Friday, March 16, 2012

St. Patty's Day + Green Monster

     I attend a conversation club at the university to help practice my Spanish and often topics discussed are based on holidays or celebrations coming up. Well as you know Saint Patrick's day is tomorrow and when asked why do we celebrate it, I had no clue... So today my post will hopefully help inform those of you who didn't know either.

     We have come to know Saint Patrick's day as everything Irish-- green, gold, shamrocks, leprechauns, and luck. Yet in reality the intended meaning of this day is actually a reminder of spiritual renewal and to offer prayers for missionaries worldwide! I had no idea, but how neat is that, a day to renew ourselves: mind, body, and spirit, in our Creator and remember all those men and women who have dedicated their lives to the mission field-- and a mission field can be even your own home. Philippians 2:14-16 says this,"Do all things without grumbling or disputing, that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, holding fast to the word of life..." My hand is definitely raised for falling short of this daily, but as Christians we are called to be just this, and so thankfully we can because of the cross. Jesus shed His blood so that we may not live in sin, but have grace and cling to His word which is constant. Amen! 

     And who is this guy, Patrick, and why has he become such a celebration? Well, shall we start from the beginning... at the age of 16 he was apparently kidnapped from the Roman British Isles by pirates and then sold into slavery in Ireland. He then worked as a shepard and looked to God for consolation. Finally after 6 years he escaped and fled back home. While back in his homeland, he decided to become a priest and return back to Ireland as a Christian Missionary. God used him to convert many Irish men even alongside much opposition. St. Patrick also used a three-leaf clover to illustrate to others about the Trinity and indeed he was a tool in helping lay foundations for other churches to arise and spread the Word of God. Patrick's served for 30 years and it is believed that March 17th he passed away and thus is the reason why we celebrate on this day. So let tomorrow be a reminder of the true meaning behind us wearing green so we don't get pinched or eat traditional Irish foods, that God's abundant love and perfecting grace that so moved Saint Patrick to dedicate His life to the Lord, is the same for us, as we too are a sweet reflection of Jesus' beauty, and can portray His character in our own lives. Prayers and blessings to you!
                                 

    To finish this post, I thought I would throw-in something green... its called a green monster! I know, it looks and does not sound that appealing. Trust me, I was very very skeptical at first: 1) it's green and 2) I have a hard time drinking things that have weird texture and look funny. But I keep seeing different recipes for them as everyone loves them and that they are super healthy for you. So I had to give it a whirl and I also found that I really enjoyed it-- definitely will be making this again. So here is my version, but go ahead and give it a go,making your own concoction. 

Green Monster: 1 serving
Adapted from the Blog: Clean Eating Chelsey


Ingredients:

3 ice cubes
1/2 frozen banana
5 frozen strawberries
1/2 scoop protein powder (optional)
2 tsp. flax seeds or chia seeds
3 cups spinach
1/2 cup milk (or non-dairy option)
1/2 water

Directions:

Place ice cubes, banana, and strawberries in the blender. Blend to chop them up and then add flax seeds, spinach, and liquid (make sure to add last) and give it a good blend again. Make sure that it is all very well-blended as the spinach needs to chop up very finely. Pour into a large glass and drink up!

This is a great post-workout snack as it is filled with many nutrients or make it your breakfast smoothie that includes some serving of veggies. This will be perfect too for those hot summer days when you are just craving something cold, but want to keep it healthy. Click here to find more recipe ideas.

Happy Saint Patrick's Day and have a blessed weekend!

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