Viewpoint from Helen Farman 01/10/10
Part of the leadership team, Light of Life Baptist Church
Albert Einstein said,” If the bee disappears from the surface of the earth, man would have no more than four years to live.” That’s
an incredible thought considering how tiny a creature the bee is; it’s hard to imagine it being responsible for continued life on the planet!
That mind-blowing thought aside, there are other facts to discover about honeybees which are quite amazing. For instance, did you know that bees need to visit 4 million flowers in order to make 1kg of honey? It also appears that a bee beats its wings 190 times per second, which, to me is mind-boggling
My earliest memories of bees, however, come from my childhood days in Yarmouth when my dad kept two hives of them at the bottom of our garden. The main things I took note of at that time were that bees produced delicious, sticky honey and, if you were not careful, they could give you a very painful sting! I can clearly picture my father in his mega protective clothing, looking rather like a space man, and carrying his ‘smoke puffer’ to calm the bees. But there is so much more to bees than I ever understood then; their lifestyle that has so much to teach us about living in community, with a common purpose, and the benefits that result
Jesus was always reminding people to look at nature and learn the lessons it had to teach. So what do we learn from the bees?
Bees live together in harmony, working together for the good of the whole colony, as they gather nectar to make honey. They care for the young larvae, keep the hive clean and at a comfortable temperature. No room for going it alone or ego trips. They even make the ultimate sacrifice of their lives in defence of the colony, for a bee which stings inevitably dies
There is one last amazing fact about bees; something that happens, not through design or purpose, but of great importance to the planet. Pollination. On the bees’ missions to collect nectar, pollen attaches itself to their bodies and is transferred to another plant. This cross-pollination enables the plant to bear fruit. Much of the food we eat would simply not grow but for the inadvertent work of the bees. Hence, Albert Einstein’s prophecy for mankind should the bee disappear
If we, as humans, learnt the lessons of the bee, is it possible that we could produce something like honey; something sweet, that brings health and wholeness and, at the same time almost inadvertently, give ‘life’ to a hurting world?
Jesus lived and taught this life to the point of sacrifice. He said, ‘You’re blessed when you show people how to co-operate instead of compete or fight. That’s when you discover who you really are, and your place in God’s family.’ He also said, ‘Put your life on the line for your friends’ (Quotes from The Message)
We can make a difference
As someone said to me, ‘Bees do it naturally!’