Saturday, August 25, 2007

Sylvia: In Him

Have you ever heard the expression, "God doesn't give you more than you can handle"? Well, I would like to know where that expression came from. It's not in the Bible, I can tell you that. Just recently that phrase was mentioned to me at different times by a couple of women who clearly had more than they could handle on their plates. They were believers so I was quick to add to their brave yet misguided statement, "IN HIM. God does not give you more than you can handle IN HIM."

I have come to realize that God invites and challenges us to lean on Him through the tough stuff that He allows in our lives. I have a few things on my own plate that I know I could not handle without the grace and wisdom and patience of my Lord because they are long term challenges. I am by nature a bullet biter. You know, one who gets in a jam and bites the bullet until it passes. Spiritually, it is a very unhealthy trait because it shows self-dependence and self-reliance instead of God-dependence and God-reliance. Victory over the difficulties that overwhelm us in our lives can only come by dependence and reliance on God.

Take for example the story of Gideon from Judges 6: Gideon's clan was the weakest of the tribe of Manasseh and he was the least in his father's house, meaning he had no authority, yet God called him to subdue the Midianites who had oppressed Israel for seven years. When they would come to raid Israel's crops, the Midianites were said to have been as numerous as the locust and without number, but God used an unknown man with no authority and gave him victory over them with just 300 men at his disposal. I would say that God had given Gideon a whole lot more than he could handle on his own and I'm convinced it is no different in our own circumstances and situations.

Consider Job, Joshua and the walls of Jericho, David and Goliath, Hezekiah and Sennacherib, and even Jeremiah who became so discouraged that he tried to quit! Consider the apostle Paul who was beaten, shipwrecked, imprisoned and even stoned and left for dead. All were given more than they could handle, apart from their faith in God, as a testimony to us who would also struggle and have difficulties in our lives.

So when confronted with something that is more than you can handle in your life remember this: Jesus says in Matthew 11:28-30, "Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yolk upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yolk is easy and My burden is light."

IN HIM ladies. Never forget, IN HIM.

God bless you!


Shannon said...

What a great reminder, Sylvia! How prone we are to self-dependence, and how silly that is when we have such a mighty God to lean on and draw strength from.

Thank you. :)

Cora said...

Hey, Sylvia, I wonder if you are misunderstanding the women who make that comment. They probably don't intend to imply that they can handle it on their own. But maybe they are referencing a verse I often lean on, which is 1 Corinthians 10:13:
"...and God is faithful; He will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear..."

But I (and probably they) agree with you that it is God who makes us able to bear it. The verse goes on to say:
"...but HE will also provide a way out so that you can stand up under it."

I totally agree that it is only IN HIM.

suzzanne said...

Sylvia, thank you for that reminder. I myself am going thru a rough time right now and sometimes I forget to stop and ask Him to help me get through it. Thank you, thank you.

Laurie said...

Thank you for this, Sylvia!
I have thought about or used this truth everyday since you shared a bit, at our meeting. Thanks for all the examples from the word.

Kim said...

You're so right, Sylvia. Only the Lord can give us the endurance we need to get through this stuff. Thank you for posting this. Love you!

But those who wait on the LORD
Shall renew their strength;
They shall mount up with wings like eagles,
They shall run and not be weary,
They shall walk and not faint.

~Isaiah 40:31

Tracy said...

At a time in my life where I am definitely feeling I have bit off more than I can chew, the words you wrote provide me comfort. Somehow, today, through CWO newsletter, I was drawn to this blog - very much what I needed to read. Thank-you for your words as I am reminded to lean on God and that I am not in this alone even though I have felt very much like that lately.

Shannon said...

We're so glad you happened upon us, Tracy. And no, you're not alone. Not in the least.

Please come back again! You're in our prayers today.