Unselfishness or unselfed love?


Jill Gooding


I knelt in prayer—my heart reached out

to know what Love was all about.


Unselfish—I once thought that’s for me,

this is the quality that I should be;

I’ll help to care for those in need

and hungry souls I’ll gladly feed.

I proudly set myself the task

of serving all who would just ask;

So Martha-like was I in giving

that often burdened was my living.


I knew unselfishness was right,

but still I needed further light.

I prayed anew, more humbly now,

to lift off self and thus allow

pure Love divine to be my being—

my thoughts, my words, my very seeing.


Then gently came a higher view:

Unselfish thinks of “me” and “you”—

involving self it gets worn out;

self-tinged, it causes seeds of doubt.

But unselfed love’s another thing

and only blessings it can bring:

God’s selfhood wholly fills the scene

where mortal man before had been,

not problems, persons, things, and places.

But God alone loves and embraces.

Unselfish is a steppingstone

to unselfed love and God alone.


I rose from prayer, Love’s self revealed,

and joyously, I stepped forth healed.