‘Lord, you know better than I that I am growing old, 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 on every occasion. With my vast store of wisdom it seems a pity not to use it all.
‘Make me thoughtful but not moody, helpful but not bossy. Teach me the glorious lesson that occasionally it is possible I may be mistaken. Keep me reasonably sweet. I don't wish 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. 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' pains. Help me to endure them with patience. But seal my lips on my aches and pains - they are interesting and my love of rehearsing them becomes sweeter as the years go by. But you know, Lord, that I want a few friends at the end.'