I apologize for the late post. I am still having technical difficulties with my home computer (more on that tomorrow). For today, let’s just focus on the holiday…
March 17, 2020
38Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together, and running over, will be poured into your lap.” (Luke 6:38)
Today is St. Patrick’s Day. The day on the calendar where everyone wears green and claims to be Irish for 24-hours. Most of my life I participated in the fun aspects of this holiday, from getting pinched as a kid, to hitting the local Irish Pubs as an adult, to always making corned beef and cabbage for dinner. Then, as I turned 30, I moved to Savannah, and for the first time in my life, saw how crazy America gets for St. Patrick’s Day. If you have never been to Savannah for St. Pat’s, you need to plan a trip. The city puts on a green face for the entire month of March. They have the best parade in the country because it is the biggest parade of first responders and military that you will ever see. Firefighters and police from around the country come to Savannah to participate, and with 1 Battalion of the 75th Ranger Regiment stationed in Savannah and always dedicating at least a company to march in the route, it’s a great tribute to our nation’s heroes. One year my wife and I, and some great friends, experienced all of Savannah’s craziness by hitting the pubs, and bars, but since we were ten-years past the peak of our partying, we went, we saw, and we called it an early night. This was all in good fun, but it wasn’t until just a few years ago that I really started to celebrate this holiday for the real reason this day is so important to the world, and I began that journey by properly learning who Saint Patrick really was.
Saint Patrick was a British Christian who was captured at a young age and forced into slavery in Ireland. He escaped slavery and returned to Britain, becoming a cleric and then as an adult, returning to Ireland to change a Celtic polytheism religion to become one of the strongest Christian nations in the world. There are many myths about St. Patrick, like the most famous that he drove all the snakes out of Ireland, which, symbolically, he did, if you look at the serpent as the devil and Saint Patrick brought the Gospel to Ireland, driving out the devil.
Of course, over time, the world has tainted the Feast of Saint Patrick and now we miss the entire purpose of the day: which should be to celebrate a great man who dedicated his life to bringing the Gospel and the name of Jesus to an entire country. As the verse above states: “give, and it will be given to you.” Saint Patrick gave his life to Jesus and following His commands to take the Gospel throughout the world. For his success, Saint Patrick is revered in Ireland and around the world. And once a year we have a holiday where we can choose to drink green bear and eat cabbage, or we can use this opportunity to talk to others about the true meaning of the holiday. I choose to do the later, but it took Jesus turning my life around me to be at the place I am now. I will close out this day with a prayer from the patron Saint himself.
St. Patrick’s Breastplate
Christ with me,
Christ before me,
Christ behind me,
Christ in me,
Christ beneath me,
Christ above me,
Christ on my right,
Christ on my left,
Christ when I lie down,
Christ when I sit down,
Christ when I arise,
Christ in the heart
of every man who thinks of me,
Christ in the mouth
of everyone who speaks of me,
Christ in every eye that sees me,
Christ in every ear that hears me.
What’s stopping you from living a life like Saint Patrick? There has never been an easier time for us to spread the name of Jesus, the truth of the Gospel, and the love of God. At your fingertips every day you have the power to share messages around the world. What are you sharing? What are you spreading through your world every day? If it’s not the love and grace of Jesus, you are letting the enemy win. Start today and celebrate what this Irish holiday is truly about: a man who helped change the world. And let’s start living lives worthy of such blessed men.
Reading plan: Luke 13:22-35
Deeper reading plan: 1 Samuel 26-28
Prayer and meditation: continue to pray for your request from day 1 and thank God for saintly men like Saint Patrick.
Fitness challenge: Tuesday’s are sprint work day. We’re at our max reps for 100 meters. Do a 1/2 mile warm up jog, get a good stretch in and then knock-out 10 sprints of 100 meters at max speed.