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I'm a redeemed child of God and the momma to four vivacious daughters. I'm passionate about finding hidden blessings in the trials of life, living it out in an honest and open way, while encouraging those around me to believe in better.

10
Mar

the real saint patrick

Do you know the history of St. Patrick? ‘Cuz I had NO idea …

I’ll give you a synopsis as I understand it, pulling out some inspiring thoughts that we can learn from today … but if you’re interested in more details you can click the image below for a more descriptive history {totally worth the read}.

So … first of all, St. Patrick wasn’t Irish. And I don’t think he drank green beer neither!

Maewyn Succat was born in Scotland approximately 387 AD. He grew up in a religious home {his father a deacon, his grandfather a priest}, but he wasn’t a particularly religious child.

At the age of sixteen he was captured by Irish marauders and sold into slavery. For six years he herded sheep as a slave on a mountain. It was during his time of captivity that St. Patrick turned to God for comfort, strength, protection, and wisdom.

“I prayed in the woods and on the mountain, even before dawn. I felt no hurt from the snow or ice or rain … I used to stay out in the forests and on the mountain and I would wake up before daylight to pray in the snow, in icy coldness, in rain, and I used to feel neither ill nor any slothfulness, because, as I now see, the Spirit was burning in me at that time.”

During a dream one night, he was told he’d soon be returning home. Shortly after, he had another dream telling him a ship was ready to bring him home. By faith, he took off on foot 200 miles away. He wrote that God showed him the way and kept him from danger. When he arrived at the port, a ship was there and scheduled to leave that very day.

The history of St. Patrick includes another abduction after his journey at sea. But after two months he escaped and returned to his family in Britain. Once home, he was trained to be a Catholic missionary in France. At some point in his religious training, he had a vision that would bring him full circle.

Not long after his vision, St. Patrick found himself the new bishop of Ireland.

No matter what opposition he faced, he made it his life’s mission to bring Christianity to this country that enslaved him years before. “Through St. Patrick, countless Irish people were converted to Christianity, and through the numerous priests he ordained the word of God spread throughout the Emerald Isle exponentially.”

At his death, believed to be March 17, only one province in Ireland still practiced paganism.

My thoughts?

First, it’s noted in the article that “as a shepherd slave, St. Patrick prayed continuously…as his faith grew his times of prayer grew in turn.” It was in a lonely and hopeless situation of slavery that God revealed Himself to St. Patrick {can I just call him Pat, or would that be disrespectful?}. But I also believe it was because St. Pat was willing to let God work in him. He could’ve chose to remain bitter and angry at his circumstances. He could’ve even blamed God. Instead he softened his heart and allowed God to work in his life.

Second, if you look back on St. Pat’s life, you can see how God was preparing him for his future. As a slave he was able to learn the language, culture, customs, rituals, and traditions of the Irish people. In the end, that’s what ultimately won the respect of the Irish people and led to their conversion.

Third, when St. Pat was back in Ireland as the bishop, he didn’t force his Christian beliefs on the Irish people. He didn’t judge their Druid paganism. Instead, he came alongside them speaking to their hearts and respecting their spirituality, incorporating their beliefs and gently telling them … showing them of a better way to eternity.

Wow. Seriously … wow! 400 AD and the lessons from this man’s life are so relevant to our lives today.

The article says this:

“The history of Saint Patrick is a testament of passion, courage, selflessness and faith. He lived up to and surpassed all Christian virtues.”

I pray the same will be said of me one day!

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5 Responses to “the real saint patrick”

  1. Leslie says:

    LOVE!!! I guess I’d never really heard the history of St. Patrick, either! How totally awesome was he? (And what an odd progression to how we celebrate his holiday today!) Thanks for sharing the story, plus the take-aways. Definitely good, applicable lessons in there. <3
    Leslie recently posted..Radio Silence

  2. Andrea says:

    I did some research on St. Patrick last year, but I love how you summed it up! Also love linking the Trinity to the clover leaves- to keep Jesus as the center of this holiday. Love how He is always what every celebration is about!

  3. Km says:

    Only this year did we really start looking into the historty of this holiday! Knowing st. Pat’s story makes me love and appreciate this holiday even more. Your reflections are fantastic!!

  4. Crystal says:

    Love this!! How weird that this day turned into a crazy day of drinking and leprechauns!

  5. terrie says:

    the same could be said of you today

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