This passage is one that has changed little in practice over the last 1500 years among Benedictine monasteries. It is a simple, yet powerful, ritual . . . a changing of the guard of sorts. It functions to give an eternal perspective on what might otherwise be seen as only a human endeavor. Such sanctification of the mundane is one genius of the Rule. A Benedictine finds her true life in God through each and every aspect of the day--nothing is "secular"; nothing is profane.
To imbue the details of our experience with an awareness of the Divine Presence is a goal of Benedictine community. The slow, daily work of obedience whittles away at the illusion that our life is our own, that we do anything outside the purview of our life in God. And it is in the small things of everyday life, in a 3 x 5 card laminated in a drawer in the dining room, that we find the secret hidden in plain sight.