Last month Tom Hooper released his movie The King’s Speech, written by David Seidler. The film tells the story of King George VI, played by Colin Firth, who took the throne a short time before World War II, before Churchill became Prime Minister and while Hitler was amassing power. England, indeed the free world needed a King, a statesman, and while George VI had moral fortitude, he also had a stammer. He’d be the first king to broadcast his voice widely on the radio, and at a time when all of England would be in need of comfort and resolution. And so the story of The King’s Speech involves George VI and his unlikely friendship with a failed, Australian actor named Lionel Logue, played by Geoffrey Rush. Logue is sought out by George IV and his wife to help the soon-to-be King through his oratory problems.
A critical scene in the movie takes place near the end, when Logue is walking George VI through the paces of the crowning ceremony. They are alone in Westminster Abbey. George VI is stammering through his lines, gets up from the throne and throws a tantrum, stuttering on about how the people need a voice and he hasn’t got one, about how he isn’t fit to be king. He turns from his tirade to see Lionel Logue sitting sloppily on his throne, head in hand as though he were bored with the tirade. And the anger of King George VI worsens. He threatens the actor, commanding him to get out of the chair. Logue contends that he will not, that the man before him has no authority to dismiss him. George VI yells in anger that he does indeed have the authority, that he is the King, and Logue’s eyes light up. The King could not be King until he himself believed he was fit for the role. The throne meant nothing unless it meant something to the King. The people would not follow the King unless the King stepped into the authority they had given him.
And this is how it is with stepping into the role of a creator. Made in the image of God, able to speak something into nothing, able to create solutions to the worlds problems, we stammer about in disbelief, waiting for somebody else to take responsibility for our lives and for the lives we have been given to care for. We are all creators, but too many reject the God-given right to create and instead become consumers, hiding in the safety of some government, some corporation, some self-help philosophy to take care of us. And so why should we be surprised when we turn around and somebody is sitting in our chair, dictating how our marriage will go, how our career will go, whether or not we can have peace with our neighbors? We shouldn’t be surprised. We handed them our authority.
Until we believe we are creators, nothing will change save what some other creator changes for us. We are their servants, the consumers of whatever fate is dictated to us by the bold, be they good or bad.