No matter what you have heard: God is not mad at you. God is not disappointed in you. Not a single little tiny bit! And I do not mean this “in spite of” your orientation or identity. After all, God created you the way you are.
I mean that God harbors no ill will or anger or even disappointment at you—because that is not how God works. That’s just not how any of this works.
There is a commercial about the woman who “puts all her friends’ photos on her wall” and she unfriends them by taking down the photo—it’s her physical wall! And the other woman says, “That’s not how this works. That’s not how any of this works!”
I’m here to tell you, this is not how any of this works!
I know the Bible seems to support some of that rash anger from God, and I know the fundamental, religious, rule-based, behavior-focused church has taught that for a long, long time. There’s a lot more to say about that, but that’s for another post, or maybe another book.
Trust me though—trust your very accurate gut—the codependent god-of-the-angry outburst is not the true God. We can see that in the humanity Jesus brings to God as Jesus lived on earth.
So how does it all work?
Very simply. God invites you into a personal relationship—a loving relationship… and then you walk through the rest of your life together, as you would with a real, trusted and beloved friend. God will guide you personally and individually because God knows the Wild Forest path very well—thank God for that!
God never intended for this to be some kind of endurance test of how perfectly you can perform, trying to get you from here to the end with as few mistakes as possible.
That concept of the mad God, disappointed God, sad God (notice how you never hear about happy God), has been passed down from ancient times, and it is a false view of God and reality.
Most box-christians do not understand this.
Also, let me tell you this: you are not responsible for Jesus’ wellbeing. You never have been, you never will be. If you have been told that, please, take a deep breath and hear my words. You are NOT responsible to ‘make Jesus happy.’ Really! Jesus is fully mature independent of you and me. Imagine such wholeness!
One of my pet peeves is when parents tell their kids that Jesus is angry with them. “You go make your bed or Jesus will be mad with you.” Really? Jesus’ emotional wellbeing turns on whether I make my bed? How could that be? Jesus speaks with God’s voice, and we’re in a codependent relationship? What kind of a setup is this?
I say to these parents: Don’t tie Jesus’ emotional wellbeing to your children. I’d hate for someone to die in a car wreck because Jesus was mad because I didn’t make my bed. You see where this goes? No. This, again, is spiritual abuse. Don’t pull down the ultimate authority to impose someone’s whim. Tell children to make the bed because that’s the way you like it—and you can like it that way, it’s your house. But don’t pin that stuff on Jesus.
The Bible itself shows us that Jesus gets angry at exactly one group of people… who it is? Religious leaders who use God as a weapon to oppress powerless people! That’s it. In fact, he gets hopping mad at them because they ongoingly abuse—spiritually and otherwise—people they are supposed to be caring for. (Have you ever seen that happen in real life?? Yeah, me too.)
Jesus gets positively vitriolic at those who abuse their power to hurt such people, without lifting a finger to help – church leaders who don’t try to help others up but instead shove them down.
Jesus has plenty to say to religious leaders who abuse their power this way. Even if it’s a glad handing pastor who says he’s kicking you out for the good of the church (what?), when in truth, he is maintaining his own power. He is not loving God and loving others. And he is not trusting God in the least.
But Jesus never gets angry at the person trying to make it through another day, trying to love as they have been loved, trying to live true to themselves. He overflows with compassion for the hurting person, for the one society has labeled “sinner” and rejected, for the regular person— you and me—trying to make our way and live well.
God is NOT mad at you, and never has been.