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Great book by an equally great man I was a little less than half way though this book when I met Bob Goff He seemed to be chatting it up with some old friends in the lobby of a conference my husband and I attended We nervously lingered and I clutched my book, hoping for a signature Hey guys he exclaimed, as though he d ran into someold friends, grabbing us both in a big hug I m reading your fantastic book and I was hoping you d sign it if you have a second, I said I have all Great book by an equally great man I was a little less than half way though this book when I met Bob Goff He seemed to be chatting it up with some old friends in the lobby of a conference my husband and I attended We nervously lingered and I clutched my book, hoping for a signature Hey guys he exclaimed, as though he d ran into someold friends, grabbing us both in a big hug I m reading your fantastic book and I was hoping you d sign it if you have a second, I said I have all day, he answered as he took his time writing out a message on the title page His character in person totally matches the one present in the book, chapter by chapter, story by story He says what I ve been wondering if God had been trying to tell me for years, that Jesus doesn t want us to just stalk him, memorizing weird little details about him, Bible study after Bible studyhe wants us to join him Love doesn t just feel, or talk or learn Love does Bob s been on an exciting caper or a life He got into law school without passing the bar long, great story , he practices law from his office at a bench on Tom Sawyer Island, he became the consol to Uganda after thinking the request was a practical joke, he teaches at Point Loma and Pepperdine and uses his position to free wrongly imprissoned boys in Uganda as well as fighting for justice for children there You have got to read this book I enjoyed Love Does the stories were entertaining, it s a quick read, and I do think it communicates an important and necessary message I liked it enough to give it four stars despite the following negatives 1 Bob Goff and Donald Miller are friends and similar writers thinkers, and I had the same issue with this book as I have with Miller s the writing tends to annoy me I understand that the conversational style is an attempt at being frank and relatable, and to some degree it is, but t I enjoyed Love Does the stories were entertaining, it s a quick read, and I do think it communicates an important and necessary message I liked it enough to give it four stars despite the following negatives 1 Bob Goff and Donald Miller are friends and similar writers thinkers, and I had the same issue with this book as I have with Miller s the writing tends to annoy me I understand that the conversational style is an attempt at being frank and relatable, and to some degree it is, but the writing also comes across as dumbed down and condescending at times Bob Goff is obviously a smart man, and to me it feels like he is just trying to write how his readers might talk It reminds me of when an adult author attempts to create realistic dialogue for their child characters and completely misses the mark 2 My bigger problem with this book is the implication that love is not just the most important thing which I believe it is , but that it is pretty much the ONLY thing He knocks church, deep theological discussion, and particularly Bible studies He even goes so far as to compare studying the Bible to stalking Jesus, and says we re probably creeping God out He insists that rather than studying the Bible, we should be loving and imitating Jesus as if the two are mutually exclusive It s like if my husband left me a to do list and love notes all around the house, and I say, I m not going to bother reading those, I ll just LOVE him Studying the Bible sincerely, with a desire to know God is a way to learn to love Jesus better, not an alternative to loving him Those things being said, I ve already recommended this book to several people and I do think it s worth reading I was inspired albeit in kind of a vague, I should be a better person type way by the examples of real, acted out love in the book Bob Goff has done some amazing things in his life and probably gives great hugs I just wish he d been a littlebalanced in the writing of this book I ve had a hard time starting this post When I requested a review copy of Love Does from BookSneeze, I fully expected to rhapsodize about this book.Like many, I first encountered Bob Goff in the pages of Don Miller s fantastic book A Million Miles in a Thousand Years He seemed larger than life, yet the kind of person everyone would want to befriend.In fact, were Goff s path to cross with mine, I d insist on buying him a drink simply so I could hearof his stories.I completely understand w I ve had a hard time starting this post When I requested a review copy of Love Does from BookSneeze, I fully expected to rhapsodize about this book.Like many, I first encountered Bob Goff in the pages of Don Miller s fantastic book A Million Miles in a Thousand Years He seemed larger than life, yet the kind of person everyone would want to befriend.In fact, were Goff s path to cross with mine, I d insist on buying him a drink simply so I could hearof his stories.I completely understand why so many people are singing Love Does s praises Goff s life is naturally inspiring I was completely mystified when I started the book and did not immediately join in on the chorus.This is not to say I disliked the book This is also to say I respect what Goff has accomplished in writing a book and especially his decision to donate the proceeds to two organizations he supports I try to be mindful of the effort it takes to write a book whenever there is criticism to bestow Love Does consists of 30 short chapters, each containing a story of some antic or experience and followed by a spiritual truth of sorts At their best, they re contemporary parables This does not always come across as intended.Goff believes our lives should be fueled by love An active love This is a great model for us Some of his stories better reveal this truth than others For instance, were my car hit by an elderly lady to the point where I was ejected through the roof, I doubt I would walk over to her and thank her for hitting me and then consider it a cool story But this is how Bob reacts and the elderly lady has quite a response Love in action.On the other hand, Bob also considers sticking his friend with a 400 room service bill to be a great prank Maybe those of a higher financial eschelon have different criteria for pranks This might be the pitfall of reading instead of hearing certain stories Were Bob to tell them to me, I might howl with laughter but in reading them, we don t get facial expressions or intent aside from what we ascribe to it.Bob advocates for a life of whimsey and it s hard not to be drawn to that But what does whimsey look like in your life and mine Is whimsey only grand gestures and off the wall experiences A book should be the starting point in getting us to apply lessons to our own lives However, I had difficulty extracting meaning from several of Goff s experiences into application for my own life.One of the main reasons for this is many of his amazing experiences are the result of money and privilege Goff is a lawyer and has worked hard for what he has I don t begrudge him that However, we are not all so fortunate I cannot take last minute plane rides to meet with important dignitaries, nor will my office ever reside in an amusement park I will likely never be able to afford a sailboat and while it would be wonderful to be personally involved in an organization in Africa, I m doubtful that s in the cards.So what does Love Does look like in my life Where is the whimsey when you re a social worker nanny writer Goff doesn t hand his readers the answers but he does offer his phone number should anyone want to talk it out with him I just might do that some day.For now, I m considering how toactively love the people around me I m thinking about what a Bible Doing my favorite chapter might look like I m going to keep working on being the person God created me to be One day at a time I d give it a one star review but it s not terribly written The problem is the content and Mr Goff should take a chapter out of his own book and keep some things secret The book has some redemptive chapters however most of it comes across as bragging material about how great Mr Goff s life is.The sub title is Discover a secretly incredible life in an ordinary world Apparently the words if you have lots of money and time were left off.I do not know anyone including myself who has the mon I d give it a one star review but it s not terribly written The problem is the content and Mr Goff should take a chapter out of his own book and keep some things secret The book has some redemptive chapters however most of it comes across as bragging material about how great Mr Goff s life is.The sub title is Discover a secretly incredible life in an ordinary world Apparently the words if you have lots of money and time were left off.I do not know anyone including myself who has the money and or time to 1 Buy last minute round trip tickets for two to Europe and run around London for three days.2 Take a last minute trip to Yosemite and spend three days there.3 Spend 16 days in a sail boat race from California to Hawaii.4 Buy a painting that apparently is worth so much it comes with a faux version for hanging so the original is stored for safekeeping and then foolishly hang the original instead and then laugh when my kids ruin it during a rubber band fight.5 Own an oceanside house in San Diego AND a summer house in British Columbia I could add to this list but the reality is Mr Goff lives in a fantasy world Perhaps he means well and quite possibly I missed the boat on what this book was intended for but the only thing I came away with was money does indeed buy happiness.Mr Goff did a disservice to Christianity by publishing this book I would never have finished this book if a friend hadn t specifically given it to me to read I complained all the way through it and was thoroughly annoyed.Overall, I agree with the premise Christians need to stop talking about loving people and tangibly be there for them However, the entire book comes across as a look what I did with stretching comparisons to a vague concept of Jesus life There are no Scripture references and I often complained out loud How is anyone supposed to know I would never have finished this book if a friend hadn t specifically given it to me to read I complained all the way through it and was thoroughly annoyed.Overall, I agree with the premise Christians need to stop talking about loving people and tangibly be there for them However, the entire book comes across as a look what I did with stretching comparisons to a vague concept of Jesus life There are no Scripture references and I often complained out loud How is anyone supposed to know what Jesus is truly like without reading the Bible or knowing where to find Jesus The entire book was stories and nothing prescriptive for how to actually apply this concept to your own life, without copying his exact stories and let s face it you d have to be super rich to do that.I m so glad this book is over Let me start by saying how much I appreciate Bob Goff and the work he does for the glory of Christ In fact I think he is evendynamic and powerful in person than in print Love Does has the opportunity to motivate you to action, which I believe is Bob s whole purpose in writing it He recognizes too many Christians sit and talk about God without doing anything about it Bob has quite a collection of stories which range from risky to just plain unbelievable Each story is like a little prov Let me start by saying how much I appreciate Bob Goff and the work he does for the glory of Christ In fact I think he is evendynamic and powerful in person than in print Love Does has the opportunity to motivate you to action, which I believe is Bob s whole purpose in writing it He recognizes too many Christians sit and talk about God without doing anything about it Bob has quite a collection of stories which range from risky to just plain unbelievable Each story is like a little proverb Bob uses to connect his life story to the story of Christ Bob uses his own life to try to point believers to action in their independent pursuit of Christ In fact while the stories are all comical and powerful, I think Bob s most powerful story is not even included in this book.Here is my main concern with the book Bob often comes across antagonistic of the intellectual engagement with Jesus and the Bible Now I don t for a second believe Bob completely would dismiss these things, but there are a number of times he makes derogatory comments about these pursuits The problem is Bob is not a theologian I doubt he would ever want to be But as a result of this, he makes statements about the nature of God which have no ultimate tethering to the special revelation we have received from God, namely his word Instead these proverbs from Bob come interpreted almost solely through the lens of his own experience.While there is great wisdom contained in this book, I am a little concerned with his ethic of using experience as the primary agent to understand God s work in his life While this is one way to understand and engage God, it is not the sole, nor best way to understand who God is Love Does is definitely a good and inspiring read, but I would suggest approaching it with a balanced commitment to serious study about God as well I ve heard that Bob Goff is a great and inspirational speaker, and I can certainly believe that, but this book is a compilation of everything I hate about American Christian Culture The obsession with manliness and guy things Lame jokes and forced metaphors Reducing people to simplistic stereotypes the phrase bad guys is used repeatedly throughout Bizarre sweeping assumptions about people who aren t upper middle class white men The fact that some version of the phrase rode hard and p I ve heard that Bob Goff is a great and inspirational speaker, and I can certainly believe that, but this book is a compilation of everything I hate about American Christian Culture The obsession with manliness and guy things Lame jokes and forced metaphors Reducing people to simplistic stereotypes the phrase bad guys is used repeatedly throughout Bizarre sweeping assumptions about people who aren t upper middle class white men The fact that some version of the phrase rode hard and put away wet is used on TWO different occasions should tell you a lot.The book is formulaic, with almost every chapter starting with some story from Goff s life, which he then uses as an extended metaphor for some theory about God Possibly the most frustrating part of the book was that, for all the talk upfront about living out God s love rather than just talking about it, the majority of the stories have little to do with living out love and many of them are quite cringeworthy In particular, if I never ever hear another I swore she would be my wife the first second I laid eyes on her and then stalked her until she agreed to marry me story I will be very happy Anyone watching me read it would have seen me making a What the hell face quite a lot, andthan once I thought, Wow what an asshole I do believe that Goff has done some incredible things, particularly related to his anti trafficking work, but unfortunately the book touches on these things very little and spendstime talking about pranks, getting away with things, and whimsy OMG SO MUCH WHIMSY Many of the things he does are not so much evidence of his love as evidence of his lawyerly wealth, like flying his kids to 30 different countries on a moment s notice, and he seems oblivious to how much of what he gets away with is evidence of his privilege, not just a cute metaphor for being a Jesus freak I kept thinking that this book would be better subtitled Love Does A Story of Wealth and White Male Privilege.There are a number of good, pithy quotes about God from throughout the book, and I think it s well intentioned I just hated so much of it that I couldn t possibly want to recommend it to anyone If you really want to see what it looks like when Love Does, read Shane Claiborne I feel generous giving this book 3 stars, but hey, I m a generous guy There are several inspirational moments and I highlighted a few passages, but there are so many distractions from his message that I couldn t enjoy it as much as I had hoped.Based on his stories, aaccurate title would be Love Money Do Bob never acknowledges the fact that most of his adventures are possible solely because he has the time and money to do so Maybe I m a little jealous, but reading about him taking hi I feel generous giving this book 3 stars, but hey, I m a generous guy There are several inspirational moments and I highlighted a few passages, but there are so many distractions from his message that I couldn t enjoy it as much as I had hoped.Based on his stories, aaccurate title would be Love Money Do Bob never acknowledges the fact that most of his adventures are possible solely because he has the time and money to do so Maybe I m a little jealous, but reading about him taking his kids all across the world on the spur of the moment in the pursuit of whimsy is a little obnoxious It s not because he does stuff like this, it s because he seems to expect the reader to go out and do the same types of grandiose things because that s what love does He tells a story about how he pranks a friend for 400 In my world, that s not a prank that s thievery I find it hard to relate with a guy who can laugh about something like this The same thing happens when he buys an expensive painting like, really expensive and laughs when his kids mar it with a rubber band He does great things, but he also has so much money he can throw it around it seems.Another major criticism I have with Bob and Donald Miller is his que sera sera attitude toward Christianity I truly think they love Jesus, but some of their anecdotes dismiss the pursuit of knowledge about Christianity Bob compares Bible studies to stalking Jesus and says God wouldn t want us to stalk Jesus huh Even though he s not interested in some of theacademic aspects of the Bible, he implies that those who are interested are wasting their time.I would ve liked to have readabout his mission work in Uganda There are parts about it in the end, but I never got a real sense of how it all started Those parts are glossed over if not completely omitted , and how to start a mission this big would help peoplethan explaining the end result.So, yes I was inspired by some of the stories, but his book is less about Love Does andabout Look What I Did My dad, who loves me a lot, has been concerned for me since I rejected Christianity about a year and a half ago, and he bought me this book because he wants us to talk about spirituality through it He says he sees a lot of his own thoughts in its pages, and because I love my dad, I read the book like he asked I choose to lead with this introduction because I know that some Goodreads users will have the understandable opinion that a non Christian should not be reviewing a Christian book I get My dad, who loves me a lot, has been concerned for me since I rejected Christianity about a year and a half ago, and he bought me this book because he wants us to talk about spirituality through it He says he sees a lot of his own thoughts in its pages, and because I love my dad, I read the book like he asked I choose to lead with this introduction because I know that some Goodreads users will have the understandable opinion that a non Christian should not be reviewing a Christian book I get that, and on my own, I would not have read this in fact, it was offered to me for free through theVine program,than once, and I declined But this is kind of a special circumstance, so I m going to try to give a fair review, keeping in mind that I am no longer part of what I perceive the target audience to be It s OK if you skip the rest of the review here When I was a Christian, I was very involved with an organization called Young Life a nondenominational Christian outreach program with adults making friends with high school and middle school students and sharing the love of God with them , as a high school kid, a volunteer leader during college and law school, and a committee member when I finally finished school and got a job Bob Goff also has a long history with Young Life, and that shows in this book See, Young Life events often include a talk, with a familiar structure First, you tell a story, preferably a personal and embarrassing one, funny if possible Next, you make some kind of connection from your story to something about God A lot of Young Life speakers are very good at connecting these two parts of the talk, but in my experience, most people focusedon the original personal part that s how Young Life works It s less a school for teaching lessons,a chance to build relationships, and if your talk is a theological dud but shares a part of you that makes kids want to spend time and be honest and open with you, then you ve created opportunities for real friendships that may get explicit about Jesus at some point but, in what I always loved most about Young Life, if you make a real friend and don t Win Him For Jesus, that s still a worthwhile use of your time because it s about love and not about numbers Love Does is like a big collection of Young Life talks In each story, Goff tells an engaging tale an embarrassing first day at a new job, a sailing journey, a series of trips to meet with world leaders , then he drops a paragraph or two to share what God has in common with that story Explicitly, some of the chapters say that the story actually taught Goff the lesson, but that seems intellectually disingenuous I agree with the linkage of ideas but not with the actual historical causation in most of the chapters There are lots of crazy adventures and love being active and bewilderment at people who focuson rules and structures than on love and life and adventure I can see why my dad liked the book, and why many Christians will like the book It is a heartfelt plea for Christians to loosen up and have fun and lovefully.What it s not, though, is a complete gospel This is a Christianity without a cross Only one chapter explicitly mentions sin, and the corresponding image isn t really consistent with, say, the Garden of Eden story In Love Does, Goff writes a chapter about a time when, as a young boy, he asked to play with his dad s unloaded gun, something he had done many times before Goff s dad checked to make sure it was unloaded, then handed over the gun to the boy, who promptly squeezed the trigger and suffered an injury when it turned out that the gun was not, in fact, completely unloaded The image Goff draws is beautiful that his father was not angry with him but rather picked up the boy, getting blood on himself in the process, and got him the healing he needed Goff contrasts this with the religious idea of sin being missing the mark and making God mad instead, when people sin, God wants to hold them and heal them It s a moving picture of God s love, but it s not an orthodox view of sin In the example, Goff didn t do anything wrong the mistake was on the part of the father, who handed a small child a loaded gun to play with in the house, then graciously chose not to blame the kid for the father s mistake Sin, as we see it in the Bible, involves intentional actions or omissions by people against the God who loves them, and it separates them from the relationship He wants with them, which is such a serious thing that He sent Jesus to be tortured and murdered on a cross to provide a way to reconcile the relationship If sin is, as presented here, a matter of being in distress for someone else s mistake, and it just needs a hug, then the crucifixion is a well meaning but utterly pointless gesture on God s part When I was a Young Life leader, we learned to do four kinds of talks in order to give kids enough of a picture of God to let them make an informed decision on whether or not they wanted to follow Him Person of God talk about who God is and how much he loves us , Sin talk about what a big deal sin is and why trying to be nice people on our own isn t going to bring us to a healthy relationship with the God who loves us , Cross talk about what it means that Jesus died on a cross because it matters that much for God to restore our relationships with Him , and Appropriation talk about what life can should look like after someone chooses to follow Jesus and enjoy that perfect love relationship What Goff does here in this book is inspire the reader with some Person talks and a lot of Appropriation talks, but the middle two pieces aren t really here I certainly have no reason to think that Goff denies the middle two pieces, they just are not his focus here So I don t think many Christians would say that this book on its own covers all the bases to introduce a non believer to Jesus in a meaningful way Just dostuff that seems fun and that you love, because that s how you were made, is a beautiful part of the Christian life but not a great summary of what Jesus talked about in the Bible.Which doesn t make it a bad book Please read my criticisms as gentle Not every book needs to cover every part of a story The Lord of the Rings doesn t finish the tale in the first volume, and a book about Lincoln s presidency isn t bad because it doesn t list every single speech he made But potential readers need to know that Love Does is really best suited for people who are already Christians and want to live out their loveactively This is a book to loosen strict religious structures and energize Christ followers in enjoying their relationships in ways that arereal and have an impact This is a great gift for Christian college students or a church member who spendstime muttering through committee meetings than laughing with God It s an encouragement for Young Life leaders and wandering types who like Jesus but not Sunday morning church Even as a non Christian who does not believe in the God that Goff describes, I enjoyed the stories and learned some useful random tips sitting with palms up when it s important to be open and patient I just want to make sure that potential readers are aware of the limited nature of a book that is promoted as a Christian book and focuses so much on just a few parts of the story Again, I recognize that I am not qualified to analyze the merits of a book clearly written for an audience of which I am no longer a part You are free encouraged to conclude that I have no idea what I m talking about, as I wrote mostly about what my perspective concerns would have been if I had read this book while I still believed in God Don t leave a comment or anything I m not interested in a conversation about this book except with my dad but please feel free to ignore me completely I ll understand `Free Ebook ↵ Love Does: Discover a Secretly Incredible Life in an Ordinary World ⇺ Now a New York Times Bestseller As a college student he spentdays in the Pacific Ocean with five guys and a crate of canned meat As a father he took his kids on a world tour to eat ice cream with heads of state He made friends in Uganda, and they liked him so much he became the Ugandan consul He pursued his wife for three years before she agreed to date him His grades weren t good enough to get into law school, so he sat on a bench outside the Dean s office for seven days until they finally let him enrollBob Goff has become something of a legend, and his friends consider him the world s best kept secret Those same friends have long insisted he write a book What follows are paradigm shifts, musings, and stories from one of the world s most delightfully engaging and winsome people What fuels his impact Love But it s not the kind of love that stops at thoughts and feelings Bob s love takes action Bob believes Love DoesWhen Love Does, life gets interesting Each day turns into a hilarious, whimsical, meaningful chance that makes faith simple and real Each chapter is a story that forms a book, a life And this is one life you don t want to missLight and fun, unique and profound, the lessons drawn from Bob s life and attitude just might inspire you to be secretly incredible, too