Years ago when I wanted to get away to study, I would go to a Benedictine monastery in eastern Georgia, it was sparse liven, but there were no distractions. If you were staying there, you had to keep their morning and evening prayer schedule. It was always a powerful time to center myself in Christ. The ritual of a person becoming a Benedictine monk is powerful. The monk will stretch out on the floor before the altar in the very place where his coffin will be when he dies. He is covered in a funeral pall, a liturgical cloth, and the death bells ring announcing the death of a brother and then there is a time of silence. The monk then sings Colossians 3:3, “For you have died. Your life is hidden with Christ and God.” Then there is silence. They sing the words of Psalm 118:17, “I shall not die but live and declare the works of the Lord.” After the resurrection proclamations, the monks shout the words from Ephesians 5:15, “Awake you who sleep. Arise from death and Christ will give you life.” Then the bells begin to ring loudly and joyfully, and the monk will rise up to new life. The funeral pall will fall off, the white robe of the Benedictine order will be placed on him, and he is welcomed to his new life. When we became Christians we buried the old life of sin, and we were raised up to new life in Christ. Sin and death and evil have been defeated by Jesus. He was raised from the dead. You belong to Him. You have been raised with Him. Stay focused on Jesus.
– Dr. Tim Thompson