Did you know there was more?

Dec 6, 2005Find joy today

I’ve been working through issues (or “ish” as my friend Jen calls them) in my life lately. (Actually, being the overly introspective sort, I’m constantly refining and redefining my ish–it’s a weird mental hobby of mine!)

I chatted with my personal coach about my plethora of ish. She asked me if I’d read the serenity prayer lately.

“Oh yeah, sure. That one about accepting what you can’t change and the wisdom to know the difference?”

“Yes, but there’s more,” she said.

So, for those of you who have ish, I offer the REST of the serenity prayer for you. It’s good stuff.

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.

–Reinhold Niebuhr

Wow. The living one day at a time, one moment at a time is a challenge for me, a gal with ish. My poor crazy head is spinning, spinning, spinning with ideas and scraps and thoughts, that it’s hard for me to be in the moment, truly alive and aware.

Accepting hardships as a pathway to peace? That’s hard. I would rather ram my head against hardships, not embrace them, but then I remember that pesky J.B. Philips translation of James about counting it all joy. “Don’t resent them (trials) as intruders, but welcome them as friends!” James is one interesting guy! I bet he had ish.

Taking the world as it is and not as I would like it? Another counterintuitive one. Accepting reality is hard to take sometimes, but I see Niebuhr’s wisdom.

Finding my ultimate joy in Jesus is something I should pray more often, particularly when I’m flooded with ish upon ish. It’s all about Him, His glory, His filling, His attention to my ish, His strength through my ish…

So, there’s a bit of armchair psychology for you. Read/pray this prayer this week. And ask God to still your heart so you can be in the moment, embrace trials, accept life and find joy in Jesus.