Tuesday, 31 January 2017

More Than We Can Handle by Susan L.

  The paraphrase from scriptures is "God will never give us more than we can handle" based on 1 Corinthians 10:13. It's an expression often used in an effort to comfort someone going through difficulties. The few times I'd been on the receiving end had left me feeling inadequate, lost, and guilty because it sure felt like I'd failed to be "strong enough to handle it." Whatever "it" might have been. It also had me wondering about a God so cruel as to test our strength and faith through terrible trials.
  Didn't the devil have fun with that!
  So I'd argue and question the validity of this concept because I felt that the Lord frequently gave me far more than I could handle. That way I'd be encouraged to lean into Him even more.
  I decided to test this idea.
  First of all, the actual scripture is about being strong in the face of temptation. It has nothing to do with hard times...Mind you, hard times are full of temptation: finger pointing, blame, hating, judgement, and self pity come to mind. I talked with a friend once about why she was angry all the time. Her response was, "It is easier." I bumped into her not long after and was amazed at how God had brought her peace once she decided to let go of the anger.
  The scripture also makes it very clear that God will make a way of escape so that we (or you, as Paul says) don't fall into temptation.
  I did have my eyes opened regarding this often used phrase thanks to someone else's dissertation online. "We" is the key. God will never give us more than we can handle.
  "We" is community, partnerships, relationships with our fellow humans and our heavenly Father. "We" is followers of Jesus. "We" is prayer for each other, a shoulder to cry on, a hand to hold. "We" is grace and encouragement. "We" is uplifting one another, bearing one another in all longsuffering.
  "We" is love in action.
  So, yes, God will never give us more than we can handle simply because we were never meant to go it alone.
  "Therefore let him who thinks he stands take heed lest he fall. No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape that you may be able to bear it." 1 Cor 10:12-13


  1. What a great insight!

    I have been doing various bible studies lately, and one of the things I've learned in general is that we should never take one-liners from the Bible out of context. We should read the entire paragraph, or sometimes even the entire chapter, to get the authentic meaning. It's too easy to cut off a one-liner at whatever point is suitable to a purpose, and miss the real message.

    I've also been learning a lot about how Jesus intentionally set up a "church" of believers, because, as you imply, God has created us for relationship, and Jesus wants His believers to be one as He and His Father are one. We are there to support and encourage one another - brothers and sisters in Jesus.