I think we watch royalty celebrities because we like to see our basic human experiences portrayed in broad strokes. And on horseback. By richer, more attractive people who have way bigger houses and who somehow look thin in tweed.
So we rejoice in their over the top weddings and the birth of a new baby. Perhaps we take secret delight in the news that even the prince and princess will lose sleep; that even royal babies cry. Who changes the diapers? Who knows? But for some reason, we want to know.
Let us pray for those who are in the public eye and for those of us who watch them – as a prayer of confession, on all fronts. Amen.
Lillian Daniel, author of When "Spiritual But Not Religious" is Not Enough, has a chapter in the new anthology, What My Mother Gave Me: Thirty-one Women on the Gifts That Mattered Most. Follow her on twitter @lillianfdaniel.