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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.
Reinhold Niebuhr, who lived from 1892–1971, first wrote the Serenity Prayer in the 1930’s. Differing sources claim that the Serenity Prayer was written in 1933, 1934 or 1937. Niebuhr's prayer was published in 1951 and gained popularity when it was adopted by twelve-step programs like Alcoholics Anonymous.
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.
The Serenity Prayer is not mentioned in the Bible, however, several underlying principles are found in Philippians 4:6-7.
“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”