I happened upon this prayer by Father James Martin. It’s an alternative version of The Serenity Prayer and is for all of us who are amazingly adept at ignoring the log in our own eye yet are over-anxious about the speck in our brother’s and sister’s eye.

A New Serenity Prayer by Father James Martin

God, grant me the serenity
to accept the people I cannot change,
which is pretty much everyone,
since I’m clearly not you, God.
At least not the last time I checked.

And while you’re at it, God,
please give me the courage
to change what I need to change about myself,
which is frankly a lot, since, once again,
I’m not you, which means I’m not perfect.
It’s better for me to focus on changing myself
than to worry about changing other people,
who, as you’ll no doubt remember me saying,
I can’t change anyway.

Finally, give me the wisdom to just shut up
whenever I think that I’m clearly smarter
than everyone else in the room,
that no one knows what they’re talking about except me,
or that I alone have all the answers.

Basically, God,
grant me the wisdom
to remember that I’m
not you.

Amen.

James Martin wearing glasses

 Fr. James Martin, SJ, is a Jesuit priest, editor at large of America, consultor to the Vatican’s Dicastery for Communication and the author of many books, including the New York Times bestsellers “The Jesuit Guide to (Almost) Everything,” “Jesus: A Pilgrimage” and “Learning to Pray.

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