Moortown Baptist Church, 204 King Lane, Leeds LS17 6AA. Map Tel: (0113) 2693750 A member of the YBA. A registered charity No 1128960. Terms of use

Free of all envy, grace-full, unconfined

2 July 2011

Is it only You, God, who is free from envy?
You are perfect, need nothing but Your self,
Anxious for nothing, nor wanting nor wasting,
Is it only you, God, who is free from envy?
 
What is your secret, Lord, why are you so free?
Above all competition, immune to temptation? 
Thus You are perfect, Lord,
          but no help to me, 
          Driven by hungers,
          Depressed by comparisons,
          Grasping at what is not mine? 

What is Your secret, Lord, how are you so free?
Perfect in love, but not loving the perfection,
Giving without stint.
Whether You have all or little, You give in love
and leave no room for envy. 

In love, God,
You are one of us in Jesus Christ,
little on earth, 
not grasping at equality with God,
but free for human living
even to death on the cross.

Here is hard help.
You do not tell us, Do not envy,
 – a bare command against the pressing temptation,
a counsel of perfection mocked by practicality.

Instead
You share envy-free living with us
Humble patient generous love,
giving not counting the cost,
powered by the paradox of resurrection joy: 

Envy dies when busy generosity
leaves it no soil to root in.

Haddon Willmer

O perfect Love, all human thought transcending,
lowly we bow in prayer before Your throne,
that ours may be a love which knows no ending:
love from the Holy Spirit, Father, Son.

Such perfect love, God’s gift to those who seek it:
free of all envy, graceful, unconfined.
May our compassion spread to those who need it,
selfless as that of Christ for humankind.

O perfect Life, give us in fullest measure
a tenderness, a sure and stedfast faith;
a patient hope, a grasp of heavenly treasure
with trust to take us calm through pain and death.

Grant us the joy which brightens earthly sorrow,
grant us the peace to ease all earthly strife;
and give us, Lord, who face an unknown morrow,
Your Spirit’s foretaste of eternal life.

David Mowbray, adapted from the text of Dorothy F Gurney

God our Father
You are the love that makes a world,
where there is no need to envy,
no sense of lack,
no perverse desire to be envied

secure in your gift,
set free with Your free love,
we are all together
equal in the peace of Christ

We pray for those who are troubled by envy,
we pray for ourselves troubled by envy,
allergic to the excellence and good fortune of others,
irritated every time they think of them or meet them
Christ have mercy

We pray for those who provoke envy
we pray for ourselves who provoke envy,
who depend on being envied;
for those who seem to have no worth to themselves
if they cannot make others envy them. 
Lord have mercy

By your Spirit, keep us in the love of God,
day by day this week.

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