Lessons from the Serenity Prayer

Gratitude Day 506

Sat., Sept. 5, 2020

Proverbs 20:24 – A person’s steps are from the Lord; how then can people understand their path?

There is SO. MUCH. we CANNOT CONTROL.

Yep.

So much.

This has been highly re-enforced in our lives the last six months.

While we’d like to control many, many things, there are some things hugely out of our control. It’s so easy to spend lots of time of things we can’t control vs. what we can control.

I get it. We want to change people’s minds. We want to advocate for our position. We want to place our fingerprint on things we are passionate about.

I also try to do these things.

It’s OK to advocation. Encourage. Petition.

As hard as it is, sometimes, we need to let go. Know when to let be. Accept something as out of our domain.

The Serenity Prayer is a short little prayer that reminds us of this. Theologian Dr. Reinhold Niebuhr is often attributed as it’s author. Its source might have come from one of Niebuhr’s students and collaborators, Winnifred Crane Wygal. Wygal included the prayer in a newspaper article in the 1930’s. Later, it was included in a 1940’s book of worship in an altered form.

The most popular version of the prayer is a shortened prayer:

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference.

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference.

Knowing the difference. Not always easy.

May I encourage you to take a few minutes and listen to a great reminder of this? It’s performed by The Skit Guys. Generally, their little ditties are fun and make you laugh. This one is a bit more serious. And a way for us to ponder what we can and cannot change.

For wisdom to discern what I can change and what I cannot change, I am grateful.

Blessings –

Dianne

Holy God – in a time and place where there are many things we cannot change, gently encourage us to keep perspective. God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference. Amen.  

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