Will God give you more than you can handle?
2 Corinthians 12:8-10 “For this thing I besought the Lord thrice, that it might depart from me. And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.”
When facing difficult situations, in effort to provide some sentiment of comfort and encouragement, it is not uncommon for a family member, friend, or possibly even a stranger to say, “God will never give you more than you can handle.” There are two questions, however, which must be answered in regards to this statement: First, “Is it true?” Second, “Why would God not give, or give, us more than we can handle?” The answer to the first question is: NO! God never promised, nor did He imply that He would not allow us to experience trouble greater than we can handle. While it is true, in 1 Corinthians 10:13, that Paul declared that we will not experience any temptation (to sin) that is not common to man; he also clearly stated that it was God who would make a way of escape so that we could bear it (meaning He would provide preventative means that sin not overtake us).
In answer to the second question, it is evident, by his request, that the Apostle Paul felt as though his “thorn in the flesh” was at least more than he wanted to handle, if not more than he knew he could handle. Yet, rather than God removing Paul’s “thorn in the flesh,” God chose to provide Paul with His all-sufficient grace. It is in God’s answer to Paul, “my strength is made perfect in weakness,” that we find the answer as to why God would allow us to experience difficulties too great for us to handle ourselves. The crux of the matter is this: The Lord wants to remind us of our insufficiency that He might prove the sufficiency of His grace in and through our lives. If we could handle the troubles and difficulties of life, we would never turn to Christ and rest in His sufficiency.
Our Lord calls and commands us to rest in Him! Matthew 11:28-29 “Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.” It is in our moments of weakness, that is when we understand just how weak we really are, we learn to rest in the sufficiency of Christ and His grace. For it is in this weakness that His strength is made perfect. Children of God take courage, although God will always give you more than you can handle, there is nothing you will experience that is a match for His all-sufficient grace!
– Pastor T