Stories & Blog

Praying the Serenity Prayer

Connie Neckers | June 7, 2021

Last year we started noticing that our dog Mattie was having a little trouble with her right hind leg. She would stumble now and then and gently sway side to side if she was standing still. We mentioned it to the vet at her yearly checkup; he examined her hips and spine thoroughly and because nothing appeared to be amiss and she was in no pain, he advised us to keep an eye on her and bring her back if we continued to notice symptoms.

A few months later the symptoms were more pronounced and after some testing she was diagnosed with a disease called degenerative myelopathy which is the canine equivalent of Lou Gehrig's disease. She is losing the feeling in her back legs and the eventual results will be overall paralysis. This was very difficult news to hear, and as I see the disease steadily progressing I have had numerous moments when my inner peace has gone to the wayside.

I was listening to the radio one morning and the host, Jim Smith from 93.7, The Light, was talking about the Serenity Prayer. It is so widely known I think we could all recite the beginning of the prayer:

"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."

However, we don't often hear the ending of the prayer.

"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. Amen"

Jim included in his program that morning, a short performance by "The Skit Guys" entitled "The Serenity Prayer." One actor played God and the other played a man who was trying his best to be confident and in control. In a funny and poignant manner, God broke through the man's defenses and drilled down to his deepest pain and fear, and assured him that He would be there with him, and that He could handle it.

It was a wonderful reminder for me to relinquish this situation into God's hands and enjoy the time we have left with our sweet and faithful little dog. Watch it on YouTube here. After a few seconds of play, you will be able to skip the advertisement and the performance will begin.

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