God will never give us more than we can handle.
First of all, for the religious folks out there, this sentiment isn't found in any religious text I've ever read. It's far more likely to show up on bumper stickers. In general, I am wary of things people throw around like scripture that I've never actually read in scripture. ("I never said it would be easy, I only said it would be worth it" ring a bell for anyone?)
In fact, this sentiment is actually just a misstatement of a scripture found in Corinthians (God will not allow you to be tempted beyond your ability, and let's not get into some big theological discussion about how those are two distinct ideas.)
Second, it's just clearly B.S.
Now, I don't mean to be a mean little raincloud of negativity -- if this is your personal mantra, more power to you.
But it is not true for everyone. It's not even close to true for most people.
Logically, you know it isn't true. People are broken by their life experiences all the time. Is the human mind resilient enough to bounce back from most things? I honestly don't know. I'd like to think so, but then again, I've never had anything truly bad (on the Grand Scale of Awful) ever happen to me. I don't want to be a total downer, but when you think of all the bad things that can and do happen to people (starvation, exploitation, degenerative disease, torture, unjust imprisonment, etc.) before you even get to death, bumper sticker theology just can't cut it.
Some people start out life with no chance. This is not a matter of "fairness," it's a matter of logic. It rains on the just and unjust alike. So while half of me believes in a loving God who knows me personally and cares about my struggles, the other half believes in that old clockmaker God who put his chips down on the table and let it ride. (Ah yes, the patented Ru mixed metaphor.)
Personally, I don't find those two visions of God particularly at odds with each other -- I just think of God as the anti-helicopter parent. He cares, but there will be no swooping to my rescue.
So is there a happier note coming already? Why yes, actually, there is.
In 1861, a woman named Julia Ward Howe woke up in the middle of the night and wrote down the lyrics to a song. One of those lines read, "As He died to make men holy, let us die to make men free."
The song was inspired by John Brown, an anti-slavery activist. In 1859, Brown had attempted to capture weapons from a federal armory and lead a slave rebellion in the South. He was caught, tried for treason against the state of Virginia, and executed for his crimes. Julia Ward Howe and her husband were abolitionists who had supported Brown's work.
Since the song was originally published, the words to "The Battle Hymn of the Republic" have been changed to, "As He died to make men holy, let us live to make men free."
With all due respect to Julia Ward Howe, I like the second version better. That's something I can believe.