America blogger Valerie Schultz is a volunteer in a prison, where she often prays the “Serenity Prayer” with inmates in 12-step groups: 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. The key for her is the last six words of that prayer:
I got it. I’d believed I could change a negative situation, and had tried to act courageously, which succeeded only in fracturing the family, and alienating me from some other family members. But I have lacked that precious wisdom: running with courage full-force into a reality that actually requires acceptance has been a bad idea. I have not known the difference. Which explains why serenity has eluded me.