Love Does, and So Can You

If you aren’t familiar with Bob Goff, or his book, Love Does, you should be. Seriously, stop reading this post and go pick up a copy of the book. You can come back here after you’re done reading it.

Last week, I had the joy of attending the Love Does Conference in Tacoma, Washington. The best way I could describe the event was that it felt like a glimpse of Heaven. There were ball pits, a bounce house, hundreds of balloons, free coffee and donuts, and over 1,000 people looking to discover more ways they could love others with the love of Christ. The overriding message was that love doesn’t argue about opinions or spend forever planning—Love actually does stuff. As Christians, we’re called to love people with the love of Jesus, and that can only happen if we actually get out there and do it.

Up until a few years ago, I would have left a conference such as this with the feeling that all these other folks in the room are such great Christians. I would walk away hoping that someday I could be good enough to finally catch fire for Jesus and make a difference. I’d want to love others without inhibition and see lives changed. But if I were being honest, I’d have to admit that I didn’t feel capable of doing anything. I felt like a B-team Christian.

But here’s what I know now. The very same Jesus that leaks out of Bob Goff, Donald Miller, and all the other speakers who inspired us to change the world lives in me. I don’t need to fix anything or arrive at a certain point before I can love others and change the world. I’ve got the full power of Jesus empowering me to do it right now. Every single person in that room—and every man reading this blog—if they have trusted in Jesus, has all the power and ability they need to make a difference today. The only thing required of us is to trust in His power, get off the couch, and actually start loving people.

One of the speakers, Randy Seiver, gave us an amazing illustration of this truth. He mentioned how we tend to look at church in the same way we look at professional sports. We feel as if we need to be Barry Bonds before we can step up to the plate. For some reason, we expect God is only happy with our home runs. In reality though, God is a loving father who sees us as his children—not his draft-picks—which means life in Christ is more like tee-ball than the major leagues.

Web_T-ballHave you ever seen a tee-ball game? They’re awesome. It’s a bunch of kids who have no idea what they’re doing, but they’re learning and they’re having fun. It doesn’t matter if little Billy actually hits the ball or knocks the tee out from under it, his parents still cheer as if he just hit a grand-slam. Half the kids aren’t even paying attention to the game—they’re off chasing bugs or picking flowers—but their parents still encourage them from the sidelines. If one of those kids does decide to pick up the ball and toss it back, the whole crowd goes wild. “Did you see that!? Billy just payed attention!”

God views us the same way. We’ll strike out a few times and get distracted as we try to spread the love of Jesus to those around us, but God cheers us on regardless. He knows you’re learning and growing. Honestly, I think He loves seeing the process as much as the end result. So don’t wait until you feel like you’re a spiritual MVP to start loving others. Get out there and spread that rookie love around.

That’s what love does.

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