Thursday, October 22, 2015

LOVE DOES by Bob Goff



October is always "stewardship" month in our Methodist church. We've had some great Octobers in the past with some great themes but THIS YEAR - THIS YEAR is the best theme ever. Our pastors have been preaching on the theme Love Does and we, the church folks, were offered the chance to use the Love Does book and DVD's by Bob Goff in our Sunday School classes.  Our class chose to go along with the series and I am so very thankful that we did.  I've been teaching adult Sunday School for 24 years and this book is one of my top five choices from all those years.  I've laughed out loud. I've sobbed (Mark went to the storage unit last night to get some twin beds for Laura's new townhouse and he came home and saw my face and said, "Oh no - what happened?" It dawned on me that he could tell I had been crying and I said, "the book." That's all he needed to know what was indeed wrong.) I've been moved to know God better and to follow him. I've been moved to DO something - not sure what yet. One of the other times in my life where I felt God move in such a powerful way was on my Emmaus Walk and I could feel God working and I told people that I knew God was going to use me . . .I just didn't know how.  Right after that, I started teaching Sunday School!  I didn't speak in public at that time. I wasn't qualified to teach. BUT God had other plans! So now I'm feeling that big nudge again and it frightens me a little - heck, a lot -- what if he wants me to go to Haiti or Africa or Panama? The nudge frightens me, I must admit.

Stewardship is about so much more than just money. God wants to work in us. He wants to change us and change is scary. He wants us to be generous - with our tithes and offerings. He wants us to be generous with our time. He wants us to be generous with his grace (it was his first and he shared it with us and now we MUST share it with others). He wants us to be generous with love. He wants us to DO something because he is love and LOVE DOES! 

I think that Bob Goff would fit right into our John Wesley class. He loves to laugh - we do, too. The first screen on the DVD shows a restaurant and a bottle of wine - check! Did you know that he put his phone number in the book so that anyone can call him? He answers his own phone! I might just call him one day!  He writes and says things in a way that resonate with me - I feel some of these things all the way down to the very core of my being.

I feel like I've been holding God at a distance - at least an arm length away - which is not unusual for me because I have space issues - right, friends? This book has given me that glimpse - that thought - that understanding - that God is so very close. God wants to be right with me. He loves me. I'm ok with people being in my space whom I love so I'm happy for God to be in my space.  He loves YOU, too! He loves us even when we screw up royally (which I do at least ONCE a day - usually more).

I love this - he writes, "It taught me something about faith. It taught me that when God is big enough and loves me enough to say He forgives me, I should actually believe Him. I mean, I shouldn't keep feeling bad about all of the times I've messed up because that's ignoring what God said.  When I don't trust God's forgiveness, it's kind of like saying I really don't believe He's that good."  Isn't that powerful???

I have passage after passage highlighted and even have a big orange sharpie arrow mark on one page. I want to devour the book but I want to savor it, too!

I highly recommend this book!

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