Raise a Glass
Patrick was born in 380 AD in Scotland (probably). As a teenager, he was kidnapped by wild Irish traders and brought to Northern Ireland as a slave. It was this hardship that brought him to consider his own sins and his need for a Savior. He writes in his Confession, “the Lord opened my mind to an awareness of my unbelief, in order that, even so late, I might remember my transgressions and turn with all my heart to the Lord my God, who had regard for my insignificance and pitied my youth and ignorance.”
Hard times in his life and the loneliness of his slavery brought him to face his own sin. One day he cried out for forgiveness from a Father. As the Lord showed his His presence, he forgave him of his sins. Then Patrick then forgave his captors. He returned to Ireland as a missionary! He was ordained in 432 AD and went back to the “scene of the crime” to bring Christ to the pagans and brutal warlords of Ireland.
His famous prayer, known as the Lorica, or the Breastplate of St. Patrick, shows us what it means to have a personal relationship with Jesus. If you are reading this article stop for a moment. Slow down your thinking to concentrate on the words of his beautiful petition. In my view, there is not a better way of praying through the implications of having a personal relationship with Jesus.
Read this out loud…to yourself…as a prayer.
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 in the heart of every man who thinks of me, Christ in the mouth of every man who speaks of me, Christ in the eye that sees me, Christ in the ear that hears me.
Propose a Toast
So as you raise a glass, be as bold Patrick. Go ahead. Raise your mug and call for for the floor. Clear your throat and, in the best of your Irish accent, propose a toast to the man who brought a stabilizing, family-oriented, wholistic faith to a world in chaos. And, if you dare, speak the words of Patrick’s over at the Sports bar, the dinner table, or the pub. Offer a toast to the Irish missionary with his own remarkable words:
May the Strength of God guide us.
May the Power of God preserve us.
May the Wisdom of God instruct us.
May the Hand of God protect us.
May the Way of God direct us.
May the Shield of God defend us.
May the Angels of God guard us.
Against the snares of the evil one.