A Man, a Mission, and a Celebration

Even if you are not Irish, today's your lucky day! In honor of St. Patrick's Day, we're offering a one-day, 10% discount on all stock products at Outreach.com.

Speaking of St. Patrick, it's only fitting to look at the man and his mission. Legend tells us that Patrick cast the snakes out of Ireland, battled Druid priests, and used a shamrock to teach the Trinity.

Any truth to all that?

While it would be fun to hear St. Patrick go all Indiana Jones on the writhing reptiles ("Snakes. Why'd it have to be snakes?") the truth is there were no snakes in Ireland to begin with. Myth busted. What about those epic throw downs with Druids? Probably not, since Patrick himself speaks of paying kings and chieftains for the right to travel on their lands. That just leaves the shamrock. While there's no hard proof of Patrick's object lesson, it's not out of the realm of possibility. After all, Patrick needed to explain the difference between Christianity's Triune God and the pagan's triple-deity beliefs. And there are plenty of shamrocks in Ireland...

So if the legends are just, well, legends, what do we know about the real St. Patrick?

Patrick was born in 387 A.D. His father was a church leader, but Patrick had no interest in the Christian faith. At age 16 he was captured by a raiding party and enslaved in Ireland. Sometime during his six years of captivity, he embraced true faith in Jesus Christ. In his Confessio, Patrick writes, "... I know for certain, that before I was humbled I was like a stone lying in deep mire, and he that is mighty came and in his mercy raised me up and, indeed lifted me up and placed me on top of the wall. And from there I ought to shout in gratitude to the Lord for his great favors in this world and forever..."

Patrick's shout echoes throughout history and can still be heard today. He escaped his bondage, but later returned to Ireland to preach the Gospel. His greatest outreach was to tribal chieftains, reasoning that once the leader turned to Christ, his clan would soon follow. His faithful influence planted the seeds of faith that would blossom some two hundred years after his death. By the 7th century, Ireland had become a Christian nation... and St. Patrick would be immortalized.

So today while you check out all the great stock resources at Outreach.com and save some green, stop and consider the man who dedicated his life to bringing the Gospel to a dark land. God's not done with our world. It may be that you can follow Patrick's example and shine the light of Christ to today's dark world.

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