Let me start by painting a picture for you. It’s 2:00 on Wednesday smack in the middle of a horrendous week full of therapy, services you are working to set up to help with a new diagnosis, changing directions for another one of your foster child’s cases, specialists, as well as all the general parenting duties. Basically it has been a tears, tantrums, gnashing of teeth kind of week. You’ve been holding it together until your husband gets home to help give you some relief, and then you get the call that he will be home late due to a dinner meeting! Of course you remember just then that your son needs supplies for a school project and a dollar store run with all 5 kids is necessary.
You successfully get everyone into the Dollar store and put 2 in a cart while managing the other 3 crazies in a store where they can afford anything and everything is at arm’s reach! After redirecting 100 times and attempting to put a positive spin on why they can not have everything they pick up the meltdown begins. You are now pushing the cart with 2 inside with holding another whose face is hot with screaming and wrangling the 2 other’s into the checkout line.
That’s the moment when I hear it “God doesn’t give you more than you can handle”. Some well-meaning, sweet, middle-aged, kid’s-grown woman looks at me reassuringly. I smile and say “It’s been a long day”, but what I am really thinking is “thank you but I disagree”.
I believe God does give us more than we can handle. However it doesn’t stop there. He gives us more than we can handle and then gives us the strength to make it through as we surrender to Him for help. To say that God doesn’t give us more than we can handle would be limiting Him in the confines of our humanity and imperfectness.
Since becoming foster parents God has given us more than we can handle dozens of times over again and every time He has grown in us the strength to handle it. I am certainly grateful that this life and this journey is not limited by what I can handle, but unlimited by an all-powerful, all-knowing God who will continue to stretch me beyond what I can handle to do more than I ever could on my own!