A Mother Superior's Prayer

Lord, Thou knowest better than I know myself that I am growing older, and will some day be old.
Keep me from getting talkative, and particularly from the fatal habit of thinking I must say something on every subject and every occasion.
Release me from craving to try to straighten out everybody's affairs.
Keep my mind free from the recital of endless details - give me wings to get to the point.
I ask for grace enough to listen to the tales of others' pain. Help me endure them with patience; but seal my lips on my own aches and pains - they are increasing, and my love of rehearsing them becomes sweeter as the years go by.
Teach me the glorious lesson that occasionally it is possible that 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 old woman is one of the crowning works of the devil.
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.