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Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Why God Gives You More Than You Can Handle

There are many half-truths circulating around Christendom. Thoughts that started as Biblical truth have been misinterpreted and misremembered so the original meaning is lost and a mere shadow remains in its place. The worst offender in my opinion comes from the truth listed in 1 Corinthians 10:13:
No temptation has overtaken you beyond what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted/tried beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so you can endure it."
Popular Christianity takes this passage and says "God won't give me anything I can't handle."

But I say that God intentionally gives us trials that we cannot handle on our own to teach us that HE IS THE ONE with the way out.

Coming to the very edge of what we are capable of handling is scary and humbling. In those scary humbling moments God is there to provide a path of endurance. Often its at the very limit of what I can handle when I am finally humble enough to see the path of endurance that God is giving me. Until that point I think I am still in control, still have a plan, still have it all together. At the breaking point it becomes clear: I never had it in my control in the first place. And then emerges God's path of endurance. God makes the way.

I've had a lifetime of trials that I can't handle. Cancer during pregnancy, metastasis to stage IV, multiple ministry crises in my husband's 5 years of administration, whole brain radiation, experimental treatment, and most recently a simple partial seizure from an old brain met, followed by a diffuse drug reaction to the medicine meant to manage it.


But the story doesn't stop there. With each trial, God provided a path of endurance, a way out so I could endure. In my darkest moments he didn't leave. In my saddest moments he gave me hope that the sadness wouldn't last forever. When death was knocking, he reminded me that death is not the end. God brought his people near, filled my heart with his Spirit, and told me to never, ever, ever give up. Persevere. Endure. The way out.

There WILL be trials beyond what you yourself can bear. There will NOT be a trial that God cannot lead you out of if you let him. If you let him.

EEG Sept 29   //   Drug Hypersensitivity Rash Oct 13   //   It looked like this but RED and all over (that's an arm)

A couple weeks ago I had a simple partial seizure that won me a night's stay at Vanderbilt. The words in my mind were not the words coming out of my mouth. I kept telling John "I'm mixing up my colors" when I meant to say words. My right hand started going numb, (I knew from my years teaching Anatomy that this was Broca's area malfunctioning) so we went to the ER by ambulance.

Neurology decided it was a simple partial seizure. Simple meaning that I didn't lose consciousness, partial meaning only part of the brain was involved, and seizure meaning abnormal electrical activity in the brain. I unknowingly and stupidly raised my seizure risk by fooling with medication and having too little to eat, to drink, and sleep. That combined with the structural abnormality (and whatever other various factors I don't know about) likely caused the seizure.

THEN while we were in Miami for treatment this weekend, I developed a generalized and widespread rash to the medication I had started. So while were in Miami for outpatient cancer treatment, I stayed 2 days in the hospital, stopped and started medications for seizures, and received zero cancer treatment.

I debated whether or not to post this very personal information, but decided that being honest about scary things is important. I was scared, I was angry, and I felt isolated. (Another thing?! Two things?! Really?!!) The fear slowly vanished, the anger turned to resilience, and in the place of isolation I found hope from those who surrounded me. God provided a way to endure when I had too much to bear.

And he will do the same for you.


  1. Love you guys! Sorry it's been rocky, but I'm always so encouraged by your words!

  2. Thank you for sharing, Prayers for you everyday.

  3. i always appreciate your sharing your blogs. You are an encouragement to me. Praying for all three of you.

  4. Thank you for sharing, details as well. Thank you for allowing God to work through you in sharing your difficult walk. Many will continue to be strengthened by your story. Continued prayers for you all.


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