“We think you ought to know, dear brothers and sisters,about the trouble we went through in the province of Asia. We were crushed and overwhelmed beyond our ability to endure, and we thought we would never live through it. In fact, we expected to die. But as a result, we stopped relying on ourselves and learned to rely only on God, who raises the dead. And he did rescue us from mortal danger, and he will rescue us again. We have placed our confidence in him, and he will continue to rescue us” (2 Corinthians 2:8-10, NLT).
I’ve always heard the adage that God will never give us more than we can handle. It seems like that statement is almost universally accepted as gospel truth. But is it true?
I do believe that God will never allow us to be tempted beyond our ability to endure. Scripture is explicit about that one.
Here’s what I believe. It’s not that God won’t give us anything we can’t handle, but that He won’t give us anything that HE can’t handle. He will on occasion allow us to go through circumstances that press our endurance to the point that we have no choice but to rely on God. We learn that we can’t bear these trials alone but instead learn to lean on each other in community.
After all, that’s what faith is. Christianity isn’t a glorified self-help program designed to make us independent and self-sufficient. It’s about how we learn to lean into and cling to and rely on Jesus until we get transformed by the renewing of our minds into His image.
If God never gave me anything I couldn’t tackle on my own, why would I even need God? What would be the point of God?
I think immediately of friends going through unbearable struggles at the moment. If you asked, they’d tell you that they know what it means to come to the end of self-reliance and to a place where all they can do is fall on the mercies and grace of God.
The good news is that God always comes through. God always saves and delivers His people. One day, those who endure will be able to comfort others going through the same ordeals.
God will never allow me or you to stay stagnant. He will accomplish all that designed for us in Christ.