Words are Gifts


I am missing the serenity of the beach.

I met this word in the late 1990s when a colleague shared the serenity prayer with me. I have always thought of that prayer, especially as I have lost touch with him.

The prayer he gave me was published on a tiny card. I kept this card for many years with all my other cards and travelled with it everywhere I went. This card stood out as it was the only one with words. These words were truly special.

“God grant me the serenity

To accept the things

I cannot change


To change the things I can and

Wisdom to know the difference.”

A powerful prayer. I have since enjoyed using the word serenity and mentioned the prayer to my friends. I’m glad I can use the word to describe other calm settings where one feels soothed after the experience.

I wonder if that is what the prayer was meant to do.


8 responses to “Serenity”

  1. My grandmother first shared that poem with me when I was about 12 or 13. As someone who lived with alcoholism, it was her prayer tucked into her coin purse, cookbook, bookcase, notepad, and tucked into her pocket most days.
    When I asked her why, she said she knew every word but the physical presence of the poem brought her serenity.
    Thanks for the memories

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thank you for sharing these familiar words. Simply reading them again allows me to take a deep breath and relax my shoulders. A moment of serenity.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. My father has lived by this prayer for most of his life. I think of it often and use its wise words with my own children. Serenity was one of our vocabulary words this year. I associate this feeling with the beach, too, and I need that feeling so much right now. Thank you for sharing this word and the prayer with us today. It was definitely a great way to start my day.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Love the idea that you ‘met’ this word. I wonder about our mental model around ‘meeting’ something – as in a goal. I’m thinking about how you can ‘meet’ serenity but not necessarily achieve it.

    Thanks for the inspiration. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Serenity. Courage. Wisdom. All things that bring me a sense of quiet, of calm, of grounding. Thank you. And…as for the beach, YES. I long for sun on skin and toes in sand. Some day, hopefully some day soon…

    Liked by 1 person

  6. I can’t say that is a word I use often if at all, Juliette. However, if the definition is “the state of being calm, peaceful, and untroubled,” then that is how I feel at the end of our Teach Write “Time to Write” sessions. Don’t you?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I agree. I always look forward to our Teach Write meetings as I know I will feel calm and peaceful or serene.


  7. I love this prayer. My mom used to have it framed and hanging on the wall. I remember reading all the time, but lost my connection with it as I got older. I can’t say serenity is a word I use either, but I’m glad to know I have things in my life that meet the definition.

    Liked by 1 person

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About Me

I am am Elementary school teacher at an International IB School in Accra, Ghana, West Africa. I write with groups of writers, such as Teach Write.


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