Thursday, December 18, 2014

Day 352- A Phone First

I read a book a while back titled "Love Does" by Bob Goff.  I heard him speak on a podcast and loved his energy and ideas so I bought the book.  It's an outstanding book.  On the back of the book, he actually listed his phone number so that in his words, "If you ever want to talk about any of the ideas in this book that ping you, my phone number is ___. Give me a call sometime if I can be helpful." Today I called Bob Goff for my "first."

I've thought about this several times since buying the book.  But Bob is a pretty famous guy.  He's a lawyer, been approved by the State Department for appointment as consul for the Republic of Uganda to the United States.  Plus, he has a book that has sold really well.  Typically, I would not call a guy like this but it's a year of "firsts" so I called him.

Love Does is a book that really challenged me.  The stories in the book about some of the things God has enabled Bob to do are just mind blowing. 

Here are a few quotes from the book:
The reason Bob has impacted my life is because he loves me- from the forward by Donald Miller.
There’s no explanation for a man who can love this well save God. I think Bob Goff knows God, and I think God’s love flows through him- also from the forward by Donald Miller.
In the end, love doesn’t just keep thinking about it or keep planning for it. Simply put: love does.
Jesus told the people He was with that it’s not enough to just look like you love God. He said we’d know the extent of our love for God by how well we loved people.
I get the invitation every morning when I wake up to actually live a life of complete engagement, a life of whimsy, a life where love does.

Of course, the stories are the best.  He and his children wrote a bunch of famous world leaders and invited them to come to their house for a sleepover.  He says around 30 so far have taken him up on the invitation.  He wrote about being blindsided in his Jeep by a lady and later sent her flowers.  Who does that??  He just seems like the coolest kind of a guy so I called him.

Bob Goff

 Bob in Uganda

I really did not think I would talk to him. I figured by now his phone number would be changed from the back of the book or it would go to voice mail.  He answered on the second ring. I was so surprised I lost all phone manners. I almost always ask people if they are busy when I call, but not so with the famous person.  I had him on the phone and I did not want him to get away.

I told him I had read his book and he asked me what I thought about it. I appropriately fawned over it.  I asked him if he had any suggestions for me as a pastor to help our congregation live out "love does."   He had several suggestions.  He said one was to instead of asking people something like "How is your life working for you?" to ask people "How is our life working for the people around you?" If it is not working for the people around you, it's not working very well for you even if you think it is.  He also said he meets with a small group of guys and they don't do Bible study. They do Bible doings.   Here's how he wrote about it in the book, "So I started getting together with the same guys each week and instead of calling it a Bible study, we call it a “Bible doing.” At our Bible doing, we read what God has to say and then focus all of our attention on what we are going to do about it. Just agreeing isn’t enough. I can’t think of a single time where Jesus asked His friends to just agree with Him."

He also said it would be a great exercise to have all the spouses in the church to write a letter resigning from their job. He would then encourage them to give that letter to their spouse and says something like, "If this job ever becomes between us, you can mail that letter." He said that for it to spark conversation about how important we are to each other.  He does want spouses sending in resignations in the heat of an argument.

He also said that the wives needed to understand that whatever they tell their husbands they are they will probably turn into.  He was emphasizing the power of a wife's words to her husband. 

I loved the conversation with Bob. It was really cool that he would answer his phone and talk to me.  I hope I did not interrupt something, but thrilled that we had a conversation.  Maybe I should invite him over??

Looking to love in the abundant life,

3 things I thank God for today
1. Bob Goff
2. Love Does
3. Jesus is always available

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