Serenity Prayer

I long for serenity that does not leave me, even when things get hectic.  I find the Serenity prayer helpful in giving me the perspective that not all things need changing, not all things can be changed, but always God is with me in the midst of life.

I love the many ways you can find this prayer on crosses and on beautiful pictures of country roads winding through trees.  What a gift this prayer has been to me and to many.  Perhaps it will be a gift to you.  There are several forms you will find it in.  Here are two.  Blessings.

The simplified version frequently seen, reads:

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.

The following is the Serenity Prayer as originally written for a meeting of the Federal Council of Churches in 1943 by Reinhold Niebuhr.

God, give us grace to accept with serenity
the things that cannot be changed,
Courage to change the things
which should be changed,
and the Wisdom to distinguish
the one from the other.

Living one day at a time,
Enjoying one moment at a time,
Accepting hardship as a pathway to peace,
Taking, as Jesus did,
This sinful world as it is,
Not as I would have it,
Trusting that You will make all things right,
If I surrender to Your will,
So that I may be reasonably happy in this life,
And supremely happy with You forever in the next.
Amen.                                                                                  Reinhold Niebuhr  (1892-1971)

I have wondered however, if it should be called the Grace Prayer – for it is with God’s grace that we are given serenity.  Niebuhr never copyrighted the prayer which is why it can be found in different forms and not attributed to his name.   You can learn more by reading the book about the prayer, The Serenity Prayer: Faith and Politics in Times of Peace and War, written by Elisabeth Sifton, his daughter.  There are a number of highly rated books on how the serenity prayer has impacted lives.

I obtained the entire prayer from this website:  Serenity_Prayer.

About Sonja Roberts Dalglish

I love people, math, physics, and theology. I love mysteries which may explain the list above. I am a polio survivor, having had the disease in August 1954. The vaccine was declared safe in April 1955. I am very pro vaccines. They have increased the health and well being of the world. Presently, I am living just west of Corpus Christi, in Kingsville. For naturalists, this seems to be where the coastal plane and the Wild Horse Dessert meet. It is flat which gives us beautiful sunsets. One of our concerns is climate change. We are already hot and dry and getting hotter and dryer. The cattlemen and women are having to graze fewer livestock these days.
This entry was posted in Faith, Hope, Prayer, Wholeness. Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Serenity Prayer

  1. mrthekidd says:

    The original is so inspiring, it gives total control to God in humble submission and obedience ; it becomes so much more than a quick soundbite that can be changed and mis-used. And I agree, it should be called the grace prayer, because it is through the grace of God that we obtain all things.

    Thanks for sharing this.

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