Today is St. Patrick’s Day, a time to commemorate the former slave who escaped his masters, only to come back later to bring Christianity to the whole nation of Ireland. By extension, it is a time to honor all missionaries.
St. Patrick, who lived in the 400s A.D., the time of the early church, was impressive for lots of reasons. He is the author of the remarkable meditation/poem/hymn St. Patrick’s Breastplate. It includes these lines, calling on Christ to be present with him in every dimension of his life:
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.
Applying so many prepositions to Christ reminds me of an object lesson that a Danish pastor offered at the conference I spoke at recently. [Read more…]