Episode 155: God is Not Mad at YouApr 21, 2022
Most of us don’t have the relationship we want with God because deep down, we believe he disapproves of us. That he’s disappointed in us.
I thought this for most of my life. I knew that it was such a privilege to come to earth to get a body, and that the things I did here on earth mattered eternally and they mattered to God. He had sent me to earth to learn and grow and he had given me so much, and I felt like maybe I had just squandered and wasted and made a mess of what God had given me. That there were so many ways that I had failed that I thought surely he must think so, too.
I mean, we are disappointed in ourselves, so it follows that God (who is way better than us and has higher standards than us)… surely he must be disappointed as well.
I want to teach you 4 things that I think will change this for you, and help you feel his love and approval of you. I think this knowledge and understanding will give you strength in challenging times, in good times, all the time.
You cannot disappoint God. God always knows how things are going to go. He is never surprised by things. He knows us and the lessons we need and all the ways we are going to learn them. He knows how many tries it’s going to take, how much practice we’re going to need, how we’re going to get it wrong. And He never has expectations that are different from reality, and so he can never be disappointed.
God’s feelings are created by His choices, not ours. God’s love and his approval is NEVER based on our choices. His love and approval are based on his choices.Every human being has agency, which means that we are beings that act - not beings that are acted upon.
Your curriculum does not indicate God’s disapproval. We each have a unique curriculum for our learning. Some of us get financial setbacks, some of us get health challenges, some of us have children that stray, some of us have spouses that make choices that aren’t what we want….and some of us have all of it. Not because God doesn’t love and approve of us, but because he does. And he knows exactly what we need.
God has a plan of practice, not perfection. We think that the plan is to choose the right. But it’s not. And it never was. You are supposed to do it wrong. Let me just put your mind at ease. Doing it wrong is the plan of God. God’s whole plan is about our education - about learning to choose like he does to develop the skill of choosing, until we can do it like he does. And that takes practice.
Hello Podcast Universe. Welcome to Episode 155 of the 100% Awesome Podcast. I'm April Price, and I am so excited to be here. I'm like, have a quick stop, between trips. I just got back from the life coach school mastermind and next week I am going on a vacation with my family. My husband has been planning this vacation for about three years. Luckily for maybe the pandemic, I think, but we've been waiting. He's been planning this trip, at least since my daughter went on her mission for this big family vacation where we're all going to be back together again. My son, Ethan, I can't remember if I've already said this. He got his mission call, he will be heading to Argentina in June. And so, my husband is like, this is it. This is the week we all have to get together and take this holiday together because it's going to be another couple of years before we're all together again. And so, here we are between travel weeks.
I'm so happy to be here and to share some thoughts with you today. I hope that things are good for you and I'm excited to just share a couple of thoughts today that I hope will be useful to you. A few weeks ago, I was invited to speak at a women's conference in Tucson, and the theme of the conference was about finding strength in challenging times, which I think in general is just a really useful topic, right? Because not only is this like a challenging season in the history of the world, but we all face challenging times throughout our lives, right? None of us are immune to that. We all are going to get curriculum and circumstances that challenge us and challenge our thoughts and create difficulty for us in our lives. And so, the woman who organized the conference asked each of the speakers to talk about something that they thought would help the women find strength in challenging times. And so, I picked the topic of really understanding God's approval of us, because for me, what provides the most strength in challenging times and in good times, I think the most strength in my life, period, is God and His grace.
The grace that he offers us, I think, is the biggest strength and biggest source of strength that any of us can have. But I find that for me, for a lot of my life, I was not accessing that strength because I thought God disapproved of me because like I thought he was disappointed in me. And I kept thinking like, I got to get my life together and then I can go to him for help, and strength, right? And I think this can happen to so many of us, right? That we want his help, that we need his help, that that we cannot do this on our own. And yet our thought that we are not good enough, that we have not proven ourselves worthy of his love, he's disappointed in some way, keeps us from accessing that strength. And so, you know, while God's love never changes, our thoughts about his love do and change throughout our life, depending on where we are and what we're the way we're living. And I thought it would be really valuable for you to be able to take in and look at your thoughts about what God thinks of you.
Does he approve of you? Does he disapprove of you and your life and the way you're living your life? Because I think the answer to that, like when we really think about what he thinks of us, it will show us. The reason we have the relationship we do with him most often it is our own judgment of ourselves and our own assumed disapproval that we think he has for us. That creates distance in the relationship with him. And so, if we don't have the relationship we want with God, it is often because we believe deep down He disapproves of us, that He is disappointed in us, and that like we've got to be better or different for that to change, and then, we can have a relationship.
And listen, we need his help way before we change our lives, right? So, the other day, I was driving home from Ethan's volleyball game, and I passed a church that had this big billboard out front with the little letters that you can put up and change and put a different saying up there. And as they passed this billboard in big black letters, it said, God is not mad at you. And I was like, oh, like that is was the theme of this talk. I went to those sisters in Tucson and I was just like, listen, if you don't get anything, what I want you to know is that God is not mad at you. And maybe you don't think he's mad. Maybe you don't think he's angry, right? But a lot of us suspect that he's at least a little disappointed, right? He's a little bit frustrated. He's a little bit disapproving. He sort of wishes we could be a little bit different, right? And then, in some way, he's kind of like shaking his head at us, right? Like, I can't believe you.
And I thought this for most of my life, right? Like, I knew it was such a privilege to come to Earth and to get a body and that the things that I did here mattered, right? He sent me to learn to choose, and I was terrible at it, right? And like, I was making a mess of it. And maybe he was just thinking like, she has squandered what I have given her. She has wasted her experience, she has made a mess and she knows better, right? And like in so many ways, I felt like I had failed. I was disappointed in me and I thought, well, surely he must be too, right? Because if we're disappointed in us, it follows that God, who is like way better and has higher standards and is like was way better at choosing than us, right? Like surely he must be disappointed as well, because for every one of us, let's be honest, there are things that we're supposed to be doing and we aren't. There are so many things that we know better and we don't, right? We don't choose those things. And so, we assume we make this, like, really painful assumption that God thinks about us the same way we think about us.
And nothing could be further from the truth. Like there has never been such good news that God's thoughts are not your thoughts. Like that's always been good news, but especially when it comes to you, especially when it comes to us. His thoughts are not our thoughts and thank heavens for that, right? So, I'm just going to talk about four things that I actually have talked about before. You've probably heard them from me in one way or another, but I just want to reiterate them. I think this is a message that we just can't hear enough. And I want to make sure that you know these things for sure.
So, the first thing that I want you to know is that, like, you cannot disappoint God. You cannot do it no matter what choice you make, you cannot disappoint God. And that is for a couple of reasons. The first is that disappointment is a feeling. Disappointment is a feeling in your body. And that feeling occurs to each of us when our expectation doesn't line up with reality. We feel disappointed when we think things are going to go one way and then they don't. We feel disappointed when we think our family's going to get to go on vacation and hope it happens and we don't, right? That creates disappointment. So, it's the discrepancy between what we think should be happening, the story about how it's supposed to go, and the actual reality of how it goes. But you all know that God is omniscient, meaning he knows everything.
He knows the beginning from the end, and he is never surprised at how things are going, right? He is never shocked by the way things are happening, by the way you are behaving, by the choices you are making because he knows everything from the beginning to the end. Past, present and future are always before him. When he introduces himself, he says, thus, saith the Lord, your God, even Jesus Christ, the great I am Alpha and Omega. The beginning and the end. The same, which know with all things for all things are present before my eyes. Everything is present before him. And nothing is coming as a surprise. So therefore disappointment isn't even an option. His perfect knowledge is never at odds with like some made up expectation of what he thought we were going to do, how it was supposed to go. It can never go differently than how he knew it would.
He knows us best and loves us most and is never disappointed by thinking that we should be different at a different place with different skills to choose than where we are. I was thinking about this in terms of Moses, because we've been studying about Moses recently and bringing the children of Israel out of Egypt. And, you know, when he gets that calling, the Lord is like asking him to go do this thing. And Moses is trying to tell the Lord, like, you don't have the full picture. Like, you've got the wrong guy and you're going to be disappointed. And he's like, first of all, I can't go back there, right? Like, no one's going to listen to me. They're not going to believe me. He has all these excuses and basically he's saying, like, don't send me to do a job that I can't do. You're going to be disappointed. I'm going to be disappointed. The children of Israel are going to be disappointed and laugh me out of their midst, right? And like this is not going to work.
And every argument that Moses makes the Lord is like, listen, I will go with you. It's going to be okay, right? Tell them this, show them this. And was just like, no. Like you got the wrong guy, right? Like finally the fourth time the Lord asked him to go. He's just like, listen, I can't even speak that well. I you know, I'm slow of tongue. I'm going to do a disappointing job. And I so relate to Moses, right? Like every one of us is kind of sitting in our lives in the same position. The Lord's like, Hey, I need you to be the mother to these children. And you're like, Listen, I'm going to be a disappointment. You are going to be shocked how bad a job I do at this. The Lord is like, I'm not disappointed. I know who you are. I know what you're capable of. I know what your children need. Just go, okay? And in so many ways, we are offering the same kind of line to the Lord when we think he's given us work to do here on Earth and that somehow we're not capable of it. And he's surely going to be disappointed in our ability to perform it and to do it. And he is not. He knows you best and loves you most And he knows the beginning from the end everything is present before him and he is not going to be disappointed in who and where you are.
The second thing that I want you to remember is that God's feelings are created by his choices and not yours. So again, let's go back to the premise that disappointment or disapproval, whatever feeling you think God has about you, like maybe you're all the way to anger, maybe you're just like slightly frustrated, right? Like, I don't know how you what you think he thinks of you or how he feels about you, but whatever that feeling is think about how we create our feelings. Our feelings never just happen to us, our feelings are choices. We have been given agency by God so that we can choose our experience no matter what happens, no matter what somebody else says, no matter what somebody else does, no matter what happens in our life or in the world, we get to choose what we're going to think about that. And that creates our feelings. We are agents that get to act, nothing outside of us can create a feeling inside of us.
And here's the thing, if we are agents who can choose, then surely God is an agent who can choose. There's no way that we can create a feeling in God, because then we would be more powerful than Him. We would have more control over him than he has over himself. And that is impossible. So every single one of us gets to choose this, to choose how we feel, because we are beings that act. And this is true when it comes to God as well.
You have agency and God does too. He gave you your agency, your ability to act because he has his own agency and because he gets to choose his own power to choose and act. And he has the agency to choose his experience. So I want to read you a quote by David Bednar, who said, Ultimately, it is impossible for another person to offend you or to offend me. To be offended is a choice we make endowed with agency. You and I are agents and we primarily are to act and not just be acted upon. To believe that someone or something can make us feel offended, angry, hurt or bitter. And I would add disappointed, diminishes our moral agency and transforms us into objects to be acted upon. For sure. God is not an object that is acted upon. And we can not make him feel offended or angry or hurt or disappointed.
We can't even make him feel happy. We can't even make him feel proud. Let that sink in. So, many of us think like if we behave in a certain way and we make certain choices and we live our lives a certain way, then God will be pleased and happy as if we created that for Him. But we never do. God creates his own feelings because He is choosing His feelings. And I want you to think about who he is. The reason that he is God is because He is the perfect chooser. He always chooses the right thing. And I believe he's always choosing love. And the reason that I believe that is because that is what he has commanded us to do. He would not command us to do something that he is not actively doing himself. He is perfect at choosing. He is perfect at using his agency. And he uses his agency to choose love for us, no matter what our choice is. I want you to understand that we act here, we make choices, we take action, and then God makes a choice.
And his choice about how he feels is 100% independent of our choice. How he feels is determined by what he thinks of us, by what he's deciding to choose to believe. I believe he always chooses love. He always chooses compassion. He always chooses grace. He never chooses condemnation, right? That's what Christ said. Neither do I. Condemn the. So many of us are busy condemning ourselves and thinking God is making the same choice.
I promise God is better at choosing than you are. And He is choosing love. And when you really know that, when you really know that your actions, whatever they are, do not create or destroy his love, then you can drop your shame and your assumptions about what he thinks and you can connect with his love. And knowing that, knowing that he is there, loving you, approving you, understanding exactly where you are, that will improve your relationship with him in every way.
I love the way that Paul describes this right in Romans, he says. For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor powers, nor things present, nor things to come. Not the things you have done. Not the things you're going to do, nor height, nor depth, nor any other creature, including you, shall be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus, our Lord. Nothing can separate you from His love because He is creating it with His choices, and that is an incredible thought.
The third thing that I want you to know is that your personal curriculum is not an indication of God's approval or disapproval. So, I think this is something like we know intellectually, but it's like so easy to forget when we experienced challenging time, when bad things happen to us, when our personal circumstances present challenges to us, when bad things happen, quote unquote. Of course, that's just an interpretation, but let's just leave that for now. When those things happen, it's really easy to believe that is a result of God's disapproval somehow, right? Or if it's not his disapproval, like he didn't directly cause it, at least he didn't prevent it, right? Because he's sort of disappointed in us. And so, like he can't give us all of the blessings and so therefore we're going to experience this challenging time.
And it's kind of like in the Scriptures, right? When the apostles and Christ come across the blind man and the apostles are like, okay, who sinned? This man is blind, was it him or was his parents right? And Christ is like me, they're right. This man is blind. The works of God may be manifest in him. And I really think like it's so easy as humans to associate, struggle with wickedness or like that we've done something wrong or that we've like incited the disapproval of God. And the way that I like to think about this is that every single one of us has been given a personal curriculum, lessons that are just designed for us, things that we came to learn, experiences, people in our lives.
Health, finances, marriages is like the things that happen and the things we choose are there to teach us. They are our curriculum, and that personal curriculum is designed by God personally for you, for your particular growth, for the things that you need. Christ said that the man was blind so that the works of God may be manifest. I want you to think about that line. The works of God.
What is the work of God? The work of God is to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man. He has already taken care of the immortality part. He sent our Savior who made it possible for us to live again. There is a resurrection, and then we will all achieve immortality. And what we are working on here is eternal life. Which means a life like God lives. Which means a life like God lives. And in order to live a life like God lives, we have to have the skills.
To do that, we have to be like him. We have to be as good of choosers as he is. Right. And to that end, to help us become better choosers, we have been given a very specific curriculum in which we came to learn to choose, in which we came to learn to choose love when which we came, to learn to choose faith. And whatever challenges we have been given are the lessons we need to learn to choose more like he does. We don't have our curriculum because, like, he's withholding his love or he doesn't approve of us.
It's because he does approve of us and he knows what we need in order to progress and grow. And I think so many times, like we each have a very individual curriculum, a very individual class schedule, right? And we're looking at our class schedule and we're saying, okay, I got a class in like financial setbacks and I've got a class in health challenges and I've got a class and children going astray. And then we compare it to our neighbor and their class is looks like an easier class schedule and we think like something has gone wrong. I have the wrong schedule.
Maybe God likes them better than me. Maybe God is mad at me. And I just want you to know that whatever your curriculum is, it does not ever indicate God's approval or disapproval. His curriculum always indicates his approval, always indicates that he believes we are capable of choosing even here, and he's given us the chance to practice it and we don't even have to get it right. It's like I've given you this curriculum, and I don't expect you to know everything on day one.
I expect you to, like, work at that curriculum. Work and fail and work and fail. And I will go with you and all of it will help you learn the lessons that you came to Earth to learn. The last thing that I want to say about God's love and approval for you is I want you to remember that God is a plan of practice and not perfection.
And maybe it's it would be better said, like it's a plan of practice until we are perfected in Christ. Okay. But so many of us think like I'm supposed to be doing this, right? Everything. The plan. I've told you this before. We think the plan is choose the right and it never was. And we think when we don't get it right, when we get this curriculum and then we make a mess of it and we fail test and we just can't, like, seem to choose love and seem to choose faith. And and we keep struggling with that. We think that he is disappointed and he never is.
His whole plan is a plan of practice. And he's like, let's try that one more time. To learn, to choose like he does. You've got to practice and you've got to have plenty of chances to choose wrong. Have to be able to choose wrong a lot. And we are here to practice choosing until we have the ability and the skill. And we've practiced enough to be able to exercise our agency and and choose love like he does. We are here to learn and to practice, and you get to practice as much as you need.
That is the plan. Choose and choose and choose wrong until you practice enough to choose right. And God is never disappointed when we're doing it wrong. He's never like, Well, that did not go according to plan. In fact, he said This is the foundation of the plan, right? Like in the Grand Councils of Heaven, he said the foundation of it all is that I will provide a savior. King Benjamin said. If you have come to a knowledge of the goodness of God and his matchless power and his wisdom and his patience and his long suffering towards the children of men, and also the atonement which has been prepared from the foundation of the world that thereby salvation might come to him that puts His trust in the Lord.
The plan of choosing wrong was prepared from the foundation of the world. I want you to remember that the laws and commandments exist outside of God, right? He is God because he lives so perfectly within those laws. He chooses and exercises his agency so perfectly within those laws that He is God. But He has to practice to be able to do that, to attain the skills to live within those laws and to make those choices.
And that is what we are here to learn to do. And I know that some of you might be saying, but like April, God wants me to obey. He tells me all the time to obey. And I agree. But I think he wants us to learn to obey for us because we get more skills and we get more power and we get more joy. It's not for him. It does not make his life better. It doesn't change his feelings about us. It doesn't make us easier to love. Right. When we obey, we grow.
We get stronger. We get more skills. We get better at choosing. And we we feel more love when we do that. And that is why he's giving us this experience in the first place to learn those skills. He is so devoted to your growth and development and your education, but he doesn't need us to obey so that he won't be upset or so that he won't be disappointed. He wants us to obey. For us to acquire the skills to aid in our becoming. To live a life like he does.
I love knowing that God never makes our choices and our decisions mean anything about him and his plan or our internal safety or our potential, because he knows that we just need the practice and he knows that our choices are not about him, they are about us and where we are in our own progression, in our own skills. And it's not that he doesn't have a standard for righteousness or a standard for sin, it's just that he doesn't have a deadline.
And so many of us think that we've already passed the deadline, and I promise you, you haven't. It is a plan of practice, and wherever you are in that plan is perfect. I think it's so important to understand God's infinite love and constant approval for you exactly where you are. Because I think when we believe that God is mad at us or disappointed in us, not only is it painful for us, but more importantly, we distance ourselves from the help that we all need.
The thought that he's disappointed makes us avoid him and fear him and shame ourselves. And that diminishes the strength that is available to each of us when we go to him and when we access his grace. God is not disappointed in you. He is in love with you. And wherever you are. He does not disapprove of that. He knows that you are always using your agency with the exact capacity you have to use it.
And because he loves you, he has given you unlimited chances to keep practicing. And that, my friends, is 100% awesome. I love you for listening and I'll see you next week. Thanks so much for joining me on the podcast today. If you want to take the things I've talked about and apply them in your life so that you can love your Earth life experience. Sign up for a free coaching session at April Price Coaching Icon.
This is where the real magic happens and your life starts to change forever. As your coach, I'll show you that believing your life is 100% awesome is totally available to every one of us. The way things are is not the way things have to stay. And that, my friends is 100% awesome.
See What Coaching Can Do For You!
Sign up for a free consultation to see if coaching can make a difference in your life. It only takes a few minutes to change everything.
For more help and inspiration, sign up to get a shot of awesome delivered to your inbox every week!
We hate SPAM. We will never sell your information, for any reason.