Are you looking forward to March 17th when many celebrate Saint Patrick’s Day?
There is good reason to celebrate the TRUTH of what we know about Saint Patrick. Legend and historical facts have become intertwined over the years, yet from information I can gather, he was surely used mightily to turn the nation of Ireland from idolatry to TRUTH. Let me share a few pieces of that information.
Patrick was the son of a nobleman who was captured by a band of pirates from his homeland in Britain and was taken to Ireland. Not unlike the story of Joseph in the scripture, he was sold into slavery. As with Joseph and true to His Word, the Lord never left or forsook Patrick (Hebrews 13:5). Patrick had a cruel master who was a pagan warlord. Yet, even at the young age of 16, TRUTH had been planted in his heart. Jesus was his Lord and Savior. Later in life he wrote of this time, “The love and the fear of God and faith increased so much, and the spirit of prayer so grew within me, that I often prayed a hundred times in the day….The Spirit was burning within me.” Patrick so developed his personal relationship with God that he heard what the Spirit of the Lord was saying to him. One day he heard a voice in his dreams telling him, “Behold, the ship is ready for you.” Patrick escaped and made a miraculous journey home.
After Patrick found his way home, he felt a strong calling to return to Ireland. Although his family begged him to never leave them again, he could not forsake the call on his life. Patrick returned to Ireland. Ireland was a pagan nation and Patrick used a pagan feast to demonstrate the power of the one true God. “All over Ireland fires were to be extinguished until a signal blaze was lit by Druidic priests at Tara, the seat of the kings where the chieftains of Ireland had gathered. On the hill opposite the valley from Tara, Patrick lit a fire to celebrate the resurrection of Christ. The Druids warned King Laoghaire that the fire would blaze forever in this land unless it that very night was extinguished. Repeated efforts were made to put out the fire and to kill the one who had ignited it (Patrick). The Druids and magicians used all of their black magic and occult powers, but they had no effect on the one who represented the all-powerful God. As a result, Laoghaire, supreme monarch of Ireland, gave Patrick permission to preach his faith throughout the land. The sacred fire of evangelism burned brightly, dispelling the darkness of paganism.” It seems the Prophesy of the Druids came true; the fire of TRUTH that was lit never was extinguished. In fact it spread from the nation of Ireland as they sent missionaries to Scotland, England, France, Belgium and Germany, preaching the TRUTH of Jesus Christ.
Dear one, this St. Patrick’s Day let us celebrate TRUTH. Know the TRUTH, share the TRUTH, live the TRUTH. You may even want to pray the following prayer recorded as one St. Patrick prayed as he fought the powers of darkness to bring Christ’s light to the Emerald Isle: “Christ, as a light, Illumine and guide! Christ, as a shield, o’er shadow and cover me! Christ, be under me! Christ, be over me! Christ, be beside me, On left hand and right! Christ, be before me, behind me, about me! Christ, this day be within and without me!
Patricia L. Wenzel WOC
Material taken from The Power of One Christ-Like Life by Francis Frangipane