Love Does: The Extraordinary Life of Bob Goff

It’s been said Bob Goff is the most famous man no one has heard of.

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Traveling to work one morning about 9 months ago I was listening to a podcast. (My 50 minute commute to work via train and bus is the perfect place to get some reading and “faith building” teaching in.) The podcast I listened to that morning featured an interview with a guy I had never heard of; a gentleman by the name of Bob Goff.

As I listened to the interview I was struck by how much Bob simply radiated “life”. It was if it was coming through the iPad into my spirit. Apparently I was not the only one who felt this way as at one point the interviewer exclaimed, ” Bob, I just have to hug you!”

So what is the secret to Bob’s uncanny ability to affect people so positively? It probably comes down to one simple thing.

He makes time for people…

Bob Goff has learned the secret that if you truly want to demonstrate to people that you love them then you have to make time for them!

In his book Love Does, he mentions some of the guiding principals he lives his life by. One of these principals is that he doesn’t let his phone go to voice mail. As much as possible he attempts to answer each phone call he receives. Even more incredible is that at the back of the book he provides his personal phone number.

Goff explains that rather than seeing phone calls as a nuisance, he views them as opportunities to engage with people. People are always “busy” but Goff remarks that it seemed the busier Jesus got, the more time he had for people. Love doesn’t talk…Love does.

The book chronicles some of his extraordinary achievements and ways of doing life:

  • Because of his relief work in Uganda, the Ugandan government has made him a diplomatic counsel for the country
  • His grades weren’t good enough for law school so he sat outside the Dean’s office until they let him in.
  • He doesn’t make appointments. He wants to be available as much as he can “now” for people.
  • Every Thursday he quits or gets rid of something. He says our lives get to full and this allows God opportunity to open up new opportunities.

Since reading Love Does I have given a few talks using Goff and his book as an inspiration. A Sunday morning church service, a work leadership weekend, and a book and coffee club. Of all the references to different teachers and books that have inspired me recently, Bob Goff and Love Does are what people most come back to me and want to talk about.

Why you may ask?

Because Bob Goff imitates Christ.

  • He doesn’t do clever theology
  • He doesn’t “wow” people with deep insights into the nature of God.
  • He doesn’t cast a vision for people to follow.

He simply loves people and makes time for them… And like Jesus that’s made him a pretty popular guy.

God isn’t looking for witty insights into his character to be shared on Facebook near as much as he is looking for sons and daughters who know Him and are ready to take up their position in the Kingdom primarily by displaying compassion to those around.

I know this because I’m pretty good at the former and a little weak in the latter. I’m trying to reverse that and people like Bob Goff are an inspiration to do so. He not only teaches but sets the example of how to live a Christ fueled extraordinary life in an ordinary world.

4 comments

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  • Steve

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    ‘God isn’t looking for witty insights into his character to be shared on Facebook near as much as he is looking for sons and daughters who know Him and are ready to take up their position in the Kingdom primarily by displaying compassion to those around.’ Was writing some stuff on being a father today and came across this … similar line of thinking …

    by Dr Myles Munroe ‘Fathers are difficult to find because fathering has more to do with care than with charisma. It has more to do with responsibility than with performance. It has more to do with leadership, accountability and love than with fame, exposure and glory. Fathering requires a commitment to nurturing and developing others rather than using and benefiting from others.’

    Think I better read ‘Love Does’ … sounds awesome

    • Steve

      Reply

      Steve, I think you and Bob Goff have a lot in common. You will enjoy the book!

  • Steve I read Love Does and when I came to the end I called Bob. He answered on the second ring and we had a delightful conversation. It was a Friday afternoon and as it so happened he would be speaking at a church in Nashville the following Sunday. Susan and I went and heard him and he was just as genuine as he comes across in his book.

    • Steve

      Reply

      Bob, that is so encouraging to hear! And you are braver than I…I haven’t been able to work up the courage yet to call 🙂

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