(CCSLQ-11) Load That Breaks

This is part of an occasional series (currently it’s weekly) exploring quotations attributed to C.S. Lewis that are questionable for one reason or another. There is an “at a glance” page HERE to quickly see what has been posted so far in this series. Also, if you haven’t already, be sure to read the INTRODUCTION to this series. 

Load That Breaks

“It’s not the load that breaks you down. It’s the way you carry it.”

Carrying a heavy load is rarely ever enjoyable. While among friends, loads are relatively lighter, they can STILL feel heavy. So, while this quotation, which is NOT from Lewis, appears encouraging one can easily ask if something like 1,000 pounds would be unbearable no matter HOW you carry it.

Who said it? A simple search online finds two other authors as the possible source: Lou Holtz and Lena Horne. Either way it is not found in the publishing writings of C.S. Lewis. So, choose to like the quotation or not, but just don’t give credit to Lewis.

WHAT LEWIS SAID THAT’S RELATED (or closest to it):

“One is given strength to bear what happens to one, but not the one hundred and one different things that might happen.” (Emphasis by Lewis)
from The Collected Letters of C.S. Lewis, Volume 3 (to Mary Willis Shelburne on 3/8/1956) 


“If we are all going to be destroyed by an atomic bomb, let that bomb when it comes find us doing sensible and human things—praying, working, teaching, reading, listening to music, bathing the children, playing tennis, chatting to our friends over a pint and a game of darts—not huddled together like frightened sheep and thinking about bombs. They may break our bodies (any microbe can do that) but they need not dominate our minds.”
from On Living in an Atomic Age (in Present Concerns)


“I could well believe that it is God’s intention, since we have refused milder remedies, to compel us into unity, by persecution even and hardship. Satan is without doubt nothing else than a hammer in the hand of a benevolent and severe God. For all, either willingly or unwillingly, do the will of God: Judas and Satan as tools or instruments, John and Peter as sons.”
from The Collected Letters of C.S. Lewis, Volume 2 (to Don Giovanni Calabria on 9/20/1947)


“I’ve met so many innocent sufferers who seem to be gladly offering their pain to God in Christ as part of the Atonement, so patient, so meek, even so at peace, and so unselfish that we can hardly doubt they are being, as St. Paul says, “made perfect by suffering.”
from The Collected Letters of C.S. Lewis, Volume 3 (to Belle Allen on 11/1/1954) 

The next quote examined is:

“Getting over a painful experience is much like crossing monkey bars—let go to move forward.”

Related Articles:

What Lewis NEVER Wrote  (Podcast)

Not Quite Lewis – Podcast Version

Not Quite Lewis – Questionable Lewisian Quotations (Conf. Paper)

Updated 11/14/2015

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