Psalms from the Hive
by Jeannie Saum, with apologies to King David
by Rebekah Saum
“Let me tell you ’bout the birds and the bees
And the flowers and the trees
And the moon, up above,
And a thing called love…”
What I’m gonna tell you,
Is not from a song,
But from a Book of Love
Penned long ago.
Something I know in my heart to be true,
About the birds and the bees
And me and you.
Corny, I, know, but it says what I want it to say, as an introduction to what I am about to share. I am sitting at my computer at 7:00 AM on a Tuesday morning. So, what’s the big deal? I AM RETIRED! I don’t need to be up at 7:00 AM! I had forgotten that 7:00 AM even existed! But here I sit, fortifications of coffee and hot cream of wheat beside me, feeling convicted to write something I know was placed on my heart to share.
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by Rebekah Saum
This entry is going to be different from most I write. While it is marginally about the bees, I am writing for a different purpose than usual, and about a subject, a truth that makes some uncomfortable. I am giving you permission right here, to stop reading this entry, now or at any time through it. I promise, I will still love you, if I know you and if I don’t know you, I won’t hold it against you! Now I am a first-born, left brained, bossy princess daughter, who often thinks she knows everything, can figure out or fix anything and is (almost) always right. ( And just realized, raised by not one, but TWO oldest child, bossy parents who alternately were know-it-all, information junky , analyze everything, fix anything, brilliant people . – Double Whammy!) So not cramming this down your throat might seem unusual. But I am also an insecure, people-pleasing, family fixer, child of an alcoholic, who doesn’t really want to offend anyone and desperately wants you to like me! So I am going out on a limb, here, by sharing this and by giving you permission to reject, dismiss or disagree, up front. I don’t really want to share what I believe has been revealed to me, but I am compelled. And I know that the Creator of the birds and the bees, the universe – my God – who has created me in his image; gives me, and all of his creation, that free will to accept and know; or disagree, dismiss and reject the truth. So I am just passing that permission on to you. But I am getting ahead of myself, a bit.
I was wakened from a sound sleep at 6:15 this morning by a dream, and (yes, I confess) a night-sweat, and the un-ignorable urge to go to the bathroom! :) ). TMI? Sorry, I tend to be a little casual and overly transparent about my reality! As usual, I can’t remember most of what my dream was about, but I do remember that I was in some kind of life or death crisis and sharing with another person, what was on my heart about life and death. Once I got back in bed, I lay there, in that half in-half-out state of dreaming; sort of analyzing my dream, thinking about what I was thinking, going over it and over it in my head. Our incredible brain can be very strange…
After laying there for about 30 minutes in this state of rambling and confusion, I had a sudden moment of clarity: I KNEW I had been given an answer to a prayer I had been praying for years. It didn’t come from my intellectual study, or my brilliance, or my work, or my efforts. I JUST KNEW! It was a gift. And needed to get up and write it down, right away, before it slipped away. So here I sit…praying for my God’s wisdom, clarity, and truth and praying I don’t offend those I love.
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I am a God believer, a Christ’s-sacrifice-saved believer, an imperfect sinner, seeking Holy Spirit- giving- me- daily-strength believer. I wasn’t always so. I was raised in the 60’s, on evolution, agnosticism, war strategy( (military brat) and war protests, rock and roll, and flower power. I thought Jesus Freaks were over-the-top weird. Yet I had an urge to go to church as a child, dragged my mother there and asked to be baptized, not really knowing or understanding why. As a teen, I viewed my Christian “saved” friends as opinionated and pushy and brushed their sharings aside. Oddly, it was years later, in an Al-Anon meeting, with its God-inspired, collective wisdom, that I first really believed and understood. (What God has planted by one, will be watered by others) Sitting in a room of others trying to make meaning out of the struggles of life, my mind and heart were suddenly filled with the KNOWING that there was a “higher power”, GOD, who was in control of my life, who created me, who loved me, who was watching over me, who had a purpose for me and all the things that had and would happen to me. He was infinitely bigger, wiser, more powerful than this little me. And He was infinitely more capable of taking care of me and those that I loved, than I was. An indescribable sense of peace, relief and trust washed over me, and I KNEW, THAT I KNEW, THAT I KNEW that this was true. This KNOWING didn’t come from my own strength or brilliance or any thing I did. It was a gift – from a holy, just, all-powerful, all-wise GOD of the universe.
I latched on to Romans 8:28 as my “life verse” from that moment and struggle daily, in the ups and downs of life, to practice and believe that “All things work for good to them that love the Lord and are called according to his purpose.” I don’t do it perfectly or even well, most days. But I pray each day, that God will teach me what I need to know and use the good things and bad things that life sends my way, to teach me his truths and mold me more into his image through them. I have come to know that his ways are not our ways and the mind of God cannot be understood, he is so far above us. But he loves us, wants good for us, and can bring blessings out of tragedies to make us more holy like he is – just like he gives us the blessing of spending eternal life with him, through the tragic sacrifice of his only son, Jesus. We get out of jail free, relieved of our sin-sentence, because Jesus took our punishment, paid our fine, did our time and suffered our death penalty! A just and holy God, made a way that was previously impossible, for us to be free of our sin-debt, pure and righteous enough to stand in his presence, and to live eternally basking in his holiness and peace. You may not understand this, but I hope someday you will. In fact you will probably think that I am nuts, and stop here. I hope someday But that is a chance I am compelled to take.
Through the years in my walking with Jesus, I have prayed for a way to comfortably share my faith, my KNOWING with others – those I know and love, and those I don’t know. I’ve never been comfortable doing this – fearing judgment, rejection and offending someone. Always feeling like I have to see others’ sides to the faith issue, accept that others’ believe there are other ways to God, and do what is politically correct! I have been reluctant and uncomfortable sharing my faith and always marveled at people who could strike up this kind of conversation with a stranger on a plane, without offending. Yet all the while, I knew God asks all of us to spread the Good News about Jesus – the embodiment of his love for us. Early this morning, I think I got my answer.
Through my dream, I realized that what God was asking of me, what just what he had done with me. He didn’t hit me over the head with his truth. He didn’t get mad when I dismissed or disagreed. He just kept putting the truth out there, sending it through; books, and speakers, and churches, and videos and events good and bad, and strangers and his Holy Bible and friends (whom I call the “rescuing Eskimos of life” – but that’s a whole ‘nother story). From this dream, I realized that it is his model of sharing the truth that I need to use. Just put it out there, with the message that this is what I KNOW TO BE TRUE. But knowing that you are free to accept or reject, take or leave, agree or disagree, ponder or dismiss. I will still like and love you, no matter what, just like all those years God loved me while I wandered in the wilderness of confusion and tried to figure it out on my own. God loved me enough to pursue me and risk rejection. I must love God enough to do what he has asked of me. And love you, family, friends and even strangers, enough to risk your rejection. Love you enough to tell you the TRUTH I KNOW because I want you to have the gift I have, the eternal life promised, the purpose of living this life and the peace in your heart that can not be explained.
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I can’t look into a bee hive with all its intricacies and perfection and not believe in a creator GOD. Only an intelligent-beyond-all-we-can-imagine GOD could have created these incredible creatures with their amazing abilities:
to build tiny hexagonal cells all exactly the same;
to make nutritional and healing honey;
to mix up the antimicrobial, healing propolis out of tree resin;
to navigate their environment to find food and resources for their fellow bees;
and to live in a highly organized community where each member has a job to do and works together for the prosperity of all.
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A beautiful, complex building, an architectural wonder, didn’t just design and build it self. It didn’t happen by accident. It was designed by an architect with vision, expertise and brilliance and built by those with intelligence, skill and tenacity.
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by Rebekah Saum
I KNOW that my bees, in all their perfection,complexity and ingenuity were created by GOD, not by happenstance.
So watching and working with the bees validates and confirms what I KNOW to be true:
that GOD created the birds and the bees,
and me and you.
There, I said it and shared it.
And you are free to believe or not.
But I KNOW he is right here waiting for you…
15 For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.
4 The word of the Lord came to me, saying,
5 “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart;
I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.”
6 “Alas, Sovereign Lord,” I said, “I do not know how to speak; I am too young.”
7 But the Lord said to me, “Do not say, ‘I am too young.’ You must go to everyone I send you to and say whatever I command you.
8 Do not be afraid of them, for I am with you and will rescue you,” declares the Lord.