The Serenity Prayer – A Powerful Line by Line Breakdown

I’ve experienced a few, let’s say, “flashbacks” recently. I am apart of a Woman’s ‘Love Yourself’ group regarding personal self-development. Today’s daily post made me think back to an amazing experience I had at an NA meeting. No, I didn’t go as a narcotic addict; I went as a school assignment, and so thankful that I did.

They talked about the mantra of “Just For Today” as I learned they do at every meeting, and how it is tied to the Serenity Prayer. I left there so inspired and as a better person. Naturally for me, the experience weighed heavily on my mind for several days. I wrote a blog that didn’t site much more than the full Just For Today mantra. I re-read the Serenity Prayer 50 times over. I tried to remain in that inspiration for as long as possible.

It wasn’t until doing some research that I realized what most probably never have. There is a whole lot more to that Serenity Prayer than most can readily recite.

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.

A good majority of the world has probably heard the part above a time or 2, at least. Some may even recite it daily. It is heavily associated with Alcoholics Anonymous and the related groups, and used as part of their 12-step model based on taking one day at a time, “Just For Today”.

Regardless of anyone’s belief, or disbelief, in “God”, it’s a beautiful prayer. And as I mentioned, there is more; there are several important lines more, and without them you really do not get the full powerful message it was written to portray, by Reinhold Niebuhr.

The text of the entire prayer is as follows:

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.

Living one day at a time;

Enjoying one moment at a time;

Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace;

Taking, as He did, this sinful world as it is, not as I would have it;

Trusting that He will make all things right if I surrender to His Will;

That I may be reasonably happy in this life

and supremely happy with Him Forever in the next.

Amen.

Reading the whole piece together, fully taking in each line one at a time, makes for a much more impactful message.