Growth Through Challenges & Strawberry Crepe Cakes

James 1:3-4 (tpt)

For you know that when your faith is tested it stirs up power within you to endure all things. And then as your endurance grows even stronger it will release perfection into every part of your being until there is nothing missing and nothing lacking.


For the past few years, I’ve found myself questioning why this season of my life continues to be challenging. I can’t put my finger on where the challenge lies; it just feels like I’m stretching and growing ways that I never imagined, and to be honest, it’s uncomfortable.

Thoughts of doubt have crossed my mind over and over again; if God loves me, why isn’t He helping me? If He’s good, why is He allowing this discomfort to take place? But the truth is that challenges and struggles are gifts of growth. The doubt and despair that they cause in our minds only come from one place; the enemy. There’s nowhere that teaches us that God will eliminate the growing pains that come in seasons on this journey. In fact, the more time I spend in the Word, the more I realize that Jesus has been telling us about these times of growth all along. He’s been setting the expectation that it will be difficult to become more like Him.

Since this is something I find myself contemplating a lot, I thought it might be helpful to look at some of the parables Jesus offered us so that we can get clear on what we might be able to expect in terms of growth, and what it might actually feel like to be challenged in a way that brings us closer to Him. Over the next 2 days, we’re looking at 4 passages that break this down a little further.

Matthew 13:24-30: “Then Jesus told the people another story. He said, ‘This is what the kingdom of heaven is like. A farmer planted some good wheat seeds into his field. But one night, when everyone was sleeping, a bad person came to the farmer’s field. He did not like the farmer. This bad person planted seeds from weeds among the good wheat seeds. Then the bad person went away again. The good seeds grew and the plants began to make new seeds. But when this happened, the weeds also grew. So the farmer’s servants came to speak to him. “Master, you planted only good seeds in your field but now many weeds are also growing there. How did this happen?” they asked him. The farmer said to his servants, “A bad person who does not like me has done this.” So, the servants then asked the farmer, “Do you want us to go and pull up the weeds?” The farmer replied, “No, I do not want you to do that. If you pull up the weeds, you may also pull up some of the good wheat plants. Let the good plants and the weeds grow up together. When all the seeds become ripe, I will tell the workers to cut down the weeds first. Then they will tie them together and burn them. Then they will cut the wheat and bring it into my building. I will store it there (EASY).”

As Christians, we can expect to live in a broken world alongside both believers and non-believers. We’ll be surrounded by sin, hurt, and pain. We won’t be separated from those things until we reach our final home with the Lord. But we can rest in knowing that there’s hope for a future without the “weeds”; that those who love and trust in the Lord will be rescued before the weeds are thrown out.

Matthew 13:45-46: “The kingdom of heaven is like what happens when a shop owner is looking for fine pearls. After finding a very valuable one, the owner goes and sells everything in order to buy that pearl (CEV).”

We can also expect to have to make sacrifices for our faith. If our ultimate goal is to grow and allow God to use us for His glory, we won’t always be able to have our cake and eat it too. Sometimes, the process of growing means giving up what we enjoy or the things that are comfortable before they’re replaced with something else. But in the mean time, we have God’s promises for what we’re getting in return. Imagine that shop owner; he sold everything. He walked away from the auction (how do you sell all your things at one time?) with nothing left, and he had to return back to buy that pearl. What if someone else bought it in the interim? Or what if someone wasn’t watching their kid in the pearl store and they broke it? He had to trust the process, and so do we.

Tomorrow, we’ll check out the remaining 2 passages about growth and expectations!


Have you found the process and journey of self improvement and growth challenging? What areas do you find yourself struggling in the most?


For continued perseverance and strength as you walk through your faith journey.

4 • 1/4 of Recipe

Strawberry Crepe Cakes

3 minPrep Time

15 minCook Time

18 minTotal Time

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  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
  • 1 cup unsweetened almond milk
  • 1 tablespoon unsweetened apple sauce
  • 2 tablespoons sweetener of choice
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 1/2 cup chopped strawberries
  • 1/2 cup greek yogurt
  • dash of sea salt
  • non-stick cooking spray


  1. Put all ingredients, except for strawberries and greek yogurt in a blender or food processor
  2. Spray a small frying pan (8 inches) and heat on high until very hot
  3. Reduce heat to medium and pour enough batter into the skillet so that the bottom is covered and immediately swirl it around until it covers the entire pan with a thin layer
  4. Using a spatula, loosen the edges of the crepe, and after about 2 minutes, flip it over
  5. Cook until both sides are browned
  6. Remove from heat and lay flat
  7. Repeat process until you've cooked half of the batter
  8. Add strawberries to remaining batter and blend again
  9. Repeat process of cooking crepes until all batter is used
  10. Lay a crepe on a plate and spread greek yogurt across the top
  11. Repeat the process alternating between plain and strawberry flavored crepes
  12. Top with additional strawberries and serve

Tips & Tools

If you’re experiencing a bit of a sweet tooth this morning, you can also replace the greek yogurt with whipped cream! But you didn’t hear it from me.

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