Finding Purpose is Like Baking a Cake

Baking a Cake

My wife is an amazing cook. She is very humble about it, so much so she will likely not be too happy I'm even complimenting her in this post - sorry hun. However, like many great cooks, she does not like baking. Baking is a whole different art. Baking is precise, no dash here and there, no pinch of this or that. You must get the measurements spot on and the heat must be just right. 

While in a discussion about life, a friend once told me that finding your purpose in life is a lot like baking a cake. Each ingredient represents a life experience. Not all of the ingredients taste good on their own. Salt is, well, salty. Baking powder is tasteless and bitter, and while sugar is sweet, it needs a companion. While not good alone, each ingredient comes together to make a great tasting cake in the end. 

The bitter/salty ingredients represent difficulties in life. Taken in the moment, they are hard to swallow. However, you cannot have a cake without them. Leave out the baking powder and the cake won't rise. Decide to skip the flour and your cake will be more like a pudding. 

The sweet ingredients like sugar, represent the good times in life. The memories that cause joy and reveal passions. While also critical to the baking process, too much sugar will make the cake too sweet, just like in life, where too much of a good thing can end up being bad. It's all about balance. 

Once all of the ingredients are mixed together, it's time to apply the heat. As I mentioned earlier, precision is critical. Take the cake out of the oven too soon and you'll have a soggy mess unable to keep its shape without the pan. Leave it in too long, and it will burn. 

Heat represents life experience. If you think you've figured it all out, and go all-in on your life's calling without the proper experience, there is a chance you buckle under pressure. Similarly, if you wait too long, looking for the perfect opportunity, you may find yourself burned out, missing an opportunity to contribute to the world. 

Take some time this week to think about what stage of the process you are in. If you're in the middle of a trying time, it may just be a little salt to make your story that much more impactful. If you're in a season of peace, be thankful for the sweetness of life but resist overindulging.

And finally, consider whether you need to find a new challenge to strengthen your character, or maybe you just need to take a leap of faith and go after the calling God's placed on your heart.