Eric has been asked this question and has taught on this several times lately. His answer always makes me have to realign my thinking- from the one that we hear quoted all the time to the one that is scripturally supported. The answer is,”Yes. He does give you more than you can handle.” ouch.
Somewhere along the way we have added a thought to scripture. Kind of like “God helps those who help themselves.” We think that these are scriptural thoughts- we quote them in times of trouble. “God doesn’t give you more than you can handle.”
But there is much evidence that He often gives more than we can handle- alone. Circumstances that take us to the end of ourselves- beyond our ability to control- a place where we have no way to change our circumstances with our abilities, our cunning, our resources, our intellect, our words. He takes us to the end of ourselves and gives us more than we can handle.
And somewhere in that place, HE reaches in and rescues us. All of a sudden, we see our place as creation and we acknowledge His place as creator. We call out to Him and He hears our cry and His steadfast love meets our needs.
We are studying Jonah right now- A man who fled from God- who wanted to ignore God’s word- who didn’t want to hear God. And who ended up in an ocean, thrown overboard and in a circumstance beyond what he could handle. He is rescued by a fish that is sent by God. And in the belly of that large fish, He calls out to God- ironically, needing God to hear him. And God does. God hears Jonah’s cry of repentance and brings rescue to a situation that Jonah could not solve.
What would it mean if we rethought our tough circumstances? Instead of viewing them from a self reliant perspective that says,” I can handle this, no matter what life throws at me” to viewing them from a place where we say,” this is more than I can handle” and we cry out to the Lord to solve the impossible with His supernatural ways. And being prepared to say that He is in charge and whatever He deems is good. It is significant to note that God’s call on Jonah’s life never changes- He still must do what God asked him to do before he fled. But now, he knows the rescuing love of God. He will be sharing about the rescuing love of God with people and he will identify with them because he has experienced it himself.
Whatever circumstance we are facing, it is meant for our good and His glory. May we rest under that truth.