#1 NYT bestselling author Linda Lael Miller

Quotes of the Day

I think a lot of us face challenges to our emotional well-being around this time of year, when the holy hustle-and-bustle of Christmas is over and the lengthy winter sets in in earnest, so I decided to share this quote, which is one of my all-time favorites:

“In the depths of winter I finally learned that there was in me an invincible summer.”  Albert Camus  (Look inside your heart and you’ll find it.)

And then there is the prayer that has seen so many through so much for so long:

“God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.”  I first heard this prayer when I joined a self-help group many moons ago, and I can honestly say that repeating it over and over, outloud or to myself, brought me through some very dark valleys.  My mother embroidered the prayer on a sampler, in fact, and it graces my bedroom wall to this day, reminding me that there is Someone I can turn to when my batteries are running low.

In my opinion, a lot of our problems are caused by wanting things to be different than they are, thinking we should have had (and admit it, there’s a touch of entitlement in this attitude) a better childhood, a better marriage, a better this, that or the other thing.  We shouldn’t have had this problem or that one (conveniently overlooking the truth: that we ourselves caused the problem, in most instances).  It’s all too easy to clench our fists, dig in our heels, and demand not only that our present be changed, but our past, too.  (Despite the obvious insanity of this, we continue to do it.)  Fill in the blank.  Yes, sir, we want it all made up to us, darn it, yesterday if not sooner.  My friends, whole lifetimes have been missed out on this way.  The joy we could have had is blotted out.

Been there, done that.  Don’t care to do it again.

I’m SO ready to move on, to look for reasons to be grateful instead of reasons to complain, whinge (a British word I particularly love) and whine.

That concludes today’s sermon.  :)

With New Year’s Day approaching fast, I’m announcing a new contest–for the next four weeks, one person will win a copy of Danielle LaPorte’s fantastic book, THE DESIRE MAP EXPERIENCE each week, along with a signed copy of my new book, BIG SKY SECRETS, the final story in the Big Sky series.  Another winner will receive an autographed copy of BIG SKY SECRETS as well, along with a small surprise.

How to win?  Get those comments in.

Later today, the trusty Jenni will be contacting the final two winners of either a Barnes and Noble or an Amazon gift card, valued at $50, along with the usual autographed books.  Tomorrow, the names will be announced on this blog, so tune in again.  :)

Now, in closing, repeat after me:

God, grant me the SERENITY to accept the things I cannot change, the COURAGE to change the things I can, and the WISDOM to know the difference.

65 comments to “Quotes of the Day”

  1. Robin Hamlin
      · December 26th, 2013 at 1:48 pm · Link

    “Let be” is also a nice saying.

  2. Janet Finlayson
      · December 26th, 2013 at 1:49 pm · Link

    What a great way to remind us that the “New Year” is coming and all of us have the power to change our attitude and make a difference in our own lives. I for one and looking forward to changing and dropping this negative outlook I seem to have picked up the last several years. Yes, things aren’t perfect in my life, but I still woke up this morning, was able to feed and dress myself and drive myself to work. I need to remember to be grateful for those things as there are many many people who can’t and would be more than happy to trade places with me. Hoping everyone had a wonderful Christmas and will have a Happy New Year.

  3. Gwen
      · December 26th, 2013 at 1:50 pm · Link

    Our sermon on Christmas Eve was based around the movie Scrooge and how all of us have a little Scrooge in us and what’s important is changing like he did in the end.

  4. Jessica Laas
      · December 26th, 2013 at 2:00 pm · Link

    Looking forward to a new year and a new beginning. Thanks for reminding me of the Serenity Prayer. What beautiful words to start my work day with. :)

  5. Juanita Rice
      · December 26th, 2013 at 2:18 pm · Link

    I imagine I’m one of the few who look forward to long winter months with less hustle and bustle. Although that’s not to say I’m not happy to see spring arrive! :)

  6. Renae Kinsey
      · December 26th, 2013 at 2:19 pm · Link

    Sorry to hear about your turkey and the mess in the oven!! I’m going to look into this desire map! Love you!!

  7. Leanna
      · December 26th, 2013 at 2:19 pm · Link

    Been there, done that is the best quote. I hope your Christmas was exactly as you wanted.

  8. Becky Johnson Strobaugh
      · December 26th, 2013 at 2:32 pm · Link

    Linda, you are spot on.

    In its entirety (which I discovered a few years ago in a local obituary):

    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.


    • Hilda
        · December 26th, 2013 at 5:19 pm · Link

      Becky J.S., thank you for providing the entire prayer. I knew there was more to it but didn’t take the time to look it up.
      Thank you!

    • Vicky
        · December 26th, 2013 at 7:50 pm · Link

      Becky, Thank you for sharing the complete prayer. I had not seen it before.

    • linda
        · December 30th, 2013 at 7:30 pm · Link

      Thank you for sharing this!

  9. Lois Rotella
      · December 26th, 2013 at 2:44 pm · Link

    Linda, I repeat that saying of serenity all the time. I believe in it. The up coming year will bring new changes in my life and I am looking forward to them. They were not of my choosing but I have accepted them and look forward to what will happen.

  10. Sandra Barfield
      · December 26th, 2013 at 2:47 pm · Link

    Thanks for these thoughts. I have been trying to remember the quote “be here now” in my everyday life to stay engaged, and not thinking way ahead of “oh my gosh what did I forget, or what do I need to do! Instead, I am trying to focus and enjoy the present moments, being present in my activities.

    I love reading your books and posts and newsletters!!

    Happy Holidays!!
    Sandy B

  11. ,
      · December 26th, 2013 at 3:18 pm · Link

    I say the serenity prayer everyday, it helps me thru my day, I belong to a few groups myself to help with depression and over-eating and this prayer was on the wall and its been on my wall ever since! I love your little words of wisdom and they put a smile on my face! Love your books! Happy New Year!

  12. rosemary
      · December 26th, 2013 at 3:28 pm · Link

    Thank you for sharing your experiences and wisdom.

  13. Teresa
      · December 26th, 2013 at 3:44 pm · Link

    Serenity Prayer, my mother would mention that alot. Specially when I was being more of a pain-n-tale than usual. Patience was/is areal sticking point with me, then temper. I would/will cuss myself quicker than others. Mom thought it would help. In some things maybe, but… I’ve always been a pain-ntale & always will be. :wink: Have very Happy New Year!

  14. Betty Hamilton
      · December 26th, 2013 at 4:07 pm · Link

    I hope you had a very Merry Christmas.
    Wishing you the happiest of New Years!!

    God, grant me the SERENITY to accept the things I cannot change, the COURAGE to change the things I can, and the WISDOM to know the difference.

    This was one of my Dad’s favorite sayings long ago!!

  15. Sharon Jesse
      · December 26th, 2013 at 4:08 pm · Link

    Thank you for the prayer Linda, wishing you many blessings
    fpr the New Year.

  16. Jo-Ann Baker
      · December 26th, 2013 at 4:19 pm · Link

    Thank you, My Mother in law said that pray of Serenity all the time! We said it for her and my Father in law when they passed. I have alway loved it Thank You for reminding me of the good things and times at this time of year. I had a wonderful Christmas Days spent with some of my 8 Grandkids. God love them they are so wonderful!
    May you be blessed and Happy New Year!
    Thank you again for the many get aways I get when I am reading one of your books! Have a wonderful day :)

  17. Carol Miller White
      · December 26th, 2013 at 5:11 pm · Link

    I love that second quote, too :) Getting ready to begin my Gratitude Journal on January first . . .

  18. pat Yates
      · December 26th, 2013 at 5:14 pm · Link

    I love the serenity prayer however my favorite is ” Lord put your arm on my shoulder and your hand over my mouth.” After the Lords Prayer.

    Our day was truly blessed with a lot of family and a lot of friends, food gifts, and smiling children. The Good Lord really blessed us all!

    • linda
        · December 27th, 2013 at 2:56 pm · Link

      I have the ‘hand over my mouth’ prayer on a wall plaque. :)

  19. Virginia Horton
      · December 26th, 2013 at 5:38 pm · Link

    I love this “God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can, and the wisdom to know the difference.” We should all live by this. Thanks for sharing this wonderful post with us. I will I had found your blog earlier because I love your post

  20. Jayne Jageler
      · December 26th, 2013 at 5:38 pm · Link

    But Linda what do you do when your very best isn’t good enough? How do you move away from the hurt? I’m so tired of being the one to chance their out look to smooth over the waters. I want things to be different, but have now way to change the outcome. I pray everyday. I’m listening to the Daily Audio Bible (thanks to your recommendation). I have gone back to church. I’m trying God knows it. When will I be allowed to say how I feel? :cry: :oops: :?:

    • linda
        · December 27th, 2013 at 2:57 pm · Link

      Tell God how you really feel. He’ll lead you from there.

  21. Roberta Giordano
      · December 26th, 2013 at 6:17 pm · Link

    Happy New Year !

  22. Ruby Norwood
      · December 26th, 2013 at 6:36 pm · Link

    I am glad that the Hustle and Bustle as you say is over.I love the closing of today’s blog, beautiful words.

  23. Cecelia Kelsey
      · December 26th, 2013 at 6:43 pm · Link

    That quote has seen me through some rough times in my life. It also helps to deal with a Mother who has never been the Motherly type. I can’t change her any more than I can change my basic beliefs. I do not want to live the life she lives so I don’t. I don’t worry about anything I cannot control either. Makes life a little more enjoyable.

  24. Brenda Cates
      · December 26th, 2013 at 6:51 pm · Link

    Love your post today, it hits home in so many ways for me.

  25. judy
      · December 26th, 2013 at 6:58 pm · Link

    Amen. That was a very good comment and very ture.

  26. Terri Shortell
      · December 26th, 2013 at 7:01 pm · Link

    I have always loved the serenity prayer. Have a necklace with it on. My grandmother gave it to me over 30 years ago.

      · December 26th, 2013 at 7:09 pm · Link

    Loved your blog today, its very thought provoking. I’m thinking seriously about your gratitude journal. Could you mention it again before New Years please? Blessings.

  28. Maryjane Hoffman
      · December 26th, 2013 at 7:24 pm · Link

    I love your way of thinking! My Dad always said the past is just that the past, enjoy today and learn from it and don’t worry about tomorrow as it’s not here yet. I love you new prizes too! Enjoy your day!!

  29. Diane M
      · December 26th, 2013 at 7:36 pm · Link

    Now, in closing, repeat after me:

    God, grant me the SERENITY to accept the things I cannot change, the COURAGE to change the things I can, and the WISDOM to know the difference.

    You know exactly the right prayer for those of us who can use it at this time of year. Thank you Linda for just helping me get through a rough patch. It hasn’t been easy this holiday season. We lost a family member and it has had a depressing affect on many other family members, my mom included. For me having to see her so depressed and not in the Christmas frame of mind was awful. I felt like there was nothing I could do for her. Your reminder of this prayer has helped. Thank you again.

    Now, in closing, repeat after me:

    God, grant me the SERENITY to accept the things I cannot change, the COURAGE to change the things I can, and the WISDOM to know the difference.

  30. Vicky
      · December 26th, 2013 at 7:51 pm · Link

    Linda, I have a framed copy of the Serenity Prayer, as you quoted it and often look to it as a reminder. I appreciate your comments and those of your followers, especially the complete prayer shared by Becky.

  31. Valdi McCoy
      · December 26th, 2013 at 8:13 pm · Link

    Linda, If I could turn back time and change those things in my life that have caused me the most gut-wrenching pain, I would not do it. From the greatest pain comes the sweetest blessings. My beautiful, loving 16 year old daughter was brutalized by an unknown man and from that nightmare God has seen fit to give us a granddaughter that is light and love and joy unbounded. Your prayer, The Serenity Prayer, has also been a large part of my life. However the most meaningful verse for me has been “ALL things work together for good for those who love the Lord”. That grandchild is now 24 years old and never once have I or my daughter ever regretted her birth.
    I enjoy following your blog even though I seldom comment..

  32. Sue Hodge
      · December 26th, 2013 at 8:37 pm · Link

    I am going to start my new year with your thoughs and a prayer each day.
    Thank you Linda

  33. Tinna
      · December 26th, 2013 at 8:46 pm · Link

    The serenity prayer a good reminder too us all. Where do we sign up for your newsletter? This isn’t the first time I’ve seen reference to it. Please & thank you

  34. Marie Jones
      · December 26th, 2013 at 8:50 pm · Link

    Well here goes. Linda, I’ve never been a ‘yes’ person and I’m not about to start now. The part of the sermon as you put it that I whole heartedly dissagree with is that we caused our own problems. Sometimes circumstances CAUSE those problems i.e. my husband DID NOT ask to be bitten by a brown recluse spider, spend 8 days in coma and have an NDE leaving him totally disabled. *I* did not create the fact the insurance dropped us because of that circumstance leaving me to have to care for him 24/7 because if I worked my whole pay would go to a caregiver for him.
    Are there things I can do to make up for that loss of income? Sure. And I DO THEM. I save money anyway I can, do surveys, read e mail for gift cards. I even knit socks to sell. But you know something, truth be told I’m exhausted.
    What sustains me is God. No one comes to my aid. My family is on the east coast and we’re here in Spokane. My husbands mother was here but she passed last year. So who do I turn to? GOD.
    The point of *my* sermon is, you find your strength to get through lifes problems. And you remember, not ALL problems were self created but you deal the best you can.

    • linda
        · December 27th, 2013 at 3:01 pm · Link

      I hope I said in the original message that most, not all, problems are self-caused. Certainly, that isn’t so. There ARE tragedies that come out of nowhere. Bad things definitely happen to good people. Thanks for making an important point.

  35. Barbara S
      · December 26th, 2013 at 9:24 pm · Link

    Thanks for posting this. This season this has been prevalent for me as I have had to “give up control” of several holiday things and “bite my tongue”. Am trying to come to grips with ‘it is probably for the best’……sometimes it is hard….

  36. Pam Brewer
      · December 26th, 2013 at 9:30 pm · Link

    I used to go by the saying “God won’t give me more than I can handle” but today my niece said, “He gives you more than you can handle in order to lean on Him for strength.” Very wise woman.

  37. Emily
      · December 26th, 2013 at 9:35 pm · Link

    I love the serenity prayer. I say it often as I need it in my life. Love the blog…great one!

  38. Sandra Wheeler
      · December 27th, 2013 at 2:34 am · Link

    The Serenity Prayer has boosted me through a few tough times in my life as well. It took many years and at 67, I have finally learned that a lot of the things I wanted changed would have been very detrimental to my family and to myself. God is good and wise, He is never wrong. Have a great day.

  39. Terrie Fulk
      · December 27th, 2013 at 2:46 am · Link

    Linda, since I started paying closer attention to your blog I have started coming out of a tunnel since my husband passed six months ago. Deep down inside of myself I have been letting myself feel cheated and angry. On the outside I appear to be doing well, mostly I do this because of my daughter whom I live with. She isn’t handling the death of her father well at all. But reading your words I have discovered it isn’t good for me to keep these dark feelings trapped inside of me. If I am not whole there is no way I can help my daughter work through her feelings. I want to thank you for the words of encouragement and the realization that there is a light at the end of the tunnel I just need to go forward.

    • linda
        · December 27th, 2013 at 3:02 pm · Link

      God bless you, and my sincerest condolences. You’re walking through a dark valley for sure, as is your daughter–may God be with you.

  40. Barbara Van Tuyl
      · December 27th, 2013 at 8:42 am · Link

    Love these quotes which obviously come from your heart. Wishing you the best the New Year has to offer!

  41. Cricket McCloud
      · December 27th, 2013 at 9:01 am · Link

    My mother also had the Serenity prayer on her bedroom wall when I was a teen in the 60’s. She needed it! I find myself recalling it and my own prayers daily. My hope is the new year brings my family lots of happiness and contentment. It has been such an eventful year with almost losing my daughter and son-in-law in a car accident followed by surgery for her and the sweetest short courtship and wedding for my other daughter who has been a single mom for 15 years. I’m so glad our faith has carried through. Thank you for wonderful books that provide an escape when I need it and entertainment and blessings when I just want a good book to read.

  42. mary klemp
      · December 27th, 2013 at 9:02 am · Link

    I say God grant me the serenity- – to myself all the time and thinking back why do we do so many things that we want to change them. I am getting older and not the wiser but maybe someday I will get my head out of where ever it is and get on track. When I grow up (I am 60) LOL. I love that saying. Thanks for letting me spout off to you. Hope you have a great day and a very Happy New Year. Mary

  43. marilyn
      · December 27th, 2013 at 9:31 am · Link

    here’s one for you…. Lord of Light guide my steps thru the day and let me find peace and happiness in all I see.

  44. Brenda
      · December 27th, 2013 at 9:59 am · Link

    The Serenity Prayer runs through my mind many times every week.

  45. Tonya
      · December 27th, 2013 at 10:04 am · Link

    Love those quotes:) I’m sure I will be repeating them over & over. Thanks for the chance to win!!

  46. Cheryl Lynne Messer
      · December 27th, 2013 at 11:43 am · Link

    Linda, thank you for this blog, by far (and don’t get me wrong, I LOVE you blogs), this has been my favorite blog yet… Inspirational! And, for some reason, I could really use that lately. Becky J.S. thank you for the extended version of the serenity prayer too! Whether it be post holiday blues, early winter seasonal effective disorder or something like you said Linda, the ” would of’s, should of’s”… Just can’t seem to shake thinks and some of those may help. And it is so true, we are always trying to fix things beyond our control and obsessing over things instead of just enjoying the true beauty of life that is just in front of us. Life is so hectic, stressful, demanding and fast, there is never a moment to sit back and enjoy the beauty (and unfortunately, where I live, sadly, there is not much), no matter how much one tries to make of it. As a whole, I think our country is too rushed and family and family values have gone out with yesterday’s trash. There is no time for peace, for love, for enjoying simple beauty. It makes me sad. And I am just as guilty getting caught up in the stress and rush of life that I forget to hug and love my family too, and I forget to smile and enjoy life also. Forget government shutdowns…the government should allow time for families to shutdown everything else in their lives so they can be with their families for awhile, not half a day!

    • linda
        · December 27th, 2013 at 3:04 pm · Link

      Wise words, my friend. Thank you.

  47. Cheryl Lynne Messer
      · December 27th, 2013 at 11:54 am · Link

    Maybe one of your next books sometime might be: inspirational sayings for situations in life…..
    Good times and difficult times.

    This year is going to be very eventful for me with my last semester of school (6 1/2 years almost done!), graduation, NCLEX boards, (got engaged this past November) wedding in September (after being a divorced,single mom for 7 1/2 years), …. Unfortunately, I am not excited, and am rather down. Maybe it’s because I miss my memere (grandmother), I don’t know…. But I, myself could use those, and enjoyed the ones today. Maybe it’s because life is so darned rushed that we never get to stop, sit back and “smell the roses” …. New Years resolution? :roll:

    • linda
        · December 27th, 2013 at 3:05 pm · Link

      You’re probably too TIRED to be excited, bless your heart. Be gentle with yourself.

      • Cheryl Messer
          · January 1st, 2014 at 1:29 am · Link

        Thank you Linda.

  48. Susan Mason
      · December 27th, 2013 at 12:04 pm · Link

    Great post, Linda. So appropriate at this time of year when the ‘let down’ feelings hit.

    Going for a walk in the snow later, and hope that clears the cobwebs.

    Love a chance to win the next Big Sky book! Great series!

    Sue :wink:

  49. Anne Sanchez
      · December 27th, 2013 at 12:38 pm · Link

    We tend to forget how much our attitude about things influence the people about us. As I get older it becomes more and more clear to me,

  50. Teresa Surock
      · December 27th, 2013 at 2:00 pm · Link

    Thank you for reminding us to stay positive. We have blessings we
    will miss if we spend our time worrying about the past. I enjoy your books. Thank you.

  51. Patricia Hann
      · December 27th, 2013 at 9:10 pm · Link

    That prayer has help many of times. There are times and days I keep repeating it. One moment at a time.

  52. midge watkins
      · December 27th, 2013 at 9:30 pm · Link

    linda, This is my first time on your website and what a great
    Christmas and New Year’s present! Thank you for mentioning
    the Serenity prayer. My daughter-in-law and family sent me a
    beautiful throw for Christmas with the prayer on it. I know it
    well, being a recovering alcoholic(29 yrs). I don’t get depressed anymore with God to talk things over with, along with a LLM book for a chaser! Looking forward to this “Desire
    Mapping” thing. Happy New Year :-P

  53. Patrice
      · December 28th, 2013 at 11:16 am · Link

    I appreciate these quotes and thoughts. In fact I bookmarked them to refer back to often. Like many, I have had a terrible and life hanging year. Everything I thought true in my life was not. Life certainly goes on and my attitude, if not all my circumstances, have improved. Often the Serenity Prayer was a comfort and reminder. Often spiritual books and meditation and remembering my love of healing crystals were helpful. It has been interesting your blog sometimes mirrored my “search” for self or you gave me ideas for new authors or crafts to try. Earlier this year I had a chance to meet you in treasure island fl and started reading your parable series. Now the significance of that was that I had not been able to read because of all the drama going on. Reading has always been a solace and refuge and relaxation for me. So, long winded way to say thank you for good stories! You have a good impact on the world. God bless you and yours always. Xo

  54. Carole Sklenar
      · December 29th, 2013 at 7:31 pm · Link

    Love the quotes and plan on keeping this blog as a reference to go to when I’m feeling a little overwhelmed. Thank you.

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