What is the one line we hear so often when life sucks? God doesn’t give you more than you can handle! I know I was told that numerous times during my chemo, facing amputation, and even during things before all of this. What if I told you that it’s not true though? There is nowhere in the Bible that it says that. In fact, the Bible is filled with examples of people NOT being able to handle what they’ve been given.
What the Bible does say is that we won’t be given TEMPTATIONS beyond what we can handle. (Look at 1 Corinthians 10) Getting cancer was not a temptation. Sure, there were temptations within that struggle but it wasn’t one. When you think about what that statement says, it goes against everything God actually does say.
First, God doesn’t give us trials. He allows them to happen. Look at the story of Job. God didn’t kill his kids or give him sores beyond what you can imagine. He allowed it to happen but it was the devil that actually did it. Now, this leads to a whole other thought about WHY does God allow these things to happen that I won’t get into yet.
Second, and most importantly, when you tell someone that you’re saying they don’t need God. Now I know that’s not what you mean but that’s what it says. You’re saying don’t rely on God, you’ve got this! Let me tell you something, I didn’t have chemo. I didn’t and still don’t have amputation. I didn’t eat for 5 days my first round of chemo and was down to 136 pounds. Nobody can be told you’re losing your leg, half of your pelvis, and possibly control of your bowels and bladder and “have it.”
Instead, what God does say is that He gives power to the weak. He is our refuge and strength. Look at Psalm 121. “Where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord…” Looking back, it’s amazing to me what God did. I married a nurse. My wife switched jobs about a year prior to a job, company, and bosses that made he being with me for months possible. Instead of going to Mayo Clinic, their folks were all at a conference and my ortho here studied at the University of Minnesota under one of the top orthopedic oncologist surgeons in the country and got me in there. Both of our families live close enough and had the ability to watch our daughter for all the months I was gone. Our church family, work families, friends, blood families, and people we didn’t know, rallied around us with love and support.
Did I make any of that stuff happen myself? Was it my strength that got me through it and continues to? The answer is no way. If you are somebody who tells people that God doesn’t give them more than they can handle, please don’t. Most of us don’t believe it anyway. Instead, turn to biblical passages. Maybe Psalm 27, or 23. Maybe something else. But I beg you, please stop telling people the lie that God doesn’t give us more than we can handle.