God only gives us what we can handle?

Last night a good friend asked me what I think God has shown me through my illness, or if I thought that illness is a teaching tool, or perhaps stuff just happens and tha’s how it is. My immediate response was that through everything, I understand more and more that I have absolutely NO control over anything. In the end, all anyone can do is let it go, and give it to God to hold. 

After my initial response, I was really taken by the question, and have thought of the foundations of God’s purpose, and His being, and what He wants for us. Many of my friends (myself included) have been going through long-term health/financial/relationship hardships. A common theme for us is “God only gives us what he knows we can handle”. I don’t know, after thinking about this all day, I don’t think that statement is accurate. I think God gives us the strength we need to go through things that are thrown our way. 

One of the basic beliefs I have is that all things that come from God are good. God doesn’t give pain, suffering or hardships. He certainly didn’t give me my Crohn’s Disease. So where does God fit in? God is a healer. But he hasn’t healed my Crohn’s (yet). Many would say that He hasn’t healed me because He has a greater purpose for it, or there is a lesson I need to learn. Really? I can’t beleive that. Our God is not a punisher, He is a forgiver. He is my Father, Mother. He doesn’t want to see me unhappy, or in pain. 

So, where does God fit in here? God gives me a safe place to rest when I am tired or lonely. He listens when I feel lost. He heals me. Sometimes it is not the way I want. Sometimes the healing comes after the event, years later. God brings us people who need us because of what we have lived through, so that we can listen to and help them, and in that moment we receive the healing we prayed for.

I think God is like the ultimate Human Resourses Director. He knew us before we were even formed, he knew our skill-sets, He knew what we would live through and experience. More than all of that, He knew who we would need in our lives, and who would need us, and as the Great Giver, He puts us together with those people.

I think God is the great Teacher. When we are lost in something, he shows the way out. But He makes us work it out ourselves. We need to listen, and act. Nothing is just given. We are expected to do our own work so that we can apply our skills later. God brings us together with others so that we can learn from them. He uses people to show us love, forgiveness, patience, strength.

God does not bring us pain. He doesn’t “let” us experience things so that we can become a different person. That would not be the act of a God who loves His children.

We experience things, and because of God’s love for us, we can reach for Him and find strength. We can feel secure and safe knowing His love for us is powerful.

I have learned that no matter how dark, lost, sick, desperate I feel, He is there in that moment, holding me.

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