Last week, Bob Goff came to speak at Anderson. And let me tell you what I think about Bob Goff. He is the best person on this planet!!! I read the book Love Does my senior year of high school and I thought wow, I want to be just like him. I can only hope to one day be on his level of “I just do whatever the heck I want.” I mean talk about someone who doesn’t care what others think of him; someone who is so willing to do things most people would consider absolutely outrageous just to spread the love of Christ. And like…he made his office in Disneyland!! [He is a Professor of Law among 5,000 other cool things.] Can you even do that?! I don’t know, but Bob Goff did.
Aside from being arguably the most interesting person ever in history, he carries with him the most amazing message. It was something that I didn’t know how much I needed to hear until I heard it.
Love. At first thought, it just seems like such a simple, common message. Love God. Love your neighbors. Love your enemies. We hear these things so often, and we are really convinced that we do them because we go to church and we buy our friends coffee and we choose not to talk about how bad that girl we don’t like’s hair looked today even though we want to.
But honestly how often do you stop to actually pay attention to how much and how well you’re loving? I’ve started asking myself if the people I love know without a shadow of a doubt that I love them, not just because I say I love them but because I SHOW them that I love them. How often do I actually do things that demonstrate “I love you” or “I care about you” or “I’m willing to sacrifice for you?” Because telling people you love them is important, but love doesn’t just talk. Love does, and I think we overlook that part of it way too often.
But what about the people who are hard to love? What about people who have done us wrong or people that we don’t even know? It was a lot easier for me to think of times that I showed love to my friends or family than times that I showed love to the people I pass by walking to class everyday but have never actually talked to.
Everyone you encounter should experience the love of God through you. I don’t know about you but that is a little intimidating for me to think about. I think this is because we make love so much more complicated than it needs to be. God doesn’t expect you to save someone’s life with your love!! That’s not your job, it’s His! Our job is just to open the door for Him. Sometimes we are given opportunities to do grand or outrageous things to show our love for somebody. Other times it’s as simple as a smile or an encouraging word. Neither one is more important or more impactful than the other. It’s a matter of just constantly being aware of if the way you’re living and the ways you’re treating others are reflections of Christ’s love. And if you are reflecting Christ’s love, actions will flow from that.
Yesterday, I knew that someone I’ve had a very up-and-down relationship with was having a bad day. So you know what I did? I literally just stuck a bag of bagels in their mailbox. It was the most spontaneous, insignificant thing but I knew it would show them that I cared about them despite anything that has happened between us. And trust me, I’m not trying to say that I’m the best ever at loving people. Because this person has also witnessed me do and say things that are the complete opposite of love. But it is never too late to start loving again; and God can use anything, even a bag of blueberry bagels, to do the work that only He can do.
We are wired to love people. God did not create us to sit around and aspire to a certain amount of love, He created us to make moves. And our love is so far from perfect, but that’s okay!!! We are called to do the absolute best that we can with what we have. When we are raised again with Christ, that’s when our love will never ever fail. But until then, God provides us with countless opportunities everyday to be His hands and feet through our love, and I’ve decided that I don’t want to miss a single one of them.