March 23, 2014

Serenity Prayer - full version by Terrie Lynne

Ever since I read the suggested theme topic, Taboo or Controversial Topics, for the month of March my mind has gone several different directions, but this morning I felt at peace that this is the article I want to post.

The Serenity Prayer is probably one of the most widely known prayers ever written. I have seen the short modified version on fridge magnets, mugs, and posters and it is commonly used in Alcoholic's Anonymous and 12 step programs. But, I wander how many people know the full version. I know I didn't until just a few weeks ago as I stumbled upon it quite by accident or perhaps a God incident maybe more accurate!

My hope is that, with all of the controversial topics that have been posted and the feelings and emotions that may come to the surface, this little prayer will bring some peace and serenity!


 By Reinhold Niebuhr - full version

God give me 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.
I have to admit I enjoy the second part of this prayer as much as the first and hope to delve a little deeper into it, perhaps as a devotional topic at a later date. I think we can find peace and serenity if we do try to live each day at a time and enjoy one moment at a time, whether it is during good times or in bad, happy times or sad. I do believe the scriptures encourage us to cast our cares on God for He cares for us. For me that is something I need to constantly remind myself to do!

Reinhold Niebuhr himself quoted yet another slightly different version of the first part of the prayer and it goes like this: 

O God and Heavenly Father,
Grant to us the serenity of mind to accept that which cannot be changed;
courage to change that which can be changed,
and wisdom to know the one from the other,
through Jesus Christ our Lord, Amen.

Here is the version we are most familiar with:

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

I hope you have been encouraged and blessed!

References: If you would like to learn more about the author, Reinhold Niebuhr, or the Serenity Prayer, you will find some good information on Wikipedia.


  1. Thank you, Terilyn, for sharing this prayer in its entirety. I didn't know the name of the author, and I certainly didn't know there was more to this well-known prayer, which has undoubtedly helped many.

    I agree that the second part is equal to, if not more apt than the first.

  2. Yes, thanks for sharing the complete prayer. It is beautiful just thinking about having that total trust in Jesus.

  3. I immediately had to share part 2 with someone I know who is struggling. Now I'll re-read it a few times and take it in myself. Thx for sharing, Terilyn.

  4. A beautiful prayer. Thanks for sharing.

    Thank you. Love love, Andrew. Bye.

  5. Perfect timing for the perfect prayer. In all things we can have peace if we allow Jesus into the centre.

  6. Ruth Sakstad2:33 pm GMT-7

    Thanks for sharing this prayer in total. I really appreciated it.

  7. Thanks! I had not heard the second part before.

  8. 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,

    Love this, thank you Terilyn!

    Pam Mytroen


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