The visitor to a Father’s cell noticed a number of clocks with different times on them on his desk and asked the Father why he had this.

The Father replied, “Every clock has a time for the country each of my spiritual children is in.
So, in the prayer I follow their day and night and what movement of that God given day they are journeying through. However, for me personally, the clocks ticking remind me now of something else. It is a reminder that ever more rapidly my time here is slipping away in the eternity. Time and time again, pilgrims caught up in the rush of this modern Western Society are telling me they have no time. I always reply to them that we all have the same time. The hour in front of us is all that we ever have, because we do not know the hour of the watch in which the Master will come and call us.

Yesterday a young person told me they could not imagine the end of their life. It is so far away. That is the young person’s time. Many middle aged people begin to look back in time and are thankful for some things. However, they also begin to see more clearly the sins and mistakes of their life. Older people begin to look forward towards the finishing line. They come to understand that time is an illusion. It is like sand running through our fingers. All the time ringing in our ears, “Remember you are but dust, and to dust you shall return.”

It is a very subtle moment indeed, but certainly the solitaries come to realize, even if it is many years in advance, that they are not going yet, but getting ready to go. They begin ever so gradually in their prayer to prepare for the departure of the soul from the body.

You should not imagine that in the House of God the gate of Heaven is a cause of sadness for us. We wait in joyful hope.

Father Richard

(English punctuation & grammar slightly corrected from the original)