True love is manifested in actions rather than words. Unlike the popular belief that it is measured by feelings, true love is measured by behavior. Feelings are subject to change but true love never changes because it is a principle. It transcends impulses that are triggered by emotions.
Love is what we do regardless of how we feel. Therefore, love encompasses a commitment. When couples enter into a marriage commitment, they vow to keep their love alive “in sickness and in health, for better or for worse, for richer or poorer.”
When people truly love, they are unselfish. This means that they are willing to give their love regardless of the other person’s response. It also means loving the unlovable; going out of one’s comfort zone to sacrifice for someone that may not reciprocate.
This is exactly what God did. The ultimate love of God was manifested in the plan of salvation, it was initiated by Him, all we have to do is respond: “We love Him because He first loves us” (1 John 4:19).
God’s love was so great and His desire to save was so strong that He made every conceivable provision for our salvation – even giving up the only Son He had to save us. The Father’s joy was Jesus and He expressed His love saying, “This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased” (Matthew 3:17). Yet, He did not withhold His only Son from us.
When Jesus was about to go through the process of torture that would lead to the cross, the anticipated great agony and the weight of sin crushed Him to the point that His sweat was drops of blood, a result of extreme mental anguish. Yet, His Father would not take the cup from His hands and instead strengthened His Son to drink the cup of suffering and death to make remission for our sins.
As Jesus was suffering agonizing pain on the cross, the Father’s heart was broken beyond description in grief over His Son. Yet, the Father allowed His Son to suffer to save us from sin. There are no adequate words to describe the love of God for fallen humanity, which is why the action of Him allowing Jesus to die, and Jesus offering Himself to die for our salvation, leaves no need for extra words (Romans 5:8). Actions speak louder than words.
“For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life” (John 3:16). Words fail us to express the depth of that eternal, changeless love. In awe, John simply said, “Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us” (1 John 3:1).
God performed the ultimate evidence of love: He died for us. “Greater love hath no man than this, that a man lay down his life for his friends” (John 15:13) and nothing can pluck us out of this love against our will (John 10:28).
Smitten by this love, Paul exclaims, “For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 9:38,39).
This is love, God is love.