God, give us grace to accept with serenity the things that cannot be changed, courage to change the things which should be changed, and the wisdom to distinguish the one from the other. This prayer was first printed in a monthly bulletin of the Federal Council of Churches and has become enormously popular. It has been circulated in millions of copies.
The serene philosophy of the pink rose is steadying. Its fragrant, delicate petals open fully and are ready to fall, without regret or disillusion, after only a day in the sun. It is so every summer. One can almost hear their pink, fragrant murmur as they settle down upon the grass: 'Summer, summer, it will always be summer.'
He who believes in God is not careful for the morrow, but labors joyfully and with a great heart. "For He giveth His beloved, as in sleep." They must work and watch, yet never be careful or anxious, but commit all to Him, and live in serene tranquility; with a quiet heart, as one who sleeps safely and quietly.
In every pain let this thought be present, that there is no dishonor in it, nor does it make the governing intelligence worse. Indeed, in the case of most pains, let this remark of Epicurus aid thee, that pain is neither intolerable nor everlasting - if thou bearest in mind that it has its limits, and if thou addest nothing to it in imagination. Pain is either an evil to the body (then let the body say what it thinks of it!)-or to the soul. But it is in the power of the soul to maintain its own serenity and tranquility, and not to think that pain is an evil. . . . It will suffice thee to remember as concerning pain . . . that the mind may, by stopping all manner of commerce and sympathy with the body, still retain its own tranquility.
Is your cucumber bitter? Throw it away. Are there briars in your path? Turn aside. That is enough. Do not go on and say, "Why were things of this sort ever brought into this world?" neither intolerable nor everlasting - if thou bearest in mind that it has its limits, and if thou addest nothing to it in imagination. Pain is either an evil to the body (then let the body say what it thinks of it!)-or to the soul. But it is in the power of the soul to maintain its own serenity and tranquility. . . .