So unless you’ve been offline for ages, you are aware of all the hoopla going on about the royal wedding we had this past weekend (May 19, 2018) . Meghan Markle, an American actress (read “commoner”) married Prince Harry, the Queen’s grandson and sixth in line for the throne.
As a”commoner” (i.e., someone NOT British or royal), she has had to make significant changes in the past several months. She didn’t marry any old Tom, Dick or Harry you know (snicker, sorry, sorry). She married into British Royalty. Meghan’s entire life has changed and she is now living a life of royal duties.
Living as a royal involves rules such as no selfies, no signing autographs under any circumstances, no social media, and no dark nail polish; then there is the fact that the queen expects female family members to curtsy when they enter a room in her presence, even when it’s an informal occasion.
I read a few articles about other changes she had to make because she was marrying into royalty. I was really surprised how many I already knew because my mother pounded proper table etiquette into us as my brother and I were growing up. Her thought was that if she taught us at an early age we would never become embarrassed in a dining situation as a grownup (à la Pretty Woman):
This next section may not interest everyone so if you don’t want to learn about some (some over-the-top) royal etiquette, skip on down to the BLUE heart line, below.
Meghan Markle had (and will continue to have) etiquette and protocol classes which will help her become more polished, elegant and sophisticated. Just a few of the courses:
- How to eat, hold a teacup and how to sit properly at society occasions
- Cutlery instructions such as how to use a knife and fork properly, how to know the difference between an oyster fork and a fish fork, and did you know there is a different spoon for different types of soups? One for clear broths and a more rounded spoon for creamy soups
- Soup has its own etiquette rules such as no slurping and to practice eating it neatly, lifting the spoons to the mouth instead of leaning over the bowl
- Never have food on a fork that is too much for one small mouthful
- No shellfish (the Queen’s rule)
- According to American etiquette expert Myka Meier, “Ms Markle will have to learn to keep her pinkie in while holding a tea cup.” No pinkie finger sticking out
- According to Andrew Morton’s new biography, she practiced tea-drinking at an English tea house in California before meeting the Queen
- To learn to wave her hand in a completely different way,
- According to Ms. Meier, “Ms. Markle won’t be expected to change her accent, but she will be expected to change her vocabulary
- Some vocabulary advice: In Britain, it is pudding, not dessert; sofa, not couch; afternoon tea not high tea; tights not stockings.”
- The proper holding of a clutch bag [a purse]: hold in front of body with both hands, not under shoulder in armpit
- There is a proper heel height (maximum 4in during the day; 6in at night)
- No hems above 2in above the knee.
Sounds exhausting, doesn’t it? And this is just touching on a part of all the rules of protocol and proper conduct she had to learn to become a part of Royalty.
But were you aware that you are a part a kingdom far older than the British monarchy? And that you also should be learning the protocol of that kingdom, the Kingdom of God? He has many good things for His people, but often we don’t know how to act, what to do, or what is required to access many of the blessings.
I’m not talking His love – that is totally unconditional. But many of His promises (and protocol rules) are conditional – i.e., IF you do this THEN you will reap that. Of course this can be negative or positive such as, IF you do not forgive THEN God can’t forgive you (Mark 11:26). Or scriptures of what NOT to say, either in public or in the privacy of your home (anything contrary to God’s Word).
God has a set of commandments, proper “etiquette” if you will, about living and operating in the Kingdom of God. This really isn’t that foreign to you if you’ll think about scripture. This is just a handful.
Most people are acquainted with the Beatitudes in Luke 6 – go re-read them if it has been awhile. Remember Luke 6:37? Judge not, and ye shall not be judged
Or Luke 6:35 But love ye your enemies, and do good, and lend, hoping for nothing again
Malachi 3:10 Bring ye all the tithes into the storehouse, that there may be meat in mine house, and prove me now herewith, saith the LORD of hosts, if I will not open you the windows of heaven, and pour you out a blessing, that there shall not be room enough to receive it.
This next scriptures in Mark emphasis the importance of watching what you say because your words have power.
Mark 11:23 For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed, and be thou cast into the sea; and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass; he shall have whatsoever he saith.
Mark 11:24-26 Therefore I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them. And when ye stand praying, forgive, if ye have ought against any: that your Father also which is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses. But if ye do not forgive, neither will your Father which is in heaven forgive your trespasses.
In the New Testament, Jesus pretty much condensed every single rule to live by down to two commandments:
Matthew 22:37 Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind.
Matthew 22:38 This is the first and great commandment.
Matthew 22:39 And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.
Matthew 22:40 On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.
Dig into God’s ways for ways to operate in His Kingdom – it’s fascinating! The point is, we have just as much work to do as the Duchess of Sussex does but our Kingdom changes will bring more of God’s blessing into our life, with a much better “payoff”!