Today all over the world, people will be celebrating St Patrick’s Day, many not realising what an influential Christian leader he was. One of his most well known writings was called the Breastplate of St Patrick, based on Ephesians 6:14. It’s very long but the verses that I find most helpful are these:
Christ be with me, Christ within me, Christ behind me, Christ before me,
Christ beside me, Christ to win me, Christ to comfort and restore me.
Christ beneath me, Christ above me, Christ in quiet, Christ in danger,
Christ in hearts of all that love me, Christ in mouth of friend and stranger.
I bind unto myself the Name, The strong Name of the Trinity;
By invocation of the same.
The Three in One, and One in Three, Of Whom all nature hath creation,
Eternal Father, Spirit, Word: Praise to the Lord of my salvation,
Salvation is of Christ the Lord.
It just so happens that with the dates of Easter changing every year, we are thinking this week of the Passion of Christ, how Jesus resolutely turned his face towards Jerusalem and walked the way of the cross for each of us.
Passion is an odd word, we talk about being passionately fond of someone, or of football, or a food such as chocolate. Passion really means having a deep emotional tie or feeling for someone or something. St Patrick was passionate about the Gospel, he was passionate about Christ, he lived his faith to the uttermost, witnessing and bringing kings, noblemen and labourers to Christ.
What is your passion I wonder? What would you be prepared to stand up for and be counted? If Christ is our answer – then the amazing truth is we do not do it alone, Christ who walked the road of suffering for our freedom walks with us and gives us the strength and courage to continue despite all the odds. That’s what St Patrick found and what is still true for us today. If we are passionate for Christ, he is equally passionate for us!
Please use the Prayer of St Patrick above as your prayer today.
You can download this Prayer for the Week here
Prayers for March written by Denise Creed
Picture: free image from the internet