I see variations of this often:
“God never gives us more than we can handle!” (So chin up, be encouraged! This disaster you’re facing isn’t as disastrous as you think it is so YAY!)
The problem is, this is an untruth, and the spreading of it is actually resulting in deeper discouragment, feelings of failure and a debilitating sense of inadequacy for a lot of people.
The only verse in the Bible that even remotely comes close to the aforementioned sentiment is this one:
1 Corinthians 10:13 ESV
No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and He will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation He will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.
It says He will not let you be TEMPTED beyond what you can bear (and, to further clarify, the writer is speaking to people who believe Jesus is their Savior).
As far as disaster is concerned, there are tons of scriptures referring to it in various ways, but they all underscore a very important point: GOD is our Rock, our Shelter, our Refuge and our Strength.
Philippians 4:13 says that we can do all things through Christ Who strengthens us. Would we really need Christ if God never gave us more than we could handle on our own? No, we wouldn’t.
The fact is, we DO need Christ and God DOES give us heavier burdens than we can handle often. He does this because He wants us to lean on Him; He wants to show us His power and He wants to show His love for us by being there for us!
Romans 8:28 says that God is working all things together for the good of those who love Him. There are some very important qualifiers in this verse:
1) All things: That means ‘everything’, from the job loss to the cold virus to the unpleasantness of changing poopy diapers several times a day. ALL things.
2) Good: This one is tricky, because we like to define ‘good’ as ‘pleasant, comfortable, easy’. But in reality, ‘good’ means
Adjective: To be desired or approved of.
Noun: That which is morally right; righteousness.
God is working all things for the good—toward an end result that is desired and approved of by Him. That end result (also according to scripture) is our righteousness, our being like Him. This sounds kind of boring and unappealing to most people but that’s because we forget that God is the creator of joy—and He sent Jesus so that our joy may be full! So the ultimate end result is our fullness of joy, and THIS, my friends, is good indeed.
3) Those who love Him: This is the most important part of this verse. If someone doesn’t love God, they will not have the same comfort that someone who *does* love God will have, during a trial or disaster. His benefits are for His followers. This is why it is so important for those of us who know Him to point others to Him, so they can experience the same comfort and strength that we do. The ‘comfort’ that the world offers is so empty…
So let’s summarize:
God WILL give us more than we can handle but He has GOOD INTENTIONS toward us, and being perfect like He is, His good intentions always bear good fruit. If you love God, He’s got your back. Life might be uncomfortable, unpleasant and hard, but the end result WILL be fullness of joy (and we get to experience a lot of joy even before the end result!).
So be encouraged! But be encouraged with Truth! The world’s version sounds good and even feels good, but when it doesn’t pan out as anticipated, you’ll end up even more discouraged than you were when the chips first fell. God’s Truth always pans out. Believe it so you can experience it.