Love Does :: a book review

I recently finished reading Love Does: Discover a Secretly Incredible Life in an Ordinary World by Bob Goff.

Here’s a pic of the copy I borrowed from the library:

love does2

Love Does is an extremely easy read. Well-written, this book contains 31 relatively short chapters. Each chapter begins with a story of one of Bob Goff’s life experiences. At the end, he ties the story in to a lesson about following Jesus and what he thinks it means to be a Christian.

The focus of the book is – well, exactly what the title says – Love Does. He states it well in his introduction:

“…love is never stationary.
In the end, love doesn’t just keep thinking about it or keep planning for it.
Simply put: love does.”

This is the theme that carries throughout the entire book. Goff weaves the lesson throughout stories of an old lady ramming into his Jeep, his kids being invited to meet with world leaders in other countries, sneaking onto the set of National Treasure 2, a story about his first night as a waiter {which, by the way, was so hilarious that I concerned my children with my loud laughing}, and many others.

What I Loved:

  • this book made me think a lot about love. Specifically, it made me think about how I show love to others.
  • it made me realize how little I actually show love. Sure – I may think loving thoughts towards someone, but how do they know I love them? More often than not – they probably don’t.
  • it was extremely entertaining. I laughed – a lot – while reading this book. I rarely laugh while reading. I may be amused, but rarely do I actually vocalize laughter. I did it a lot while reading Love Does. 
  • it was hard to put down. I forget when I started/ended it, but I think it took 2-3 days. All this while dabbling in other books, taking care of kids and my man – let’s just say I sacrificed some sleeping time to read this book.


What I Didn’t Love:

  • Love Does didn’t leave me with an exalted view of who God is – specifically in His holiness. Since from what I read, God makes His holiness a priority, it concerned me that I finished this book without that impression of Him being an exalted and holy God.
  • There are several statements in the book that could have gone un-written and made it a lot better for me. Most of these occurred right after the chapter title. My guess is that Goff was trying to elicit interest in the chapter by including a sentence summary of the lesson before launching into his story. Statements such as, “I used to think I could learn Jesus by studying Him, but now I know Jesus doesn’t want stalkers.” (page 197) As you read the chapter (“Memorizing Jesus”), you will understand Goff’s point: don’t just study things about Jesus; do them! Great point. Still not a fan of the statement preceding the chapter.


All in all, when I finished Love Does, I was left with 2 main thoughts:

  1. I want to cultivate a love that does for people. A love that gives, prays, sacrifices, cares for – a love that you can see – the kind of love Jesus continues to shower on me.
  2. I want to go read my Bible. Because reading religious books can never replace God’s Word. Because every book/magazine article/blog post must be measured by the truthfulness of Scripture. Because there were some things in this book that gave a different emphasis than I see in Scripture, so I wanted to gain clarity by turning to the Book of books. In short: read books. But read your Bible more.


Have you read Love Does? What’s one way you have had love shown to you in a real & tangible way?








Don’t want to miss a post?
Sign up to get free email updates
connect with me on facebook!


  1. Kristen says:

    I read this book in January and really enjoyed it, too. It was a great reminder to show my love. I was reminded that we need to live our lives in love, which I think was Bob’s main focus, because truly, love that comes from God, should Do!

  2. brownsugartoast says:

    Yes!! It was such an encouragement to me as well! Glad you liked it, Kristen. Thanks for stopping by!

  3. Keren Threlfall says:

    I read this book last August, and also came away with mixed feelings.

    I think one other of my big concerns was Goff’s portrayal of love in action as being flamboyant and sensational. But “love doing” often looks like the young mother silently caring for her little ones while also caring for aging grandparents, day in and day out. She might not have a blog or Facebook to share about it, or ever hear her name praised publicly; but if her care is flowing out of her love for people and God she is certainly “doing love” in a much bigger way than the romanticized missions trip or turning people into projects. It is through mundane love that we see love stripped to its core–devoid of all the extras and attention grabbers, but love in its purest, most undefiled forms. (Not that it’s a contest, either.)

    And after reading such books, like you mentioned, it’s important to remind ourselves that faith in action (“love does”) is not mutually exclusive to faith in study (theology). In fact, Scripture makes it quite clear that both are necessary, and an over or under emphasis on either can be dangerous.

    But yes, it is certainly inspiring, and makes the reader (at least me) want to do more than just talk about “love.”

Comments are closed.