Meeting God on the Mountain: Spiritual lessons from 29029Oct 20, 2022
The lessons I got from completing the 29029 ultra-endurance event just keep coming. In this final episode about my experience I talk about meeting God on the mountain and the spiritual lessons I learned.
On that mountain I came to know more about me, God and my relationship with him than ever before.
Whatever challenges you are facing, you are not alone in them, and the suffering and pain you experience can create a portal through which you can better understand God’s deep and enduring love for you.
I hope the thoughts I share here will bless your life as well.
Creation is a gift.
Both my experience of creation and my right and capacity to create things myself are gifts.
Being on Whistler Mountain felt sacred to me. I felt like I was a part of creation.
One of my very favorite parts of the whole hike was in a section of ancient forest. I imagined all the people who had walked those sacred trails before me and that had built a life on that mountain.
And my thoughts also went to my creators, imagining the effort and care that went into creation.
I know that mountain was not just created for me, but in a way this entire earth was created for each one of us so that we could come here and so that we could have this experience.
It’s so humbling to think about the magnitude of the effort and the energy and creative ability and dedication to beauty that was all done on your behalf. No detail was overlooked.
And during some of the most difficult moments on the mountain, I had to just appreciate the magnitude of it. I kept thinking about how I am here, right now on this planet, and this mountain is here, right here on this planet. And we are having an experience together.
It felt like a sacred shared experience that we were having together - this living, breathing mountain and me as a living, breathing human. I felt so connected to all of it and to my creators.
The chance to be here and choose your experiences while you are here is a gift.
You get to choose many of your experiences in this life.
Don’t settle. Don’t just ride it out. Don’t sell yourself short.
Place yourself outside your comfort zone. Go all in.
The mountain allowed me to reflect on what it means to be truly alive…not just numb and surviving, but fully present and alive in my life and intentionally making the choices that I need to make to have the experiences I want to have.
Love is all that matters and love never fails.
I think I learned more about love than anything else during this event. Unexpected, but true.
I thought I would be learning about toughness or endurance or grit or strength…and I learned these things, too.
But I also felt so much love. It shocked me.
I learned that I want to do everything in my life with more love. And it made me think about you, this podcast, my clients, my business….I decided that it would be one of my core business values.
I also learned that other people’s love makes suffering better.
And I felt so much love for me – for past me, for future me, for present me.
Suffering is a sacred portal to know God.
The second day of the event was just one long prayer. Please help me. Please help me.
I was not enough but I was not alone, and when you ask for help, help is given.
We must be acquainted with suffering in order to truly appreciate his incomparable gift.
The struggle is sacred.
You are going to suffer. And it isn’t a problem. It is a gift. It is the way we are acquainted with God, with his love, with his succor, with the depth of his suffering.
I know that many of you are suffering in much more exquisite ways than I did on this mountain, and I want you to know that it's not for nothing. And that you are not alone in it. And in your suffering I hope you find a more personal and real understanding of his deep true love and what it cost him to provide that love to you.
- How to find strength in your struggle
- The power of choice and what it means to truly live
- The surprising ways love shows up in challenging times
Welcome to the 100% Awesome podcast with April Price. You might not know it, but every result in your life is 100% because of the thought you think. And that, my friends, is 100% awesome.
Hello Podcast Universe. Welcome to episode 181 of the 100% Awesome Podcast. I'm April Price and here I am and I am still talking about the mountain. I am still talking about my experiences with 29)29 And I promise you that at some point in the very near future I am going to move on and I'm going to talk about something else. But the lessons from this experience just keep coming for me. 29)29 is a challenge that just keeps giving and just keeps like showing me things about myself, about my life, about my brain, and like what I have received from this event just goes way beyond the actual event, the actual accomplishment, because the realizations and the insights and the lessons just keep coming. So, if you can hang with me one more week, I want to share just a few more lessons that that I got by doing this event. I am so grateful for the things that I have learned, and I'm so grateful that I gave myself the chance to learn them and so grateful that I had the experience that I did so that I could learn the things that I've learned.
So, you know, that that really is the point of life, right? To learn what we can while we are here. And I want to just encourage you one more time to really put yourself in situations, in to experiences where you can just have more chances to learn and grow, like we're so scared of failing. But all there is like all there ever is for us are learning experiences. So, get outside of your comfort zone so that you can learn some things about yourself, learn some things about your brain.
And I promise you, like, these are the greatest gifts of your life. They are the greatest things that you will do for yourself to really take those opportunities to learn and grow and like our opportunities to learn and grow are sometimes provided by the circumstances of our lives, like the things that we don't choose. And sometimes we we have opportunities to choose those experiences, and sometimes we put ourselves in extraordinary situations, as Jesse says. And when we do that, we put ourselves in a position where we can learn and grow.
And so, if you can stand it, I am going to share one more episode about the things that I've learned, and this episode is especially near and dear to my heart because of all the things that I learned in the 29029 experience. These lessons that I learned kind of on a spiritual level are the most sacred and profound to me. You know, maybe it sounds a little strange to talk about spiritual things after, like such a physical endurance event. And even like for me after the event, I was kind of talking to my coach and telling him about the things that I learned about myself.
And I said, You know, I really feel like I learned a lot about God as well and about my relationship with him. And at the time, like I was telling him about this, I felt like maybe that was a little weird, right? Like, maybe that's not like a very common experience. But he said, actually, April, there is a quote in endurance circles that says, if you want to run, run a mile, if you want to experience a different life, run a marathon, and if you want to talk to God, run an ultra. And I really did feel like that, like I wasn't running, but I felt like this endurance event really allowed me to talk to God. Like I went up on that mountain and I talked to him and I had him talk back to me. And the deeper that I got into the event, the more I learned and the more we had to say to each other. So, I felt like it was like really an amazing opportunity to have a conversation with God and to to understand him a little bit better, to understand his love for me so much better and to deepen that relationship with him.
So, I wanted to share some of my thoughts and lessons from the spiritual part of the experience as well. So, I hope that these thoughts will bless your life as well, like because we are all here, right? We are here on Earth, separated from God, strangers in a strange land right away at school, as it were. And when we have these moments of connection with the divine, like they can give us so much courage and hope and strength and encouragement to keep going here in this temporal world and to remember that we are never truly alone while we are here in this veil of tears, and that we do not walk this path alone.
We do not face difficulty, we do not face suffering alone. And so, I wanted to just share my experience and some of the. Things that I learned and relearned on a much deeper level by participating in 29029. Okay, so here we go. These are the sort of sacred lessons that I learned on the mountain.
And the first one is that creation is such an amazing gift. So for me, one of the biggest reasons that I even considered and even thought about doing this event in the first place was because of the location. My brother, he was like, You know what? They're doing it on Whistler Mountain in British Columbia. And this has always been a really special spot for me and for David, for our family. We love British Columbia. We have spent many, like memorable, amazing summers in British Columbia. And so from the very beginning, just the location itself was a huge draw. And I just cannot tell you enough, like the stunning beauty of the mountain, the the mountain itself, the clouds. We were walking through the mist. We were walking through the clouds, just the incredible trees and beauty around us. I felt so much like I was just like a part of something bigger than me. And I had read this quote that talked about how, like when we swear and when we are like, out on the mountain, when we swear and when we cry, those tears eventually like, reach the ocean below us. Like Whistler Mountain is very close to the Pacific Ocean.
And like as I was climbing, I just felt a part of all of it, right? I felt like all my sweat and all my tears were going to end up in that ocean. And and that, like, the ground underneath me was so sacred. And the scenery, like, really did lift me sometimes when, like, nothing else. Good, right? Some of the hardest parts of the trail for me were kind of in this like open area when you pass through the through the forest and and went up to that like another part of the mountain.
But there were like the leaves were changing right in front of us and like it felt like a scent to a scent. The colors were changing and that by the end of the event, like there were so many more vibrant colors than there were when we when I started, it just felt like I was a part of creation and it felt so sacred to me. One of my very favorite parts of the whole hike was between Aid Station one and two, and you entered this ancient forest. There was even a sign that just said, Welcome to the ancient forest.
And as I walked through there, it just felt so sacred to me. The ground in there was like the kind of soft and spongy because of just the, like, thousands of trees that had, like, been born and lived and died in that forest. And I could just like, feel them under my feet. And every time I went through that part of the forest with just these gorgeous huge cedars and moss covering everything and ferns and just this beautiful rainforest, I just like one imagined all the people who had walked through there before me, right? All of the first people who had walked through there with babies strapped to their chest. And that built a life on that mountain. And it like, walked those sacred trails before me. And also just like my thoughts went to my creators and like, imagining. Like the effort and care that went into creation. And just thinking about like as they created that mountain was in their mind that that one day they knew that I would come to that mountain, test myself on it.
And they created all of that beauty and all of that wonder and all that strength for me so that I could have an experience here on Earth. And yes, like I know that mountain was not just created for me, but in a way it was and for each of us that this entire earth in a way was created for each one of us so that we could come here and so that we could have this experience. And like when you think about the magnitude of the effort and the energy and the like, creative ability and like the dedication to beauty, that was all like, done on your behalf.
Like, it was so humbling to think about. And there's just so much to see and experience and witness while you're here. And all of that was created for you so that you could come, so that you could come and learn and grow and like no expense was spared, right? That's what I kept thinking as I walked to that force and saw the beauty. I was just like, no detail was overlooked, no expense was spared that I could see this, that I could experience this. And I just felt so, like, humbled by it. And there were moments on the mountain where especially when it was really hard, like I just tried to, like, appreciate the the, the steepness of the mountain and just the magnitude of it, right? And I kept thinking about how I am here right now on this planet. And this mountain is here, right here on this planet. And together we are having an experience together. And the fact that this mountain exists is like providing such incredible, like experiences for me.
And like, I just kept thinking, like, while we are both here on earth, while you are here, mountain, and while I am here, like, I'm going to make sure that I get the most out of it. And it just felt like this sacred, shared experience that we were having together, this living, breathing mountain in me as a living, breathing human. And I just felt so connected to all of it and to my creators. So in addition to that kind of creation, the other creation that that I, I think is such a gift is our own agency.
And I kept thinking about that on the mount and that like, what have I created by choosing this experience? What have I created by choosing to train for it, by choosing to work for it, by choosing to put myself out there and say, Yeah, I want to try that. And I just think like we have all been given an incredible gift to create our own lives, to create our experiences, to create like the things that we are going to feel and and do while we are here. And like, sometimes I'm just amazed by that, that God trusts us that much with that much agency, with that much ability to choose with that much sovereignty over our own lives when we're like, so bad at it and we're such a mess at it and we just are all just practicing it. I was just again stunned by like the creative ability each one of us has to design and determine our lives to design and determine our destinies. I was on that mountain because I got to choose to be there and like, I'm just in so much awe and so much wonder that we each have that much creative, constructive ability in our own lives, such a gift.
And so that kind of leads me to the second thought that has been really powerful to me, and that is just to, like, make the most of this Earth life experience and to pour my soul into it. Okay, keep thinking about that phrase. Pour your soul into it like. Put yourself in uncomfortable, challenging situations and then pour your whole soul into it. Your life, your time here is so precious and you have the capacity to choose anything you want while you're here. So don't settle. Don't just write it out. Don't sell yourself short. Like this is your chance. Pour your soul into it. Like I kept thinking about like, oh my goodness, like, it's such a gift to be alive and not just alive, not just surviving, but but like, alive and choosing intentionally, alive and present alive in my life and and intentionally choosing the choices that I want to make and have the experiences that I want to have.
And I kept thinking like like even in the moments of extreme pain, I was like, This is what it means to be alive. Like, I maybe, you know, it reminded me of the birth experience. Like, you never feel so fully alive is when you're like giving birth. And in so many ways, it reminded me of that on the mountain. And I had this experience a few days ago last week. So, I've been going to physical therapy for my shoulder ever since 29029. I told you my legs were fine. Like my aerobic capacity was amazing. Like I was really strong and I did really well. But like, the thing that I really hurt was my shoulder. And so I was on my way to physical therapy the other day. And as I went, you kind of passed this like vacant spot where it's just the deserts, but it's like undeveloped land and the desert is just there. And I had this flashback where I remembered five or six years ago driving Ethan to school, and I was having a lot of back pain then. And I remember I had to pull off at that little space in the desert and I had to get out of the car and lay in the dirt and just like lay on the ground there because I was in so much pain, I couldn't drive my car. I was having like sciatic pain. And just sitting in the car was just absolutely excruciating and said to pull over there in the desert and lay on the ground and call a friend to come and take him to school.
And as I drove past that, I was just, like, stunned with, like. But the change in my life and the trajectory of my life and that like, I was just like, oh my goodness, Like, I'm so glad I didn't settle. I'm so glad I didn't decide. Like, well, this is the best I can hope for. And I'll just like, numb myself out and and make make the best of a really bad situation. And I'm so glad that I learned that I could choose something else and that I was going to have in order to change my life. I was going to have to change the way I thought and I was going to have to be intentional about it. And that one at a time, one thought at a time. I have done that. I have changed my life. Like I was on that moment, fully alive, fully present in pain, but walking, climbing all the way to 29,000 feet. And if that girl laying in the dirt in the desert could have seen that. She just would have like, not believed it, first of all. But second of all, just like it would have been, like, miraculous to her. And I just want you to know that your life. Being alive is a miracle. And if you want to, like, get more out of it, like pour your whole soul into it. Change the trajectory of your life.
It is possible. It is available. It is not reserved for the special or the talented or the strong. It's available to every one of us. And that is such a gift. It's it's a sacred responsibility to make the most of your life. And and it is a gift. And I just want to encourage you to go all in wherever you are. You just start with one thought, wherever you are, if you're in the dirt or you're already on the top of the mountain. Like, you are not limited. It all starts in the chambers of your mind. And yeah, our chance to choose and change is just such an incredible gift.
Okay, the next lesson that I want to talk about is that love is all that matters, and love never fails. So, I never would have thought that this would be the case, but I feel like I learned more about love than anything else in this event, which, like I did not anticipate that, right? Like I thought I was going to be learning about toughness and endurance and like grit and strength and preparation and like, like all of which, I did learn things for sure. But I think what most surprised me was just the amount of love I felt and and what I learned. Like, the most powerful lessons I learned were about love. And that just shocked me. It just surprised me. And so I just want to give you a few of the things that I learned about love first, like I learned that I want to do everything in my life with love. The people that run this event that ministered to me during this event that took care of me, that encouraged me.
They loved me so much. It made me want to love better. I've already told you about like that moment on the seventh century when one of the coaches, her name is Dawn, you know, she stopped me and she just looked deep into my eyes. She did not want just a pat answer, like, how you doing? She did not want me to be like, you know, thumbs up. I'm doing great. She just looked so deeply in my eyes and said, How are you? And I felt so much love in moment. I just broke down. I just sobbed because I was in pain. But I knew she could see me. I knew she could see me in my pain. And I knew she cared about me. I knew she loved me. I knew she believed in me. And she was a stranger before the day on that mountain. And I thought, if a stranger can love me this much, I can love better. Like everybody that I interacted there with, like I could feel their love. They wanted what was best for me. They wanted, you know, me too, to change my own life. They wanted to make an impact. They wanted me to change my own world through this experience and through love.
And I felt I felt so deeply that love it. And it changed me. It made me think about everybody I interact with differently. It made me think about you out there in the podcast differently. How can I love you better? How can I serve you better? How can you feel my love? It made me think about my clients differently, how deeply I love them, how intently I look at them. And I convey my love through. Through my eyes. Through. Through the way that I, I speak to them and interact with them, change my business. I kept thinking like, this has to be a core value in my business from now on. Love has to be the the the bottom line has to be the core of everything, because if it is worth doing, it is worth doing was love.
I also the other lesson, another lesson that I learned about love is that, like other people's love makes suffering better. And I know that feels really obvious, but I mean, like it makes it a lot better and doesn't just like, make it a little better or make it better, but like, it is everything when you are suffering somebody else's love and care, it like there isn't. Just like there's just no substitute for it. There's nothing better than that. And I felt like on that mountain I again, I have never felt so loved and I have never felt like I needed it so much, right? So just to give you a couple of examples, like first of all, Caleb, he's the one that hiked with me and like, honestly, like, I probably like we helped each other for sure. There were moments where I lifted him in moments where he lifted me, but in general, like he was stronger and faster than me. And he could have gone on and and honestly, for the first couple of us since I felt really bad, I felt like I was holding him back and letting him down. And I really tried. I really said, Caleb, just go without me. I don't want to hold you back. Don't go without me. And he just said. I'm not doing that. Stop asking because I'm not doing it. I'm not leaving you.
And he didn't. And I know that if if he had gone ahead and I had done it alone, you know, I would not have quit. I would have kept going. I you know, maybe I would have been been successful. But it was so much better to have a shared experience. It was so much better to be able to see him ahead of me or to to feel him behind me when I was leading and to know that, like we were doing it together. Like it it made such an incredible difference in my whole experience. And I'm so grateful for his love. I told you already about the care that David and my parents gave me and Caleb. They were just constantly like serving us and and taking care of our gear and encouraging us and feeding us and drying us and like making sure that we were warm when we were at the top. And, and, and then we had what we needed and like, carrying our poles and just helping us in every way. What do you need? What do you need? Towards the top. They waited out at the summit, at the top for us, at every ascent and at the top there, you know, you're you're kind of in the forest. And there's a point at the top where you come out of the trees and make your final climb to the top. It's about, you know, a quarter of a kilometer from from that tree line.
And they would just watch that tree line for hours, so that they could be there right when we came to the top so that they could be there cheering us. They never missed a single cent. And they would watch that tree line. Caleb had these orange shoes, thank heavens he had these orange shoes, and they would just watch for those orange shoes for hours watching that tree line. So that they could be there, and not miss it. It make it easier? And it just reminded me of the part in the Scriptures where, you know, Christ is suffering. And God sent an angel to come for him. Like, the angel couldn't bear the burden. Michael couldn't bear that burden. He couldn't take it from Christ, but he could comfort him. And that's. That's how I felt. I felt like David. My parents, they were angels. Just comforting where they could. They couldn't do the climb. I couldn't, like, you know, take away the steepness or the incline or change that in any way. But they could comfort us and they did.
You know, for me, I just felt like I never loved David more. Like, I just was so overwhelmed with love. And again, like I said this before, it really reminded me of the feelings that I had after having my children, right? It's that like, like overwhelming feeling of love and connection and, like, I was just so, so in love with him, the way that he cared for me. And like, if you've seen the pictures of his face at the end, like when I read the end of that red carpet and I'm finally finished and I just fall in his arms, like his face is just the picture of joy. Like he was happier than I was. I've never seen anyone so happy as he was when he embraced me. It was just sheer joy on his face. And I felt, again, just so humbled by that kind of love and support. Finally, like the last thing that I wanted to say about learning about love was really love for myself. Like I had so much love for the me that I had put in the training.
I had so much love for the me that was there suffering and doing the work so that I could, you know, experience the triumph at the end. And I had so much love for for future me, for the one that wore the red hat, for the one that was like, you know, that that achieved it. And I just really felt like this experience changed my relationship with myself forever. It's hard to put into words how much love and appreciation and gratitude I had for myself and and how it felt to really be able to count on myself and to, like, know that I had done everything. And beyond that, I had required of myself. And yeah, just like I felt like I kind of fell in love with me to.
Okay, and the last thing that I want to talk about, the last lesson is just the love of God that I felt. And I really learned that suffering is a sacred portal by which we come to know that love. I really think that the more we know about suffering, the more we know about God's true love of us. And I will always count this experience as sacred there. So first, the love of God provides a sustaining and enabling power in our lives. Like there were so many moments that I was not enough, that my training was not enough, that my strength and and my energy and what I had to bring was not enough. But I was not alone. And I found that, like, when I asked for help, help was given. Like when I woke up on that second day I'd been sick all night and I still felt, like, terrible. I felt like it was hard to breathe. I felt like. Like, you know, I was ready to throw up at any moment. And I was just like, But it's non-negotiable. I am going up that mountain and I need help. As they would for a blessing, I was like, I'm going and I need help. And that day was just like one long prayer. My God said, like, what did you pray? And I said, I just prayed. Please help me. Please help me. It was just one long prayer of help.
And I know that, like, the challenge didn't change this and didn't change, like. I felt God's love in that and it was enough to sustain me and keep me going. And then, you know, all the way up on a Sensex is just really, really difficult. And I've told you about like the dread and anguish that I felt on the way back down after that ascent. Like that one. I just felt like just cracked me open. Like I just. Was suffering so much I just felt just so exposed and just like, whittled down to like, my essence to my core. Like this is what I've got left, right. And I had this scripture come into my mind from the Doctrine and Covenants, where Christ is describing his experience in the Garden of Gethsemane. He's describing his sacrifice. And he says how saw you know not how exquisite you know, not yet how hard to bear you know not. For Behold, I, God have suffered these things for all that they might not suffer which suffering caused myself even God the greatest of all to tremble because of pain. And I was like, I felt that trembling on my way down that mountain, like my teeth were chattering so hard and the exertion was just causing me to shake and tremble. And the dread and the despair was so high in my throat and just felt like I was going to just like, yeah, like choke on the English, right? And I just could remember those words like, caused me God to tremble.
And I knew that he had had a moment, right, He says, tremble because of pain and bleed in every pore and suffer both body and spirit. And would that I might not drink the bitter cup and shrink. Nevertheless. Never the less. In that moment of anguish, moment despair, that moment of trembling, he says. Nevertheless, glory be to the father. And I took and finished my preparations and the children of and. And I hope that is not too sacrilegious to say that in those moments, like I had like it just like opened that experience up to me in a new way. The thing that he had experienced, what it cost him. What that trembling was really like, what that anguish was really like. What? Like it means to suffer in body and spirit. Like, just, like, open, like a space where I knew, at least in the tiniest way what that was like for him. And it made me love him so deeply. My own small suffering made me love and respect and admire and worship him even better. And, you know, I just had that moment where I could just those words just like, ring in my soul.
How hard, you know, not how exquisite, you know, not nevertheless, right? And that those words gave me so much strength as I descended that mountain. I was like, nevertheless, nevertheless, there is nothing now but to continue. This is the part where we are brave. It's time to finish all the preparations that we have made. I had done so much. I had fought so hard, I had trained so long, I had prepared for so many months, and I didn't want it to be for nothing. So nevertheless. And I just decided. And it was just like. Oh, I see. Like, you can feel so much dread and despair and anguish and you just keep going. Never the less right and just have a glimpse of what it really cost him, how much resistance was really there, how much suffering we know not right, how much agony we know not. And yet he kept going. He kept going because of love. Like he loves you that deeply. And maybe like I loved him better in that moment than I ever had before.
Like we must be acquainted with suffering in order to truly appreciate the incomparable gift he extends to each of us. And that struggle, that suffering, is sacred. And I never want to change it. I never want to forget it. I don't I would never want it to be different than it was. So as you suffer, I want you to remember that like you are here on Earth, you are going to suffer. And it isn't a problem. It's a gift. It's a portal to understand how loved you truly are. It's the way you become acquainted with him personally, with his love, with his succour, with the depth of his suffering, and the love that's even deeper than that, that he would do it. Now, I know that many of you are suffering in much more exquisite ways than I did on this mountain. And I want you to know that it's not for nothing. That you're not alone in this. And if you are in a place. Where you are hurting and like it's never been so sword's never been so exquisite. It's never been so hard to bear. There is one who knows and understands. And in your suffering, you will be acquainted with him.
And I hope that, as you like, experience those pains and sufferings that you will find a more personal and real understanding of God's deep, true unfailing love and what it cost him to provide it to us. There are mountains. There are deep waters. They are real. But so is the truth that you are capable of climbing them. You are capable of swimming them, and you are never alone in it. And the suffering that you do, we become sacred to you as it makes you fast and familiar friends with God. And that is a gift. It is a gift. And that, my friend, 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 Aprilpricecoaching.com. 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!
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