Strong Enough

I’ve noticed that this year has been especially difficult for many of my friends. Perhaps it’s because I’ve gone through some really tough times myself this year that my awareness has been heightened toward the problems of others. I can’t recall how many times I’ve seen friends ask for prayers for situations either they or friends/family of theirs have been facing. Almost every time, the comment section will include two common themes: 1) God won’t put on you more than you can handle, and 2) God must think you’re strong enough to handle this, or He wouldn’t put you through it. While the people making those comments are well-intentioned and only seeking to provide encouragement, they are wrong. In fact, those two sayings are the exact opposites of the truth.

Nowhere does the Bible say God won’t give us more than we can handle. It does say that His grace is sufficient (2 Cor. 12:9). If we never had to face anything we couldn’t handle, we wouldn’t ever need sufficient grace. God quite often puts on us more than we can handle so that we have to go to Him for help.

As for being strong… God chooses to use weak things and weak people so that His power is demonstrated (1 Cor. 1:27). Telling someone they are going through something because they are strong has a tendency to cause pride in our own efforts. What we must do when we face troubles is humble ourselves before God and admit that it is only through Him that we can have victory.

I don’t mean to sound negative in what I’ve said. Actually, it is all very positive. When God puts you through a hardship, it means that He has chosen to do a work through YOU. When you recognize that it is more than you can handle and that you aren’t strong enough to get through it on your own, you are putting yourself right where God wants you, right where He can get all the glory when you come out on the other side. Remember “I can do all things through Christ…” (Phil 4:13).

This song by Matthew West says what I’ve tried to say in such a beautiful way.

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