Healthy Self Sacrifice?

Is there a thing such as healthy self sacrifice? Where is the line between thoughtfulness and going out of your way for someone you care about, and being taken advantage of?

Right now, this very moment, it occurs to me. It’s with how you hold it. I tend to think the answer is with the other person. Like the difference is if they are grateful or if I do it again and again and its not reciprocated. I’m searching for some kind of balance, fairness, justice.

But giving, really giving, isn’t like that. It’s not to get something in return, and therefor there is nothing the other person can do to draw that line. Only you/me/the giver can make that line for him or her self.

If I’m being thoughtful and going out of my way out of an abundance of joy and desire to share unconditional love….unconditional – no strings attached…then it is impossible for me to be a door mat or taken advantage of. So I guess that’s a healthy self sacrifice. One that I do because I want to and not to get something from someone else. I cannot be taken advantage of if I’m only giving exactly what I want to and feel led to and from a place of freedom and love. From that place, I just release it, and the sacrifice becomes about how I’m being shaped instead of about how another person is or isn’t by my actions.

The other side is not giving freely, its obligation – a thing we saddle ourselves with – and a sense of what we should do. Ugh. No one wants that. Then we feel resentful when we go out of our way etc. Or we measure it against how much someone else has. Is it even? Is it fair? Do they love me as much as I love them? Also not fruitful.

God, let me be shaped by unconditional love and giving and grace. Help me to be that in the world…no strings attached.