Tuesday 17 March 2015

Happy Saint Patrick's Day!

Happy Saint Patrick's Day lovely people! 

I love Saint Patrick's Day. I love being from Northern Ireland and it's fun to see people celebrate this day around the world. 

And there is so much depth and beauty to this holiday and what it remembers. I love Saint Patrick's story - that he returned to Ireland to share the Gospel with the nation he was once a slave in. That being a slave there meant that he knew the language, culture and history and this enabled him to share the Gospel in culturally sensitive ways. 

This includes things like using shamrocks that Irish people knew to point to God, a lot like we see with Paul. Coming up to today I've seen a lot of ideas on how to decorate that included four-leaf "shamrocks" which made me shake my head a little. The shamrock was, legend says, used by Saint Patrick to explain the concept of the Trinity to the Irish.

My favourite article from today about Saint Patrick is this one on Desiring God which includes this paragraph:

Patrick knew the Irish well enough to engage them as they were, and build authentic gospel bridges into their society. He wanted to see the gospel grow in Irish soil, rather than pave it over with a Roman road.

And as I look at my life and ministry here in central and eastern Europe that is my prayer - that we would see an indigenous movement of God again in these nations that reflect the beauty of the culture and people here.

Some photos from today:

Last night involved some baking to celebrate the 17th March and I took the shamrock-shaped sugar cookies to our regular Tuesday morning meeting at work.

Connie, our president's wife, wore green and wrote a little about today on her blog here

And after work I took a walk because it was such a beautiful day - I walked down and across the river into Poland, to the map of Europe in a park.

Our winter really hasn't been bad but it has felt long! So it felt so good today to be out in summer shoes!

And tonight I had the Yorman family over and we ate shepherds' pie with lots of potatoes and drank tea with dessert. It was a fun night!

I'm thankful for the example of Saint Patrick and a day to celebrate where I'm from! 

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