December 23, 2017

Advent 2017

"Let God Lead"

Several years ago a friend shared a prayer that has become very meaningful to me. It is the Serenity Prayer: God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference. This prayer has become my mantra in a life stage of change.

For the past eighteen years I have taught eighth grade physical science at Oglethorpe Charter School. Moving from a private school to a public middle school was a leap of faith. While I have never regretted the transition, each year has become more difficult as the paradigm shifted with changing expectations and demographics of students. I love teaching but wonder if my age is catching up with me! I need to keep working for a few more years, but in what area of education? God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change.

This past spring major changes entered my life as our family closed an era of pastoral ministry. My identity for over forty years as a pastor's wife ended as John embarked in a new direction of leadership with the Baptist History and Heritage Society. This was not something we saw coming, but we believed as it unfolded that the hand of God was at work in ways we could not understand. Life's journey took a new turn. Courage to change the things I can.

During the month of October I must confess I attended Asbury Memorial United Methodist Church for the "God on Broadway" series they perform each year. I was privileged to teach all four of the Hester children, and there is a special bond with Billy and Cheri from our ministry parallels. Each Sunday I was greeted with warmth. Each Sunday I marveled at the diversity of that congregation and the love that was extended to me - a stranger to most and yet greeted individually by so many. Each Sunday I wore my blue jeans and nobody seemed to mind. Each Sunday I felt the spirit of God speak to me saying, "It's ok. You've got this." And wisdom to know the difference.

God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, courage to change the things I can, and wisdom to know the difference. I am still growing and changing and experiencing the serenity that comes as I surrender control and open myself to God through prayer and meditation. God is more real to me now than ever before. Selah.

-- Norma Finley

Share This Page

Upcoming Events