When I used to work in a restaurant I hated St. Patrick’s day. I have very distinct (and unpleasant) memories of mopping up beer that had been dyed green and thrown up on the floor of the bar area. But getting pinched for not wearin green and throwing back toxic amounts of Guinness are a far cry from anything resembling a head nod to the life of the historical St. Patrick.
He was a lot more like the Apostle Paul than a leprechaun. He was a pastor/missionary with a passion to make Jesus famous. One historian wrote, “He found Ireland heathen and left it Christian.” In his lifetime He planted hundreds of churches, and baptized over a hundred thousand people. He loved God’s Word and quoted it extensively in his writings.
Legend has it that he used the iconic three-leaf clover to explain the mystery of the trinity to those he ministered to. And even though the whole banishing snakes off the island thing probably isn’t true I am comforted by the idea of it. I am with Indiana Jones–I hate snakes!
A much better celebration of his life would be to share your faith with someone who doesn’t know Christ! And I am stoked to preach a gospel message at Skull Church on St. Patrick’s day because his life was all about the gospel. (And as an added bonus I won’t smell like beer puke at the end of the night!) And don’t get sideways with the whole “saint” thing, in God’s eyes all his kids are saints! (Ephesians 2:19)
For more reading on the life of this killer guy–check out this article.