Every year, the FOMLs present me with a Father's Day crown. It is made of construction paper, with each of the kids writing a message to me on their section of the crown. I wear it because it is awesome. Then I leave it on my lampshade until the next year.
Yes, as evident by the crown, I am indeed the "King of the Castle." *trumpet fanfare*
This - this is my Kingdom, my land, my castle. I rule with an iron fist. My word is law. All those in my presence show proper deference with honor and respect.
Well at least for today. If my EC signs off on it.
Today we spent Sunday School talking about King Mosiah and the political systems in Zarahemlah. Mosiah was so worried about the prospects of another king succeeding him. that he talked the people into abandoning the monarchy entirely, and moving to a systems with elected judges.
King Mosiah was a good king, as was King Benjamin before him - both because they fused elements of Theocracy into their Monarchy. They both followed the teachings and laws of God. (Nowadays we can't even get out government to follow the laws of the land!) Bu it was the theocracy that made their monarchies effective. After studying about this mixture of political systems, I decided something important:
I don't want to be "King of the Castle."
I want to be "Theocrat of the Castle."
No, it is not as catchy, and you have never heard that expression before, but it fits much better. A "Theocrat" is defined as someone who practices Theocracy.
Theocracy: A form of government in which God is recognized as the supreme civil ruler, with God's laws being interpreted by the ecclesiastical authorities.
That's my house, right? My castle? In my home I am the priesthood leader. With my EC, we are expected to lead this small society based on the laws of God.
Granted, the rest of society is not part of this theocracy - and outside my home I need to play by their rules - but my home can be a tiny theocracy in which we recognize God as our leader. As "Theocrat of the Castle", I have the obligation to lead my family according to God's law, as revealed to my leaders, and as revealed to my EC and I. That is a lot different than how a King runs things. But we will save a fortune on torture equipment.
For example: If you are a King, and someone errs against you, you get to slap them in chains, and throw them in the dungeon to rot. A Theocrat gets to "reprove betimes with sharpness, when moved upon by the Holy Ghost, and then showing afterward an increase in love..." (D&C 121:43) It is a little different style. This example alone shows the impossibility of being a worthy monarch without adopting elements of theocracy. Even in disciplining our children, one of the members of the Godhead needs to sign of on what we are doing.
Sadly, I find myself behaving like a monarch occasionally. I make unilateral decision, I dole out excessive punishments, I make up laws on the fly. (No eight wives though - still on my first.) When I rule like a King I expect and demand things. I expect people to read my mind. I demand they do things. I expect things to be done for me according to my whim. Have you ever heard about a man getting upset because the dinner wasn't on the table at a certain time? That is a King.
Theocrats are kind, patient, long suffering, full of charity, etc... (D&C 121) (Sometimes we refer to theocrats as Priesthood holders.)
It surely must be important to rule like a theocrat, rather than a king, because about half the talks in General Conference in April talked about how to do exactly that. (Sadly, I hadn't invented the term "Theocrat of the Castle" yet, so nobody was able to use it.
Today I will celebrate Father's Day, as the "Theocrat of the Castle", and try to earn that title from here on out.
But I'm still wearing the crown that my
Happy Father's Day to you all.