Sunday, May 3, 2009


My friend Marilyn at was over tonight and we were trying to work on her blog, but my computer mouse is acting up, so I wasn't very successful at helping her, but in reviewing her blog, I found she had written the Serenity Prayer. I told her the story of my Mom's wish for that prayer to be used at her funeral.....very firmly requesting the entire version, not the short one. Marilyn had never heard of the long one, and I really hadn't either until Mom requested it. The first part is what is so well known to most everyone, but the second part holds the real deal. My father was an alcoholic. Mom loved him anyway. He was, as she said, "Like the girl with the strawberry curl right in the middle of her forehead. When he was good, he was good, but when he was bad, he was horrid".

You know me....always with the pictures. The first one shows all 11 of us together on one couch....We were close.... The second one shows us all at church for Mom and Dad's 25th anniversary-What an accomplishment in 25 years! Mom began real early, having her first child at 15 and her last on the exact same date 15 years later....that means at times it was quite easy to calculate. Mom was 30 with a 15 year old and a newborn with 7 more kids in between!!! Whew!

Anyway, through all of their trials with alcoholism, AA and Alanon, the 12 Steps, and trying to raise 9 kids on.....basically NO income, scraping to survive, and living as she often quoted, "one day at a time", she continued to love Dad and all of her children, and her Lord. She lived this prayer every day of her life and wanted to keep on living it in her last days....accepting hardships and surrendering to His will, trying to be reasonable happy in this life and praying to be supremely happy with Him forever in the next.

I give you "The Serenity Prayer".....the whole thing!

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.
--Reinhold Niebuhr


Sunshine Mama said...

I've never heard that before either. Nice.

janelle said...

Carol, I don't know why anyone would read that without including all of it. For me it's like reading Jeremiah 29:11 withouth reading through verse 13.

Two years ago on this Sunday (not actually on May 3 - but this Sunday) we started preparing for my mother-in-law to pass on from this world into glory-she passed away 2 days later; we were fortunate to be with her those last few days.

This has been heavy on my heart today; your post today has touched me deeply. Thank you so much.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for sharing the entire version of the serenity prayer! I am glad we had a good visit last night and thanks for working on my blog to give it an update! You ROCK!
Your sista in the hood...
Marilyn ;)

Annie said...

Thank you for sharing this. I never realized there was more to it. Beautiful, beautiful way to live.

Jennifer said...

I love this:

"... that I may be reasonably happy in this life and supremely happy with Him forever in the next."

Great post, Carol!

Kelly @ The Beauty of Sufficient Grace said...

Beautiful Carol...I'm thinking of you as Mother's Day approaches as well. What a beautiful post to honor your sweet mom, and what a testimony of her precious faith. I like the long version of that prayer. Thanks so much for sharing it. My family has a long history of alcoholic fathers as well. I love the family pictures.
Blessings to you, sweet friend...