It is said that Queen Marie Antoinette would disguise herself as a commoner and go from party to party in the villages to learn how the people truly lived. However, she was never able to get away with her disguise, they always figured out who she was. Do you know why? Because she “walked like a queen.”

Jeremiah 23:1-6 gives us two different descriptions of God in our lives…one as shepherd in verse three and one as king in verse five. What a paradox of descriptions…a shepherd for the common and a King to reign over the Kingdom.

We traditionally end the church year celebrating Christ as King, who rules the Universe. We then begin the next church year by celebrating the baby, born in a stable, placed in a manger, worshiped there by shepherds from the hillside and Kings from the Orient.

I am reminded of King Olav, the former King of Norway, known as the “People’s King,” for his personal connections with the people of Norway. He needed no disguise to go among his people. He just talked to them, showed interest in them, walked among them as friend and humble leader. As educators or anyone who works with people, we too must be mindful of those in our care, those we relate to, those who need us to know them for who they are, be they students, colleagues, or families.

May we strive to live like Christ; to love those lost and alone, like a shepherd tending lost sheep or a King tending people feeling devalued and afraid. For we are a people, needing a King to lead the way and a Shepherd to find us when we stray.

You and I are called to walk like Christ. We need no disguise. We just need love. If we walk and serve in love, then wherever we walk, through us, others will see Christ, the true “People’s King.”