A young man and a young woman had pledged to each other and were looking forward to a near wedding day when the young man was suddenly called to service. From the warfare field, letters regularly came and went, and love shone brightly in all of them. Then, letters from the young man abruptly ceased. A few weeks passed, and a letter came in a strange handwriting. In it, the young woman read:

“There has been another battle. I have lost both my arms. I asked my

comrade to write this for me and to tell you that I release you from our

troth, for now, I will not be able to work and support you.”

That letter was never answered. By the next train, the young woman journeyed southward. She left the train and went directly to the hospital. Inquiring about the location of the young man’s cot, she quietly approached and suddenly flung herself down by the side of his cot with the passionate words, “I will never give you up. These hands of mine will work for you. We will live our life of love together.” (S. E. DuBois, in Gospel Herald Knight’s Master Book of New Illustrations)

Love at its best is selfless. It is the true nature of love (John 3:16; 1 Corinthians 13:4-8) that causes Christ to die a brutal death for people who did not desire Him (Romans 3:11) or deserve His love (Ephesians 2:1-10). Christ’s selflessness led to love being manifested at its very best (John 15:13; “Greater love has no one than this that one lay down his life for a friend.”). When this kind of love is hard to express, it is best displayed by selfless acts of love.

A class of little girls was learning to spell. They spelled several small words, such as pig, cat, dog, cow, and amused themselves by imitating the sounds that these animals make. Then, little Mary was asked to spell love. She didn’t stop to give the letters, but ran, threw her arms around the teacher’s neck, and kissed her on the cheek. “We spell love that way at our house,” she said. The girls laughed, but the teacher said, “That is a beautiful way, but do you know another way to spell love?” “Oh, yes,” cried Mary, “I spell love this way,” and she began to put the books in order on her teacher’s desk. “I spell love by helping everybody when they need me.” (from Illustrations of Bible Truths Copyright © 1995, 1998 by AMG International, Inc. All rights reserved. Used by permission.)

“Many waters cannot quench love, nor will rivers overflow it; If a man were to give all the riches of his house for love, it would be utterly despised.”  (Song 8:7; NASU)