The truth about whether God will give us more than we can handle

Posted: March 23, 2014 in Thoughts on God

imagesDon’t people always say “God will never give us more than we can handle” ? Yes, they certainly do. However, that is a worldly belief, not a biblical one.

There is nowhere in the Bible where God says He won’t give us more than we can handle.

The confusion most likely originates from 1 Corinthians 10:31 which says,No temptation has overtaken you but such as is common to man; and God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will provide the way of escape also, so that you will be able to endure it.” (NIV) But this verse mentions temptations, not burdens.

In this verse, Paul is saying that we will never be ‘tempted’ beyond what we can stand up against in God’s strength, not that we will never feel burdened beyond what we can handle.

In fact, the past few years I’ve wondered if God was giving me more than I could handle, and I’ve felt very burdened. I think all of us feel like that at times.  But with so many concerns pulling at my heart and so many different people and medical situations needing my attention, it’s been hard to wonder when I would break from all the loads I was carrying!  Not only because my time has been pressed, but my heart has been pressed as well.

But a few weeks ago, when thinking about why there seemed to be so many burdens to carry, I started noticing that I was getting more and more hungry for more and more of God. As if exerting so much energy carrying my burdens had made me hungry, hungry for God.

As a result, I’ve been waking up in the mornings, and the very first thing that keeps coming to mind is a desire to pray.  I can’t help but pick up my devotion book and read through it before I do anything else, because I want to see if God has a nugget for me that morning.  Maybe an answer to prayer or wisdom for the day. I’ve also been having a hard time turning off my Christian radio station, just in case God wants to speak to me through song.

All too often, we think we don’t have time for God, and we begin to rely on our own strength and wisdom to handle life’s problems, gradually creating a chasm between us and God, and eventually plummeting us into a desperate state of despair.  Instead of actively expecting God to step into our situations, we passively try to shoulder all the burdens, and eventually begin to feel weak and overwhelmed. We forget to seek God out in the big and the small situations.

We may even find ourselves questioning God about all that He is allowing us to endure, and wondering if just maybe He did give us more than we could handle. Friend, the truth is, He probably has. The old saying that says He won’t do that is merely a myth.

All throughout the Bible we read of regular people who were handed seemingly impossible burdens to bear but instead of trying to handle life on their own, they drew closer to God, fully relying on Him for direction and deliverance. We read in scripture of how God gave each individual more they could handle on their own and then filled them with strength and capability every step of the way.

Just like the characters in scripture, God longs for us to depend on Him when we are feeling overwhelmed with life and burdened by more than we can handle. He wants us to spend time with Him so we can be filled with what we need to get through each day.

In Matthew 19:26 Jesus said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”

When our load seems too heavy to carry, it might be that God is not only waiting for us to recognize that we can’t handle it on our own, but also hoping that our desperation will build our spiritual appetite so much so that we wake up starving every morning.

No matter what life hands us, just know that God will never give us more than HE can handle. We can’t do it all, but He can.

And that is a fact.

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