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How do I cope with COVID-19?

I am 91 years old.

I don’t think I could live without the message contained in the following prayer originally written by a New York preacher - Paul Reinhold Niebuhr in 1932-33. I hope it strikes a note with younger generations. I notice that lots of people can recite the first two lines, but ripe old age requires the rest of it:

“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. Living one day at a time. Enjoying one moment at a time, accepting hardship as the pathway to peace. Taking, as Jesus did, this sinful world as it is, not as I would have it to be. Trusting that He will make all things right - if I surrender to His will. That I may be reasonably happy in this life, and supremely happy with Him forever in the next.”

When friends ask me: “How are you doing?” I can reply: “I’m doing very well – but I must redefine what “well” means. I can be well as I learn to accept hardship and totally adjust to it - only then will peace come. If you can’t accept and adjust, old age can make all things seem wrong.

Only God can make all things right, so I must continuously surrender to His will to make life possible and bearable.

So how do I cope with Covid-19? The same way as I cope with all of life.

Dr Charles William Slack

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