Last Sunday, Pastor Eric shared some of his story and gave an invitation for each of us to embrace our personal recovery journey. It’s my hope that each of us understands we are each in recovery and that we as a church will be ready and able to support each other as we walk these journeys.
As a church, we know putting an emphasis on our recovery ministries means there will be many of us feeling the conviction to start dealing with some of our untended wounds. It’s my hope we can have a concerted focus of prayer for one another while these efforts are taking place. Would you be willing to take some time this month to pray for not just yourself but for others as well?
One of the prayers you often see within the recovery community is a prayer written by Reinhold Niebuhr called the “Serenity Prayer”:
God, give me 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.
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.
When I first read Neibuhr’s prayer, I initially had trouble praying to be reasonably happy in this life, but then I came to understand this phrase is helping to set a realistic expectation for me. Jesus is the one who told us that because of sin, we will have trouble in this world. We do not need to set the bar in this life at perfection; that’s unattainable. Instead, may we understand that true happiness in this life comes from having a personal relationship with Jesus, being free from the hurts that have taken place in our lives, and having honest and trusting relationships with others.
While we as a church increase our emphasis of our need for recovery, would you be willing to pray for this freedom and happiness, not just for yourself but for others in our church and surrounding community as well?