Who to Love? For How Long? Everybody, Always

Say Who?

Just not her.

Anybody but him.

Sometimes we just want to say no. No, God, don’t ask me to love that person. Bring me someone else that’s not as messy. Not as rude. Not as…well, unlovable.

But that’s the person we need to love the most, yes?

Often my attempts fail miserably when I try to love THAT person. But even our weakest efforts count for something.

And even if our shaky love never reaches that person enough to be felt or to change them, maybe we are changed in the effort.

“Find a way to love difficult people more, and you’ll be living the big life Jesus talked about. Go find someone you’ve been avoiding and give away extravagant love to them. You’ll learn more about God, your neighbor, your enemies, and your faith.
– Bob Goff

Whether you have a messy person in your life right now or not, Bob Goff is a person who will inspire you to get out there and love people. Not because of who Bob is (well, maybe a little because of who Bob is; he’s stunning). And not because of who you are or they are. But be emboldened to love more because of who God is.

This is a beautifully motivating book by Bob, Everybody, Always: Becoming Love in a World Full of Setbacks and Difficult People. It’s full of his amazing personal stories, his encounters with interesting people, and his experiences with God. If you’re ever down or feel the world is too dark, read this book. You’ll be encouraged again.

And the next time you ask yourself—Who am I to love?—here’s a phenomenal answer:

“Every time I wonder who I should love and for how long I should love them, God continues to whisper to me: Everybody, always.

Quotes from Everybody, Always

I highlighted a gazillion lines from Everybody, Always. Here are a just a few from the many.

“What I had done is make it about me, yet again, and our lives will never be about Jesus if we keep making everything about us.”

“We don’t need to call everything we do ‘ministry.’ Just call it Tuesday. That’s what people who are becoming love do.”

“We can either keep track of all the good we’ve done or all the good God’s done. Only one will really matter to us.”

“What if we found out God’s big plan for our lives is that we wouldn’t spend so much of our time trying to figure out a big plan for our lives? Perhaps He just wants us to love Him and love each other.”

“Friendships can last a lifetime, but we make them three minutes at a time.”

You don’t need to take all the steps, just the next one. God may not give us all the green lights we want, but I’m confident He gives us all the green lights He wants us to have at the time. Go with what you’ve got.”

“We’re not held back by what we don’t have, but what we don’t use.”

“I’ll say I am too busy to help someone in need, when it isn’t time I lack; it’s compassion.”

People don’t grow where they’re planted; they grow where they’re loved.”

“Don’t worry about who’s in the Oval Office with the launch codes. Your oval office is a circle thirty feet around you. Go love the people in that circle. Fill it with difficult people, the ones you’ve been avoiding, the ones you disagree with, the ones who are hard to get along with. Go find a couple of witch doctors.”

* * *

Do you have a difficult person in your life? Are they hard to love? Please share in the comments how you’re overcoming reluctance.

sharing with Kelly, Char, Meg, Ronja,
Anita, Terri, Gayl

My thanks to Net Galley
for the review copy of this book

26 thoughts on “Who to Love? For How Long? Everybody, Always

    1. LisaNotes Post author

      Exactly. I wasn’t sure how this new book would stand up to Love Does because I loved that one. But it’s right up there beside it.
      I have Bob Goff’s wife’s book on audio but haven’t begun listening to it yet, “Love Lives Here.” It’s the free selection of the month if you’re into audiobooks at ChristianAudio.com.

  1. Lesley

    This sounds like a great book! I loved the quotes you shared, and I like the idea that even if we don’t love perfectly, we can be changed by making the effort!

    1. LisaNotes Post author

      That quote stood out to me, too. I’m helped by a baby-steps approach to most everything. 🙂 I’m currently on a project to clean out my laundry room, a few minutes at a time. ha.

    1. LisaNotes Post author

      I love Bob Goff, too. He’s one of those rare individuals who radiates hope and love everywhere he goes. I can’t imagine hanging out with him in real life. 🙂

    1. LisaNotes Post author

      I wish I could have shared even more quotes, Pam, but I didn’t want to make the post too long. I marked up SO many places in the book. It’s a really good one!

  2. Debbie

    I recently purchased this book for my Kindle and began reading it. So far I really like it. I read his last book and enjoyed that too. They are to know us by our love. Such a good lesson on who to love and how to love like Jesus.

    1. LisaNotes Post author

      I’m glad you’re reading Everybody Always, too, Debbie! I loved his last book as well, and look forward to listening to his wife’s book. I downloaded it free from christianaudio.com this month but haven’t started it yet. It will be interesting to hear things from her perspective. 🙂

  3. Carri

    I love this post! We are commanded to love everyone…no exceptions. But–wow!—is that difficult to do sometimes. When I was a teenager, there was a girl at school who made it her mission to make my life miserable. She succeeded until one memorable day when I prayed to God asking for Him to replace my feelings of anger for her with feelings of kindness. He did so immediately, in a most miraculous way. It was an experience I’ll never forget. Thank you for the encouraging post!

    1. LisaNotes Post author

      Wow, Carri. That’s an amazing testimony you have with the girl from high school! Experiences like that with God never leave us. I appreciate you sharing it here. There definitely are some people who are harder to love than others; I’m thankful for God’s grace to help us.

  4. Ronja

    Thank you for this review! I have certainly been challenged to love people at times, so this would be a great read. Thank you for linking up over at GraceFull Tuesday!

  5. Jean Wise

    wow all the quotes won me over but that first one about 30 seconds, then 30 second more wow’d me completely. I can do 30 seconds. – that is full of hope for me when it comes to difficult people. yep ordered the book too! You are such a good source of great reading. Thanks Lisa

  6. floyd samons

    Your posts often pinpoint issues I struggle with, but this one feels like it was written. for me.

    Praying to make it past 30 seconds with the person God knows I’m struggling with.

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