Someone asked me recently what the "Serenity Prayer" meant to me. After thinking about it, I realized this simple prayer has become a very important part of my spiritual life. It assists me in dealing with experiences that sometimes bombard me. It helps sort out what is "small stuff," gives strength not to sweat that small stuff, then reminds me that everything is small stuff. I would like to share how this prayer enhances awareness of my relationship to Creator, to others in my life, and to myself. God grant me the serenity ...There is awareness that my inner peace and sanity come from Creator. This fills me with the strength of the 2nd Step -- Came to believe that a Power greater than myself could [and I always add "would"] restore me to sanity. And there is awareness that I have to ask for what I want, even from Creator.
.. to accept the things I cannot change ... There is an awareness that I cannot change other people, places, or things. I cannot change life or death. I cannot change that I have been chosen to walk this recovery path. I cannot change that Creator loves me unconditionally. I cannot change that I only die once, even though I feel like I die of shame, guilt, or incompetence every day. I cannot change that I am an addict, alcoholic, family member. ... the courage ... There is an awareness that fear is the only real poison in me, and faith and courage are the antidote; an awareness that courage is mine for the asking; an awareness that my job is simply to open my palms and offer up my 'Self' (including self-will ) to
Creator, asking for knowledge of Creator's will and the power to carry it out. And there is awareness that I have to do the legwork. I have to walk toward what I fear, i nstead of away from it. ... to change the things I can ... There is an awareness that there is only one thing on my list of what I can change -- me. At any moment in time, I have the power to change my thoughts and how I see any situation. There is an awareness that at any moment in time, I can choose to accept others (as well as myself) from a position of love by saying softly to myself, "I love and accept ___ just the way ____ is today." At any moment of time, I can declare a "time out" to center myself. At any moment of time, I can change my i solation by contacting others. At any moment of time, I can change my fear of losing something dear by freely letting it go. And I can change my slip from recovery by beginning my new 24 hours at any hour of the day or night. ... and the wisdom to know the difference. (I always add a request for "willingness" to the above.) There is awareness that wisdom is my ability to objectively see what is my job and what is Creator's; an awareness that I need to find the willingness to give control to Creator and Creator's instruments. The delightful thing about the "Serenity Prayer" is that anyone can make up his own interpretation of it. A friend of mine has the following motto above her desk: "Failure to plan on your part does not constitute an emergency on my part." Copyright 2006 Judy Shepps Battle