It's interesting to us in these days especially, I think, to imagine how Patrick chose to spend his time. He would have been entirely dependant on God and presumably others to feed him. He would have been devoid of all stimulation and entertainment. He records later that what he did was pray, all day and all night. One hundred times in daytime. One hundred times at night. We worked this out at our little Scripture Union in school last week: that's one pray every seven minutes.
Prayer is definitely becoming my theme for Lent. And Lent seems to be becoming C-time for us all. I often complain to myself, make excuses to myself, that I haven't time to read my Bible, or sit for a decent time meditating on that reading, listening to the God who loves me extravagantly. Well, aren't we getting more time than we've ever had? I sincerely hope that we won't have six years to combat loneliness and deprivation, but I do also sincerely pray that we'll look back on these weeks of self-isolation with recognition of how they brought us closer to God.
I even think that these weeks will bring us closer to others as well. We can, as so many are saying now, use our multitudinous communication technologies to communicate with each other. So, a very happy St Patrick's day to you all. I wish you lots of prayer time! We'll be reading this book, and praying these words of Patrick's too,
I bind unto myself today
The power of God to hold and lead,
His eye to watch, his might to stay,
His ear to hearken to my need.
The wisdom of my God to teach,
His hand to guide, His shield to ward,
The word of God to give me speech,
His heavenly host to be my guard.