You can passionately and powerfully believe something that is completely false. False ideas do not always announce themselves as being counterfeit. If they did, we would be wiser.

Perhaps if each of our false assumptions was dressed as a wolf, baring its teeth, we’d identify it faster. Then, we’d run from assumptions that really hurt us. But they don’t and we don’t.

We embrace them, because we don’t know better.

This means you can cling to an assumption that really hurts you. What makes it worse is not only that you believe it, but that you begin to shore it up with evidence—sometimes a whole array of evidence—from your life. You unwittingly pile up examples to prove your false assumptions, until they seem to be a part of your outlook. They become burrowed into your soul as if they are reality.

Some false assumptions may have a minor affect on you, barely disturbing your wholeness. But some false assumptions are much more dangerous. It really matters if you assume a bridge across a ravine is secure, and you have misunderstood, not seeing that wooden slats have rotted through.

Here are five false assumptions that can severely mar your spirituality and relationship with God. Even if you don’t believe them overtly, you may believe them as silent assumptions that still influence your outlook.

1. If God loved me, my life would turn out better.

Two false ideas are at work in this assumption. The first is the most dangerous, which questions the very nature of God. As Elder Jeffrey R. Holland said, “The first great commandment of all eternity is to love God with all of our heart, might, mind, and strength…but the first great truth of all eternity is that God loves us with all of His heart, might, mind and strength.”

To assume that God’s love for us is on the line or that he must prove His love to us by blessing us according to our script is to misunderstand the very nature of our Father. He loves and blesses us because it is impossible for him to do otherwise. It is his nature and he has made it his mission to invest in us and create the perfect, customized circumstances for us to return into his presence.

God is perfect in every particular and does not change with time or circumstance. That means his love is perfect for you in every particular, and combined with his omniscience, justice, mercy, holiness, and every other divine attribute knows how to make all things work together for your good, if you love him.

If we will let him, he will save us.

C.S. Lewis wondered if, “What would really satisfy us would be a God who said of anything we happened to like doing, ‘What does it matter so long as they are contented?’ We want, in fact, not so much a Father in Heaven as a grandfather in heaven — a senile benevolence who, as they say, ‘liked to see young people enjoying themselves,’ and whose plan for the universe was simply that it might be truly said at the end of each day, ‘a good time was had by all.’”

We can be grateful that the Lord is not a senile, old benevolence, but the king of creation. If the only gift in all of eternity we ever received was the atonement, we could never give enough of our heart and praise to him.

We are forever the indebted—the blessed indebted.

So back to the pretty picture we have worked out for our lives. It is true that picture will be completely revised by reality. But that picture was based on a false assumption in the first place—that you knew what beauty really looked like and that a seamless road, a smooth path where everything worked just so, could create in you the wholeness God requires to return to the full joy of His presence.

We can’t make of ourselves or of our eternity the joyful, shining reality that God has in store for us. This means here and now, it hurts sometimes. It doesn’t mean that God has forgotten us.

2. I am only worthy of his love, if I turn in a perfect performance. God cannot accept me where I am.