BUMBLEBEES...differ from their cousins, the honeybees. While visiting our daughter and grandson in Great Barrington, MA this summer, we were treated to a lot of bumblebees gathering pollen from the beautiful flowers all around her house.
Do yourself a favor and watch this 34-second clip
and listen to the sound. It is intriguing. The high pitch once it started drawing the sweet pollen is very shrill. See, wasn’t that cool! Their beautiful black and yellow coloring has inspired many an artist…not to mention costumes and movies.
My fascination led me to research its purpose. Not sure I ever focused on this over my lifetime. Honeybees are so terribly beneficial; I never stopped to think about the bumblebee. They appear to be our allies and important to our society, especially in relation to the pollination of plant life that gives way to fruits and vegetables. So, that little critter that you just viewed has a significant purpose. And they work hard at it. The queen still controls the show, just like the honeybee. Hey guys, don’t you work overtime to please your queen?
All of us have at one time or another used the phrase, straight as a beeline, or he made a beeline to ‘whatever’. But I would bet the farm that the majority of you do not know where this phrase came from. I didn’t! Since technology has opened so many doors for us to enter, I would’ve never thought of putting a small antenna on the top of a bumblebee to monitor its workday habits.
Okay, the researchers found that the bumblebee flies in a straight line. Even in circumstances where there was a 40-mile/hour crosswind the bee is able to continue on its straight line. Why aren’t we that focused and committed? It seems that we go throughout our day/our lives and when we encounter various storms, they seem to get us off course. I suppose the eyesight of the bumblebee, his antenna, whatever, allows him to go straight to his destination and then straight back home. It appears that when he is in quest of the ‘pollen goodies’, he flies over some tempting venues, but remains undeterred.
And another thing about bumblebees, their body weight and the small size of their wings makes them aerodynamically unfit to fly. The naysayers would claim that it cannot fly, but it does. It defies conventional wisdom and does it anyway.
This reminds me of the scriptures in Matthew 7. Jesus was speaking. “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it” (vss. 13,14 NIV). All of us get distracted. It can simply be temptations, stress, fear, failure and disenchantment, whatever. You need to realize the single most important purpose in your life is to love the Lord and bring glory to him. Throughout your life you will ‘fly over’ a lot of attractive venues that are very tempting, and as the scripture says, they lead to destruction.
In this earthly existence you will battle:
- Against the selfish flesh
- Against the attraction of the world and
- Against the temptations from Satan.
These three enemies can be quite vicious and powerful. The bumblebee doesn’t seem to be affected by any of these. I wonder why you and I are. Maybe, just maybe, your eyes continually drop off the prize and your focus is on that which is temporarily appealing. But the bumblebee stays focused on his purpose, and makes a beeline to and from his destinations, while you and I stray!
The writer of Hebrews has it right. If you’re going to imitate the obedience of the bumblebee, you’ve got to fix our eyes appropriately. “Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses (our beehive), let us throw off everything that hinders (tempting distractions) and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run (fly against all odds) with perseverance (make a beeline) the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes (antennas) on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith….consider him (obey our King) who endured such opposition (strong crosswinds) from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart” (vss. 1,2a,3 NIV).
Make a beeline each day to the Word and prayer, obey what you receive and hear, be abuzz about Jesus and spread the pollen you gather to bring spiritual growth to his kingdom.
Bill C. Dotson