Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Lean On Me

I’ve been thinking about a friend who recently lost three family members in one week, in two separate events. All in the same week she was also scheduled for minor surgery. The amount of crap that kept snowballing for this woman was getting ridiculous, to the point where even her husband had to laugh and shake his head “I just can’t believe this, you know?”.

And while I prayed for her to find some peace, and to just get through the surgery without added complications, I was reminded of something my friend Julie said. (Julie’s husband has been dealing with cancer for 5 1/2 years, so here is a woman who knows a thing or two about dealing with life’s crap.)

She said “I don’t believe that God only gives you what you can handle.”

When I first read this (it was in a meme on Facebook), I didn’t think I agreed. After all, I think we can all be strong if we want to be, and sometimes our finest hour comes in the face of tragedy. I would like to think that God has given us all the tools necessary to deal with tough situations.

But the more I thought about this, the more I had to agree with Julie. I think, on many occasions, that yes, we are all well equipped to survive grief and suffering and that we are sometimes the better for it in the end. I also now believe, however, that God often does throw a few curveballs too many. But not without reason.

God will occasionally give you more than you can handle so that you are required to depend on others, and depend on Him.

At the very root of our faith is the idea of submission, of giving in to God. Well, you might not ever do that if you didn’t think you needed some help. Asking others for help is difficult for a lot of folks. It humbles us to admit that we can’t do something alone. From the time that we’re toddlers we strive to be able to do things by ourselves, and this is part of being human.

While being generally self-sufficient is a good thing, it’s okay to need other people and to need God, when life gets difficult. People love to be needed, and so does God. In fact, God would love for us to ask for His help every day, not just when tragedy hits. We often become closer to those who help us, and so it is with God.

So this is how he teaches us, to push us down once in a while in order to help us back up, to a hopefully better and more peaceful place than when we started.

Posted by Laura Beutler in 20:22:28

One Response to “Lean On Me”

  1. Sherry says:

    This is profound. I have always chaffed at the God only gives us what we can handle, because it isn’t what He made us to do, to handle things, He made us to love infinitely, and loving infinitely iinvolves far more than we can “handle” even with all the gifts we have at our disposal. Thanks for the wisdom. Prayers for your friend in these crushing days.