Tuesday, November 26, 2013

St. Patrick

I have started the last two mornings praying the Breastplate of St. Patrick.  I am not catholic, but there is still a value to be gained by knowing the words of great heroes of the faith like Patrick.  We kind of have this picture of Patrick this is really kind of cartoonish.  We imagine him chasing the snakes out of Ireland, and in so doing we lose a large portion of who this man was.  His is a story of God's drawing of a man to himself, and then equipping him for great works.

Patrick was the son of an influential man in England when it was ruled by the Romans.  He was kidnapped from his father's villa and taken as a slave to Ireland.  In his confession he talks about how he saw never really serious about his faith.  It was only after he was taken to the wilderness of Ireland as a sheep herder that he began to really connect with God.  In that solitary space he began to experience a deeper connection to God, than he ever had when he was living his life of privilege.  He spent years in those fields.  God was drawing him to himself and preparing him for great works.  He grew in his faith and communion with God.  When God provides a means of escape he is able to return to his family in England.  I am sure that they do not recognize the man as the boy who had been kidnapped.  He has been fundamentally altered from the person that he had been.  He leaves for studies to become a priest.

He is troubled by a dream of his adopted homeland.  He sees the people of Ireland begging him to return to share the gospel with them.  He returns to Ireland.  He begins to spread the gospel to the people of Ireland.  He becomes the Bishop of Ireland and eventually the patron saint of Ireland.

I believe that God has an amazing story to write for each one of our lives.  Perhaps you are like Patrick.  Perhaps you have never really taken this faith into your everyday life.  You believe that Jesus is good for Sunday, but what does he really have to say about the rest of the week?  God may call you into exile.  He may draw you away from everything you hold dear.  He isn't doing it to be cruel.  I am certain at times you will believe that he is punishing you.  He is preparing you.  He has something amazing for you to be a part of.  Your heart will have to be prepared in the same way that Patrick was prepared by his exile.  When you feel like there is no light at the end of the tunnel, look to God.  Ask him to reveal a greater part of the story to you each and everyday.  When you desire to become one with your creator, then he will slowly reveal himself to you.

1 comment:

  1. I love the power of St. Patricks Breastplate. It makes me feel like I'm ready for anything. Great post!