The bee is more honored than other animals, not because she labors, but because she labors for others.

~ John Chyrsostom

05-02-10 © boryak, courtesy of iStockphoto

Growing up in the rural South, my brothers and I lived outdoors. The Atari games were around, but we didn’t own one. Instead, we ran around shirtless and barefoot in the yard wearing cut-off jeans.

We’d find ways to entertain ourselves for hours: swimming in the creek, playing any kind of ball we could, riding bikes… We were adventurers, exploring all of nature that we could in our little world.

It was a promised land to us, like one flowing with milk and honey.

  • We never wanted to go inside the house.

That was boring. Do you hear me? B-O-R-R-R-I-N-G!

For food, we scavenged off the land, picking, berries, apples, muscadines, quince, and plums. We gulped warm water from a hose, or cooler refreshment from a well – depending on whose house we thirsted at.

  • One of our favorite pastimes was collecting bees.

My grandparents’ property had large blooming plants – hydrangeas, snowball bushes, and the like. Their yard attracted bees like no other; theirs was a great hunting ground for us, the miniature beekeepers.

  • We’d make homes for our prized captures.

We transformed old Golden Eagle Syrup jars into glass menageries by punching holes in the tops. We furnished them with flowers and old honeycombs. And we bumbled around with our makeshift hives for the rest of the day.

  • At dusk, we’d have to let the bees get back to work.

Our grandparents made us release them so the honey-makers could go home by the light of the honey moon.

I never was sure that they made us let the buzzers go for noble reasons. I believed it was more to prevent us from bringing them into the house, wanting to avoid an angry stinger’s fury.

God created the bees to help mankind produce crops – even more to make the honey we poured on Grandma’s homemade buttered biscuits. That’s why bees constantly buzzed around. They were hard at work to fulfill God’s call on their lives. And part of their work helped us.

  • There’s no such thing as a lazy bee.

These insects never stopped fulfilling what God created them to do.

Now, as I watch them zip from one flower to another, I have to ask myself if I am busy doing what God’s called me to do. Do I worship God through serving others, or am I just busy as a bee hoarding my own honey?


And whatever you do, in word or in deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him.

~ Colossians 3:17, HCSB


Do our lives show we are busy as bee-lievers?