Kiss Me...I Might Be Irish

:)

That was the saying on a balloon I saw at Kroger.  And it was also the sentiment in the elementary school we kids went to in New Jersey.  St Matthew’s was an Irish parish (maybe because the founding pastor was Irish, Fr Duffey), so our sports teams were the “Fighting Irish.”  Anyway, the sentiment was that everyone was Irish on St Patrick’s Day. I remember us Renner girls (mom’s maiden name = Galuszka; so you do the “ethnic” math ) spraying our hair green, putting on our already green uniforms, and heading next door to school.  (Yes, we lived next to the church and school!).  We FELT Irish…even if we were really German & Polish!

Everyone was indeed “Irish” at St Matthews on St Patrick’s Day, except for the few rebellious students and even teachers who wore orange instead of green.

But as an adult, I haven’t paid much attention to St Patrick’s Day…because I came to realize that for many adults it’s an excuse to drink and get out of control.  So I enjoyed the decorations and taught my children about the Trinity by using the shamrock (as tradition says St Patrick did).   But I basically gave it a token nod…that was until recent years.

I came to have a greater appreciation for St Patrick himself through a song/prayer I found while doing a Bible study on some little words of Scripture called prepositions.  In the Bible, these little words often show the relationship of the Lord and His people.  But rather than bore you with grammatical information, let’s take a look at this precious song.

St. Patrick’s Breastplate*

There’s a Celtic hymn, usually attributed to St Patrick, that is sung around his feast day (March 17th).  Notice how the highlighted words (prepositions) show the close relationship to Christ that we believers enjoy.  In a very real sense this is a celebration of what is already true.  It’s also a prayer for our own realization of these wonderful truths.

Perhaps you would like to learn it and recite it often to celebrate the truth of our union with Christ by faith. Or maybe you’d like to carry it a step further, like one friend of mine, and teach it to your children or grandchildren.  Then you can recite it together.

Christ be beside me, Christ be before me,

Christ be behind me, King of my heart;

Christ be within me, Christ be below me,

Christ be above me, never to part.

Christ on my right hand, Christ on my left hand,

Christ all around me, shield in the strife;

Christ in my sleeping, Christ in my sitting,

Christ in my rising, light of my life.

Christ be beside me, Christ be before me,

Christ be behind me, King of my heart;

Christ be within me, Christ be below me,

Christ be above me, never to part.

* There are many variations of wording to St Patrick’s Breastplate.

 

BIBLE STUDENTS:

Take a look at Psalm 139.  There are some striking similarities to St Patrick’s Breastplate

Find the prepositions and bask in the completeness of God’s love and care for His people!