When Love Doesn’t Win (#441)

What do you do when the person you've poured so much love on doesn't love you back, doesn't blossom or succeed, didn't heal, or maybe even got more deeply into serious problems? Can forcing our love on someone who doesn't want it become destructive to them? Wayne interacts with an email from Emmett who has been contemplating the depth of love in his own life and how it applies to people around us that seem to reject or abuse it. How love intersects with human freedom is one of the puzzling realities of this journey and the only way to sort it out is to learn love from the author of love himself.

Podcast Links:
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Wayne's review of John Lynch's ON MY WORST DAY
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  1. I like what Darren Hufford said a love time ago – that love is exclusively something that is given, not received. If you tie that in with others have said about learning to love without expectation, you come to a freedom in love. Not that this is easy, but well worth it.

  2. I liked this because it wasn’t the usual throwing out of the cliche “love wins!”. You actually examined what it means and spelled it out. Too often, I see Christians throw it out like some sort of panacea. It sounds good, but what does it “really” mean that “love wins”? That’s the conversation I wish more people would have.

  3. Hi Wayne,
    I cringed when I read the title of this podcast. I am the Mom with the 2 girls you talked about, I was about to hear my loving was not going to fix this problem we are having.

    I have read Emmett’s posts with great interest and gleaned from him his ideas to help me to just sort daily life with the Lord.

    This was a wonderful podcast! I feel like no matter what the end result will be, If I can keep giving these girls affection (through my words and action, they are still under our roof and dependent on us)
    with out malipulating or bullying them into how I think they ought to be, then our relationship, which I value so much, will continue.

    During the converation the girls had with me, they told me they thought I would freak because I used to be so “religious”. I told them I still was, actually more religious than before – I did not want at that moment to go into my journey, but I did tell them the closer you get to Jesus, the more love you have to give to people.

    The Heathen – you nailed it. Is it love at all? How if reflects on me and our family – nailed that too.

    I was thinking about the Prodigal Son too! The Father let him go. Out of love he let him go. Painful thought for me. And God did the same thing knowing how it would end for his Son on the cross.

  4. When Loving the difficult person hurts, my courage to keep going comes from knowing I’m not alone in the Loving. It’s God Himself in me Loving this person. My smile of encouragement is God smiling with my face. We do each kindness together; Jesus and me – together! He is the major do-er. I’m invited to come along and just do ‘whatever I see Him doing.’

  5. Thanks again Wayne (& Emmett);. I remember reading a book by that name! Love wins! – really? Who says? I also read that love is never self-seeking which I interpret as meaning “Love doesn’t need to win!”.
    Thanks for being there on this confusing, painful and sometime lonely journey (but I wouldn’t have it any other way!)

  6. Love has won already, god is love and trust is really the requirement to receive rest! How often I need to tell myself that! Lol. Maybe our concept of a cotton will love needs to evaporate. Nothing soft about god. The almighty. It’s an illusion to believe love is not tuff love builds courage. Here’s whenlove rockets, when it embraces truth and we choose to accept anyway! That’s not being soft however. It’s loving enough to disagree with sin yet stand on the truth of who we are. Children with a fathers blessing and authority. No compromise no nonsense. Just honesty. Only way to freedom.

  7. Hello family ! I really enjoyed this podcast it is very relevant to where I am at in my journey! Very helpfull in confirming what Father Has been enviting me into in a couple ongoing situations! I really enjoyed the term “delighted affection” this describes very well what I am experiencing increasingly towards the wonderful people in my everyday life He is loving , and inviting me to join Him in loving them! It just Happens naturally without me trying, most times I am involved with loving them before I even have time to realize what is happening. It just happens! This prosess brings more joy than I can put in words !! I could be wrong but it seems He chooses who I get to love . If love is returned it is like an unexpected bonus that usuly overwhelms me to the point I need some recovery time alone with my love in the Garden He is working on in My heart. This may sound over the top but does not even begin to describe The Love I am finding in Him. I am getting to taste the the love Between Father and Son and Join them in this river of Love you speak of Wayne! 🙂 Please continue to put words to what it becoming a reality to us as we awaken into the new creation. I love it!!!!! Our lives are becoming so full it is becoming more difficult to keep up with comments and podcasts but when I get the chance it is always very rewarding!!!!! Thank you my wonderful big family !

  8. Great topic!

    I feel that as a Christian, we are asked to love the unlovable. There’s a verse in scripture that talks about it. I find myself in many relationships such as this, and as Emmett intimated, sometimes you simply have to say enough is enough, and love from afar.

    I have had a situation with such person, with whom we share a mutual friend. It became clear to me he was trying to undermine the relationship, one of the very few I have where there is a give-and-take. I had to distance myself. I since haven’t heard from this person. There’s a saying I’m familiar with, ‘the devil is a perfect gentleman, he won’t go where he isn’t wanted.’ Not saying this person is the devil, but definitely what he was trying to do was devilish in nature.

    Sometimes my love tank runs low, and I find myself not being able to be there for people who may not want love, but need love. I am fortunate enough to have family members in my life that are able to love me, and of course Jesus, though I don’t always feel that love.

    There’s a phrase in Christian circles, ‘I love you with the love of the Lord’, that people use. How exactly do you do that? There is no way I can love like the Lord loves. His love is perfect, mine is not.

  9. I’m very much enjoying the e-thoughts as well! Harvey it’s exciting to see your enthusiasm and where Father is taking you and teaching you. Thanks for sharing. Ron I appreciate your thoughts on the complexity of “how to” love (especially the unlovable). Having been raised in a very “strict/tough” environment, “fear of God” etc I am processing what it means to love those who still want to relate to me…when my understanding/view of who God is and His heart, is so radically different from theirs. I appreciate coming back to what different ppl have said. Once we know we’re loved, once we’ve been touched by His love…it’s not a performing “Now I’ll love you”…it’s something that flows out of ppl. I confess I’m not quite in that space yet…still lots of processing and learning. Learning to live in His life and knowing that the painful process of that learning is shared. I guess that’s part of the encouragement He gives to us. There are others learning the same things and walking the same road.

  10. I really appreciated this podcast and the comments. I want to share something too (don’t remember if I shared this before). It’s from a dream a couple of years ago: I was in a garden, and I wanted to plant a nice fruit tree. I’m not the gardening type, and I don’t really know the first thing about it, but I really wanted to plant a fruit tree…So I sort of shifted a bit of dirt, and planted the seed. I put fertilizer on it, and watered it every day. Day after day, I would water my plant and was eager to watch it grow.

    But I found the plant, once it had reached about a foot high, withered and died; and I was just left with this shell of a plant with completely dead brown leaves. So I tried planting another tree, but that one died too. This happened time and time again, and eventually I had this big long line of dead trees with dead brown leaves in my garden, all about a foot high. I got frustrated, and asked myself what I was doing wrong. A voice told me: “You are not planting the seed deep enough”.

    So this time, I took a seed, and dug a hole a few feet deep. I don’t know if that’s a smart thing to do if I was really gardening, but anyway… Day after day, I came back to the spot where I planted the seed, but I couldn’t see the slightest sign of a tree. Usually I saw shoots from my other trees a few days after I planted them, but this time I waited weeks and months, and I still didn’t see anything surfacing. I said to myself, “it seems like this shoot will never come up”.

    I don’t remember whether I did see that shoot come up in the end, but I knew that when it did, it wouldn’t die like the others, but would go on to produce real fruit. I was just wondering: do you think love is like that? Do you think we could wait a long time before its growth ever sees the light of day? I’m just hoping/praying that whatever God has planted deep down in our hearts, that it would continue to work and grow, and that it will eventually surface.

  11. Hi Andrew. Not sure if this will fit with what you’re commenting on…anyway here goes! (smile) There are times when this process takes so-o-o-o-o very long. At times I see two or three steps forward and then one back again…in my conversations with Father I also have had that sense of this work being much deeper. I think we’re in a hurry and we have false expectations of time frames. Reminds me of when Jesus told the story about a farmer planting seeds. Some of them grew with great excitement but then withered b/c they were never very deep into the soil and so no fruit came. Yes it seems that genuine love flowing out of our life in Him and being secure in His affection for us will grow and take time to produce lasting fruit.

  12. Hi Sue 🙂 I guess that’s what I was feeling. It seems like a long wait, and it hurts/takes its toll from time to time – I was just hoping that the kind things that God does along the way would “sink in” & want to “get”/understand what Ron mentioned, about loving people how God loves.

  13. Thanks Andrew. Yes I think I also feel that pain…this process does hurt at times…seems that the encouragement Father continues to focus on is that as well as He is with us….there are others experiencing the same things. (smile) Also Hebrews mentions a mysterious thing “Jesus learned obedience through the things He suffered”…seems that in a way shrouded in mystery, He also walked through learning and growing when He lived in an earthly body here. It also says “He offered loud cries and tears”. Hmmm wow!!!!!!

  14. Hey Andrew, I love Your dream . Father is not limited in His ways of communication. For me the Growth That has turned my world upside down , was underground for about 2-1/2 years before it ever broke the surface . I know the pain you are talking about very well and my heart goes out to you ! When what He was doing finally broke free it was different from all other growth I had experienced. Towards the end of that season I had stopped keeping track of time altogether . I Had come to enjoy it To the point It caught me totally off guard when the shoot broke free. It reminds me of the saying “a watched pot never boils”. Let me tell you it is worth waiting a lifetime for !!! Now those 2-1/2 years seem like a very short time to wait for what I am finding . And I have been Catching a glimpse recently that I am just getting my toes wet in this river of love and life .There is a reality Much deeper and So once again I find myself waiting and relying fully on Him to teach me to swim it seems we explore a little deeper each day . The time is going by much quicker now though because I am in love. More time just means, more time with Him. We enjoy exactly where I am at every day! Time Has now become a Good thing I enjoy. Never thought I would say that!!!!!!! But somehow it Has become true! You are on an awesome journey it leads to death to self but LIFE In Him. I am excited for you!!!

  15. Hi again Sue, thanks for sharing your thoughts. I’ve been thinking quite a bit today about what you shared this morning. I remember reading those verses in Hebrews not too long ago (not how I normally think of Jesus life on earth). It’s amazing to think that even Jesus offered up loud cries and tears…it reminds me of Romans 8, how it says the Spirit cries or groans on our behalf and helps us in our weakness. That part of how God works through us is a mystery to me too.

    Harvey, thanks for your encouragement. I like it how you said “a watched pot never boils”. When you talk about life in Him, it seems like he might lead us to stop counting, measuring and keeping track of things that were once a much greater focus for us.

  16. Wayne and emmett. Well handled such an emitional topic for people.

    ooh, how I feel for those called to engage in love with broken/hurting people that only seem to beable to respond by knowingly or unkowningly hurting their lover back. It feels like what it must feel like to hug a brickaly pineapple, and then press it in further when its starts to bleed if meant to continue to attempt to express love.

  17. Thanks Andrew. There’s so much encouragement to rest…in Scripture and in conversations with Him. Again not sure if this connects with what you’re thinking…but I’ll share and you’re free to receive what “fits” (smile) For me the “push” to “count, measure and keep track” as you phrased it comes from a mistaken notion that the responsibility for His relationship with me is my work! It’s so freeing to begin to see that He will do the building. The tension comes when my most natural default position is to fall back into my working hard and even when I intellectually “know” this, I continue to work hard anyway. I think it’s sometimes like Peter on the water…he began to sink. At times I feel as though I’m “drowning”. When I ask for help, also asking Him to navigate me through losing the expectations of what His help will look like…He will reach out and “lift me up” the way He did with Peter. The painful tension is that b/c the bearing of real life-like fruit means the seeds have to go “deep”, germinate and take root…this process continues to take so much time (sigh) I’m learning to take joy in even the little encouragements where I see small areas of transformation. I’ll stop now…(I’m passionate about a topic that resonates so deeply) (smile). Thanks to everyone for sharing their walk and thoughts as we process together with Him.

  18. Sue: I love what you are sharing this message can not be shared enough for Me !! My resonating meter is going off the charts !!!!!! Thank you!

  19. Thanks so much Harvey!!! (smile) Your enthusiasm comes through in your writing (smile). I’m glad I “checked back in” before heading off to another meeting. Many blessings to you and thanks for your sharing encouragement with us. Blessings, Sue

  20. Sue, what you’re sharing very much “fits”. I’ve known for a long time about rest, and about the fact that God’s work in our lives is by grace, and not through our own effort. A couple of years ago, this clicked for me in a big way, and it was an incredible joy to see His grace for the first time. Ever since, I’ve been wrestling with the fact that despite “knowing” that He has the lead in our relationship (and so much more, but it’s hard to put into words), there’s still something in my nature that thinks & acts as if my own work can produce God’s fruit — and that’s what often what come’s through in day-to-day life (describing that struggle is also difficult to put into words).

    I got thinking yesterday, He is the real gardener, He is tending and watching over our gardens intently — and there is nothing He overlooks. It seems that something in my own heart/nature doesn’t get that yet, and tries to take on that responsibility myself!

  21. Hi Andrew…I love what you said about Him being the gardener. Wow…day to day living and learning to live out of His life…not our own efforts…yes that resonates deeply with me also. I can talk about it but yes something in my heart/nature also doesn’t quite “get it” yet. This work He does is deep, I’m glad He’s working deeper than surface manipulation of events would allow. Maybe in the pain of this struggle, encouragement comes from continuing to hold this before Him, follow His lead and watch as He unfolds His life in our lives.

  22. Just read all the comments and they were EXACTLY what I needed to hear! I’ve been feeling frustrated with myself lately. Like now that I understand God’s love for me and have found freedom from religion and all that that entails, I thought I should be feeling more loving, and that God would be placing more people in my life to love on. But after reading the comments and thinking about all that is going on in my life right now, I realize that I really wouldn’t!t be able to handle more than I have already. I have 12 children ranging from 33 yrs. old to 9. One daughter is in a 15 month long Teen Challenge program, and through family counseling we have found out that there has been some sexual abuse in the family involving some of our other children. There are several in our family whom I fear have alcohol abuse issues. My husband is a self-employed painter and we struggle to make ends meet. Our story is long and vey painful at times. If it wasn’t for Father’s unfailing love and his leading me to Wayne’s books and websites I don’t know where I’d be. I have one friend who is sharing this same journey of living loved, and she has just recently found that she has breast cancer. Her faith is truly an inspiration! So thank you everyone for your comments. They were like a healing balm to my aching heart!

  23. I have been meditating on this very topic lately, and I must say that you hit the nail on the head brother! I am in a situation where I have loved for so long a certain person, that quite frankly I am completely out of my resources. The other day is when I realized through conversation with Father that He has taken over with His unending resources, and now I just get to watch, ask and wait for my next move on how to love someone that seems as though they do not want to be loved. Not just by me, but by all! It is interesting to see Poppa’s peek out from him every now and then in a moment of his submission. All I can say is great podcast, and pray for both me and the brother I am referring to. Keep up the amazing work and hope I get to hang out with everyone one of these days. Blessings and peace :))

  24. Hi, Dawna

    I just saw your comment and really connected with it. I’m not sure you will see this comment I’m writing right now. Though, I’ll just do it anyway. 🙂

    I have a interesting perspective, I’ve been labelled angry, disrespectful, harsh, rude, and ungrateful by people that very much believe that their words and actions are loving towards me. Believers that speak of love and grace abundantly. I no longer communicate with them, I pulled away, I rejected their “love”.

    I wanted to share that loving another is never a waste of time, I too cringed when I saw the title of the podcast.

    If someone is pulling away, pushing back. There is always something more going on, it’s not as simple as loving someone and they will get all better. I believe that love wins, but we need to define what love means and looks like in relationships.

    If your interested in asking me more questions, here is my email Melkmeid@yahoo.ca

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