The Serenity Prayer is one of the best-known prayers in Christianity and possibly among non-Christians as well. This beautiful prayer, however, is so often quoted that its wisdom can be lost. To obtain the desired wisdom we must first seek the source of true wisdom.
The children of GOD are promised in Proverbs 9:10 (ESV) that “The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is insight.” Other translations use the word understanding instead of insight (KJV, NASB, NIV). I really like how the New Living Translation states that “Fear of the LORD is the foundation of wisdom. Knowledge of the Holy One results in good judgment.”
When the Bible refers to the “fear of the LORD,” it means having a deep respect, reverence and awe for GOD’s power and authority. Rather than causing someone to be afraid of GOD, a proper “fear of the Lord” leads one to love Him. Wisdom proceeds from a healthy fear of the LORD, and the value of that wisdom is clearly presented in Proverbs 8 & 14. Those same passages also show us the result of a lack of healthy fear. In Proverbs 8, the personification of wisdom tells us:
Pride and arrogance and the way of evil and perverted speech I hate.
I have counsel and sound wisdom; I have insight; I have strength.
My prayer is that we as children of GOD will be strengthened in these darkening times through the wisdom born of our fear of the LORD. As we seek GOD’s kingdom and righteousness (Matthew 6:33) we are seeking His royal strength through which we can be changed as we are transformed to His acceptable image (see Romans 12:1-2). Take courage, the wrath of GOD is not intended for His children; but we must continue to seek and follow Him!
Shalom, Pastor Bill