Reflecting on the Serenity Prayer to Make Change

As I read today’s #BlogElul prompt, I immediately found myself thinking about the Serenity Prayer:

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can,
and wisdom to know the difference. ~ Reinhold Niebuhr

While its universal nature has led, at times, to oversaturation and overuse, I think that the serenity prayer conveys a significant message for Elul.  (As a reminder, the Hebrew month of Elul, for Jews, is a time of introspection and reflection that leads up to Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, which is also the start of the High Holy Days. #BlogElul is an effort to reflect through writing.)

I work hard on recognizing those things which are truly out of my control.  It’s not easy.  Those can often be the things that frustrate me the most.  Learning to let them go and focus fully on the things that I can impact, on ways that I can make a difference, is an ongoing process for me.

Are there direct applications to the world of disability awareness, acceptance and inclusive practice?  Of course. 

Here’s one:
While we may not be able to change the way some people will speak about (or to) an individual with disabilities, we can change our response. Despite the fact that we may feel frustrated, sad or downright angry, channeling that emotion and crafting a well-thought out response may help to educate the person who has been offensive. Here is a great list of responses from the Friendship Circle Blog.

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