When he died, leaving no children and no apprentice, there was no one left in the village who could fix clocks. Soon various clocks and watches began to break down. Those which continued to run often lost or gained time, so they were of little use. A clock might strike midnight at three in the afternoon. So, many of the villagers abandoned their timepieces.
One day, a renowned clockmaker and repairer came through the village, and the people crowded around him and begged him to fix their broken clocks and watches. He spent many hours looking at all the faulty timepieces, and at last announced that he could repair only those whose owners had kept them wound, because they were the only ones which would be able to remember how to keep time.
So, we must daily keep things wound: that is, we must pray when prayer seems dry as dust, when we are physically tired, when our hearts are heavy, when our bodies are in pain.
We may not always be able to make our "clock" run correctly, but at least we can keep it wound so that is will not forget.
-Madeleine L'Engle, Walking on Water [Italics added]