Hearing Bob Goff speak on Thursday night was a breath of fresh air. Hearing what he had to say and feeling his warmth stretch out across Boone’s convocation center reminded me how rare it is to come across someone who is so free in who they are and how they express themselves. Bob spoke mostly about what his book deals with: living out love and actually doing things in love. As a college student especially, this resonated with me. So much of college (particularly when you’re studying for a bachelor of arts) involves talking, writing, and thinking about big ideas and subjects that matter. And that’s all very good. But I know for me, I needed Bob’s enlivening reminder that the ‘talking, writing, and thinking’ doesn’t count for anything unless I do something about it.
Bob has several life-isms which I found both funny and inspiring. For one – every Thursday, Bob quits something. Whether it’s a meeting, a project, some sort of commitment, etcetera. He believes that people need to experience the freedom of letting something go on a regular basis. From the perspective of someone who’s life is chock full of deadlines and obligations, this struck me as exhilarating and also terrifying. I imagined implementing this in my life and the rush I got caused me to think his advice is correct. I live a life so in service to deadlines and to-do lists that I almost end up worshipping them in a sense. No, I don’t get together with some friends and lift my hands to the task god every Monday. But if worship is defined as dedication, respect, and honor…then yeah, I worship my deadlines. Or I at least try. And when I don’t, I feel guilty. Don’t get me wrong. Deadlines are definitely good and we shouldn’t just all stop caring. I’m NOT saying that. But I’m wondering if I need to zoom my perspective out, realizing that my deadlines and tasks are a very small part of the massiveness of what God is up to in my life. I want to serve God by meeting my deadlines and fulfilling my commitments, rather than worship those things, meanwhile complaining that I don’t have enough time for God.
Bob also (almost) never lets a phone call go to voicemail. He takes every call, unless it’s impossible (oh, and by the way, he noted his phone number in his book, so he obviously gets a lot of calls, and from people he’s never met). He wants to always make time for people. He wants to invest in people. So therefore picking up the phone is a necessary part of that. How cool is he?!
Bob loves Jesus, and it’s inherently clear that this is true…just in the way he talks and what he has to say. He loves to laugh, and he just wants to love and have fun with people who need it. Yes, I sound painfully cliché right now. But it’s a challenging cliché when he doesn’t just talk about loving people and serving God…he actually DOES it.
I’m definitely going to read his book ASAP…perhaps I’ll read it after I quit something this Thursday? ; )