Keeping no score of wrongs...
I must admit that I do enjoy visiting cathedrals – especially ones that I don’t know very well. Visiting Gloucester not long after Christmas, I took the opportunity to have a proper look around the Cathedral.
I discovered that it contains the tomb of King Edward II. He became king when his father, Edward I, died while campaigning against the Scots in 1307. His father had been widely respected. Not so Edward, who seems to be remembered mainly for falling out with powerful barons, losing the Battle of Bannockburn to Robert the Bruce, and lavishing gifts on his favourites at court while neglecting his wife, Princess Isabella of France. She took her revenge when she returned from a diplomatic visit to her brother with not only her lover, a nobleman whom Edward had exiled, but also an army. Supported by several nobles who shared her low opinion of her husband, she deposed him in January 1327 and had their son, also Edward, crowned in his place.
A sign next to the once-magnificent tomb that Edward III had built for his father in the Cathedral tells visitors that Edward was imprisoned in Berkeley Castle and probably murdered there soon afterwards. It goes on: Edward’s poor judgement lost him the confidence of his people and the throne. How can we help others find a way forward in life when everything seems to have gone wrong?
An interesting thought. We may not have thrones to lose, but I suspect that most of us can probably think of times when we’ve made mistakes too, and perhaps wish that we had done things differently. St Paul wrote in I Corinthians 13 that “Love keeps no score of wrongs.” God, he reminds us, never gets tired of our new beginnings.