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Alfred H. Miles, ed. The Sacred Poets of the Nineteenth Century. 1907.

By Hymns (1867). II. “Lord, I would choose”

Walter Chalmers Smith (1824–1908)

  • “Mary hath chosen that good part.”
  • —Luke x. 42.

  • LORD, I would choose the better part

    Which none may take away from me;

    Let me not fret with anxious heart,

    But sit at peace, and hold with Thee

    Communion sweet here at Thy feet.

    There be that love Thee well and true,

    And yet they vex their souls with care;

    For still much service they will do,

    And many needless vessels bear,

    And they with such are cumbered much.

    They love Thee, Lord, and Thy good word,

    Yet of Thy joy they stint their heart,

    And grudge the peace Thou dost accord

    To them that choose the better part;

    And, idly faint, they make complaint.

    The one thing needful let me do,

    Nor let my service cumber me;

    Who serve the Lord must hold in view

    They need Him more than needeth He;

    Who serve Him best in Him too rest.

    So would I rest, Lord, at Thy feet,

    And learn of Thee, and look above;

    Doing the service that is meet,

    But free to worship and to love,

    And find increase of grace and peace.