God give me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can; and the wisdom to know the difference. I have said this prayer many times in my life. The entire prayer reads as follows: 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. Amen .
It is the middle of the night, I am a nurse by profession but this particular night, I am a patient. I had reacted to a medicine, I had lost fourteen pounds in one week. I had diarrhea and I knew I needed IV fluids. I had driven myself to the hospital so I was there alone. But was I. No, the nurse checked on me and I knew the Lord was there with me.
The year 2009, my husband and I had decided to walk away from our home of thirty four years. We were upside down in the mortgage. We were bitterly disappointed because we had declared bankruptcy two years earlier but had wanted to keep the house. We told the judge and we trusted the lawyer to file all the necessary paper work. We paid another lawyer to straighten this situation out only to find out we were paying rent not a mortgage because the lawyer did not file the paperwork to reaffirm the debt as he had to agree that we could pay this debt. With no way to turn this around, we decided to move.
God opened a home that was owned by my son and his in’laws. The house was rented and we had been looking at houses and apartments. The current renters in September gave their notice. This was truly a blessing. The home was on a twenty acre flower farm, with beautiful flowers, my own mountain to climb, palm trees and in the yard were bird of paradise, roses, green grass, a regular oasis. I loved the house as my son had lived there before he bought his current home.
Because we walked away from the house, I had began to think that God may be leading me out of my management career. I did not need to make the salary. As a manager, I was at the top of my game but the stress was great.
As I lay on the gurney and I watched the IV drop healing fluids into my body, drop by drop, I knew that God was going to heal me and he was going to give me a new job, I wanted to return to the hospital as a nurse but I had not been in the hospital for twenty years. I had a feeling of peace come over me. I did not know how but I knew that I knew I would be changing jobs. I was not out of the woods, I had nine trips to get IV fluids after that night in October. I was in God’s waiting room of illness as my syptoms did not improve for quite some time.
For the next two months, I prayed the serenity prayer many times. Things were strained at my job. It was one of the most difficult times as I waited for the Lord to open up another job and heal my body. Fear was my constant companion. There is a book Prayers To Move Your Mountains had been given to me by a precious friend. My precious friend, Ann would pray with me before I would go to work, panic and anxiety was my constant companion, despite praying for serenity. The prayer we prayed was Control for Panic. Part of the prayer is below:
“Lord God, when everything in my life goes according to plan, walking by faith and waiting upon you isn’t so difficult. But right now, the temptation to move ahead of You is great. The suddenness of this storm propels me to react out of desperation rather than faith. O know responding in panic and moving ahead of You only leads me out of Your Blessings and into poverty (Proverbs 21:5) and sin (Proverbs 19:2). But everything within me screams to do something Now. But by Your mercy and grace, show me that by jumping ship I am only diving into the turbulent and uncertain waters below. You have not given me a spirit of fear, but of power, love, and a sound mind. (2 Timothy 1:7)”
The phone call came, I had an interview. The offer came and in January of 2010, I had a new job. That defining moment in the emergency room in October when I felt the peace of God that he was going to give me a new job came to pass. Even though He opened the doors, the time I waited was filled with panic and wonder. I had to Let Go and Let God. This time of my life has been one of my times when I can look back and know that Jeremiah 29:11 came true.
Today I have serenity as I daily read his word, study God’s word. As I write my prayers it is my life line to God. Pray helps me to not jump into the murky waters. Pray leads me and gives me my marching orders each day as I put one foot in front of the other in obedience to God. His grace is sufficient to meet all my needs. 2 Corinthians 12:9 Blessings.