Friday, 8 May 2020

Bee About His Business!

One late afternoon in May 2020, my husband Jan and I were on our daily permitted walk during the lockdown period of the Covid-19 pandemic. We were journeying around our usual paths of Saint James’s Park next to Buckingham Palace when I noticed several purple flowers sprouting from a spot in the grass.

Intrigued by the beautiful colour, I made my way over to have a closer look. Straight away I noticed one of the flowers had a furry little honey bee dotting about, ceaselessly gathering pollen and determinedly going about his daily tasks. I thought to myself, “Well he’s not isolating or affected by this lockdown! He’s still got work to do!”

As we carried on with our walk, I pondered the fact that the bee was completely oblivious to the chaos going on in the world and I found his continuation of normal routine strangely comforting! I liked that this part of life had remained unaffected by the virus and nature could just continue on as always.

As I thought about the bee carrying on with his business, undeterred by the pandemonium around him, a verse from the Bible soon popped into my head. It was the words of Jesus in Luke 2:49 which reads,

“And He said to them, “Why did you seek Me?
Did you not know that I must be about My Father’s business?””

I soon began to think about how although the pandemic had caused me to lose all of my work, it didn’t mean I no longer had a purpose and couldn’t be used by God for His glory. Knowing that this isolation time was of no surprise to my Saviour and had always been part of His plan for my life, it helped me realise I could still utilise my time wisely and be used by God.

It reminded me of a sermon I had recently heard, given by my Pastor, Alwyn Wall. He spoke about both Joseph, the son of Jacob and the Apostle Paul in the Bible. He mentioned how Joseph was wrongly imprisoned for refusing to sleep with the wife of Potiphar and the Apostle Paul was placed on house arrest for sharing the Gospel. In both of these situations neither man ever lamented what he couldn’t achieve for God in this time of restriction and isolation. Rather, they allowed God to work out His eternal purposes for their lives and achieve incredible things for His Kingdom through these events! I felt this was incredibly applicable and relevant to the situation we were all now living in during the lockdown.

By the time Jan and I were making our way around Green Park that same day, I had already begun to form my poem “Bee About His Business” in my head. I certainly hadn’t set off expecting to be inspired by a humble little honey bee but I’m happy to receive inspiration from anywhere and I think God’s creation is one of the best places to find it!

’Twas a glorious encounter one late afternoon in May
When I saw a busy honey bee go about his day.
I watched in sheer amazement as he raced against the clock,
Obliviously unaware we’d all been asked to stop.

It seemed he’d failed to notice that the days had truly changed,
To see such heedless busyness was really rather strange!
Sticking to his old routine he hurried through the hour,
Never losing focus as he danced across each flower.

His dedication evident, committed to his cause.
I asked him, “Mr Honey Bee, don’t you need to pause?
Perhaps you haven’t heard that we’ve been asked to stop awhile.”
With this, my little furry friend addressed me with a smile.

“My bonnie lass, don’t trouble me, I have no time to spare.
A bee cannot accommodate each worldly woe and care.
For surely you have noticed that we near the end of Spring!
My purpose on this Earth will never halt for such a thing.

My schedule cannot waver lass, for if you look around
Time is of the essence on this green and lavish ground!
The flowers bloom with vibrancy and nature’s full of wealth,
There’s honey to be made and it shall never make itself!

I’ll be about my business for the labourers are few,
The time is ripe for harvest and there’s surely work to do!
So utilise your days and do take care my bonnie lass,
Now be about your business for this season too shall pass.”

With that, I watched him hurry off to go and earn his living,
Unswerving in his call to use the time that he’d been given.
His parting words had left me with a truth so clear to see;
To faithfully redeem the time, like Mr Honey Bee.

Matthew 9:36-38
“But when He saw the multitudes, He was moved with compassion for them, because they were weary and scattered, like sheep having no shepherd.  Then He said to His disciples, “The harvest truly is plentiful, but the labourers are few.  Therefore pray the Lord of the harvest to send out labourers into His harvest.””

1 Corinthians 12:4-5
“There are diversities of gifts, but the same Spirit.  There are differences of ministries, but the same Lord. And there are diversities of activities, but it is the same God who works all in all.”

Ephesians 5:15-17
“See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise, redeeming the time, because the days are evil. Therefore do not be unwise, but understand what the will of the Lord is.”

Colossians 4:2-6
“Continue earnestly in prayer, being vigilant in it with thanksgiving; meanwhile praying also for us, that God would open to us a door for the word, to speak the mystery of Christ, for which I am also in chains, that I may make it manifest, as I ought to speak. Walk in wisdom toward those who are outside, redeeming the time. Let your speech always be with grace, seasoned with salt, that you may know how you ought to answer each one.”

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