I found this handwritten prayer, in my (paternal) grandmother’s handwriting, in a box of old family photos (that obviously are not orphaned). She wrote it on four sheets of her husband’s business invoices. John F. Weathers was a carpenter and my father’s stepfather. They were living in Midland, Texas at the time and it was in the early 1950s. No matter your religious affiliation (or lack thereof), or to whom you send your verbal (or silent) prayers out to, I thought it had enough merit to share with my viewers.
An Anonymous Prayer (Written in the 17th century)
Lord, thy knowest better than I know myself
that I am growing older and will someday be old.
Keep me from the fatal habit of thinking I must say something
on every subject and, on every occasion.
Release me from craving to straighten out everybody’s affairs.
Make me thoughtful but not moody, helpful but not bossy,
With my vast store of wisdom it seems a pity not to use it all.
But, Thou knowest Lord that I want a few friends at the end.
Keep my mind from the recitals of endless details.
Give me wings to get to the point.
Seal my lips on my aches and pains.
They are increasing and love of rehearsing them
is becoming sweeter as the time goes by.
I do not ask for Grace enough to enjoy the tales
of other’s pain but, help me endure them with patience.
I dare not ask for improved memory, but for a
growing humility and a lessening cocksureness
when my memory seems to clash with the memories of others.
Teach me the glorious lesson that occasionally I may be mistaken.
Keep me reasonably sweet I do not want to be a Saint.
Some of them are so hard to live with.
But a sour person is the works of the Devil.
Give me the ability to see good things in
unexpected places and talents in unexpected people.
And, give me, O Lord, the Grace to tell them so!