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Why “God won’t give you more than you can handle” is a LIE!

Well-meaning people often say, "God won't give you more than you can handle," but this could not be further from the truth. He can, and He will. Here's why and what you can do about it.

The title just kind of puts it out there, right? The old saying that “God won’t give you more than you can handle” is a big fat lie.

He will give you more than you can handle.

If you’re a slow learner like me, He will give you more than you can handle a lot.

Why would He do that?

After all, isn’t His love for you endless, beyond comprehension? Doesn’t He want only the best for His children?

Yes, it is and He does.

But you, O Lord, are a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness.
-Psalm 86:15

But we come to rely on ourselves t00 much sometimes. We think we are the ones in control, and we forget that we need God very much.

You see, for some of us, it is only in our inability to handle something difficult that we reach out and depend on Him.

I am strong and competent. I have relied solely on myself for most of my life, and I have not often sought help from others. It’s just who I am (to my husband’s chagrin, but we are working on that).

And yet, I have found myself facedown on the ground, weeping in sorrow or grief or hopelessness more times than I can count.

In those times, God brought me to a place of total brokenness, a place of total surrender, a place of total failure.

I think back to those moments:

  • The grief I felt after my mom died
  • An especially difficult semester of student teaching
  • The mental breakdown that ended up in my hospitalization
  • The time when I was laid off from my job
  • When our car situation looked completely impossible

I bet you have moments like this, too. The circumstances are likely different, but the tenor is the same:

No way out. Hopelessness. Extreme sadness. Feeling out of control. Paralyzing fear.

Tell me I’m not the only one who feels these feelings. I know I’m not.

These times are overwhelming. They are, for all of us, more than we can bear on our own. They leave us broken and needy and crying out for help through miserable tears.

And that, my friend, is exactly where we find God. (Notice I didn’t say where God finds us, because He never left us to begin with. It is where we finally reach out for and find Him.)

We realize in those moments that we cannot handle this thing, this life on our own.

We need power and faithfulness and strength and comfort and help.

We need God.

So as long as we take off on our own, like children who’ve just learned to ride bikes, God will continue to let us fall off and scrape our knees. He will allow us to get banged up and bloody. He will remind us to turn to Him.

He will give us more than we can handle.

Then He will rescue us when we cry out to Him.

And maybe the next time, we will remember that we need Him forever and ever and not just in the bad times.

But probably we won’t, and then it will all happen again so we can remember.

© 2016 – 2018, Tara Ziegmont. All rights reserved.

4 thoughts on “Why “God won’t give you more than you can handle” is a LIE!”

  1. I just stumbled upon this blog because I googled “scriptures for anger.” I came across “12 Bible Verses to Overcome Anger and Resentment” which led me to “13 Bible verses to Overcome Disappointment” and I feel like you know me. I feel like you know that I was up three nights ago, restless with disappointment. Like you know that in my disappointments I’ve learned that God wants me to stop being so darn independent. Like you know my heavy heart needed a Word from God, and He told you EXACTLY what to say.
    Whatever you do, please NEVER stop writing. This is such a blessing, and you’re such an awesome, transparent woman of God. Thank you Tara! Your obedience to write from the heart is more of a gift than you know.

  2. Wrong- This passage says He wont allow you to be tempted, not that He will tempt you. This is a common misconception. Temptations happen to all of us, we are sinners and live in a broken world but with Christ . . .you can handle it. A good reason to read our bibles to get to know Him better.

    Scripture: No temptation has seized you that isn’t common for people. But God is faithful. He won’t allow you to be tempted beyond your abilities. Instead, with the temptation, God will also supply a way out so that you will be able to endure it.

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