Tuesday, March 15, 2011

"God wont give you more than you can handle".....right?

In a single word.... wrong.

How many times have you been told those words?  How many times have we said those words to other people?  The intent is to comfort, "Don't worry - God wont give you any more than you can handle" but if you've ever been told this, you know, 'comfort' is rarely, if ever, the feeling those words give you.

You (speaking from experience) feel inadequate, discouraged, guilty, or angry - but not comforted.   You wonder what's wrong with you that you feel like whatever you are going through IS more than you can handle, why can't you stand this pain if God promised you could?  I often felt that God must have a Much higher opinion of my pain threshold than I!

But here's the truth:  that promise doesn't exist, at least not as we use it.  What we have to remember is that we can make the scriptures say virtually anything we want it to if we read it out of context.  Just like when a news show makes someone look like they said something they didn't by taking just a small snippet out and not playing their whole sentence.

Let's look at the verses:

1 Corinthians 10:12-13
12 So, if you think you are standing firm, be careful that you don’t fall!13 No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can endure it.

See, the actual verse has absolutely nothing to do with pain, sorrow, mourning, death, or trials.  The entire context of the scripture is about temptation.  

Let's think about it for a minute.  If we ever truly stopped to consider the statement of "God wont put on you more than you can bear" we would recognize, even without reading the true context of the verse, that it has to be false.  Consider this truth:  if we could handle everything on our own, then what would be the point of God?  If we believed that we could handle everything on our own, that there is nothing we face that we can't just grit our teeth and bear on our own, then Christ would have died for nothing.  But praise God, that's not the case!  We can NOT handle.... anything on our own, we desperately Require God's unfailing grace, and mercy, and comfort, and strength, and rest, and peace, and love.  

You can Not handle on your own the pain, grief, and sorrow you face in life, you were never designed to be able to, but you can run to a loving God and bury your face on His strong shoulder and cry and He will comfort you, and He will help you get through this life that you can Not get through with out Him.

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