She made sure she had on long pants paired with a long sleeved shirt, no use inviting a wayward bee to sting her. Meg sometimes wondered why she went to all this trouble, maintaining her hives of honeybees. But every time she harvested the waxy honeycomb and the sticky sweet nectar oozed out from the sides, Meg could almost taste the subtle sweetness by simply admiring the bees’ handiwork. And work it was. Meg marveled at how diligently bees labored at their particular task. Like a perfectly run factory, each bee knew instinctively what his job was and he did it. Plain and simple. Which is why my guests and I can reap the benefits of their labor, Meg thought appreciatively.
How I wish I was as certain that my own miniscule vocational contribution made a difference, she sighed. With no immediate family to speak of, Meg was a single woman on her own. An entrepreneur most decidedly, running her own bed and breakfast establishment. But lately Meg had wondered if she was in any way impacting the world around her. True enough, her business was successful and she energetically met the needs of whoever entered her doors. Still, Meg nursed recurring doubts that she might have missed her true calling some years before. At a younger age, Meg had dreamed of becoming a nurse and traveling overseas to work as a missionary. Somewhere along the line, Meg had believed the misconception that to be truly devout Christian, she’d need to live among the destitute.
It was and continued to be, a sore subject with Meg even today. Though she realized her former naiveté and immature thinking, Meg sometimes fell back into this pattern of destructive contemplation. Shaking herself free of her dark thoughts, Meg returned her attention to the task at hand. Opening the lower tray of the hive, Meg reached inside to retrieve a honeycomb full of delectable sweetness. Won’t the twins just love dribbling this over their muffins in the morning, she anticipated happily? And maybe I’ll even join them this time Meg thought with satisfaction. I might even be able to sneak in a short lesson on honeybees if I get them sticky enough, she mused.
“And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what the will of God is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.” Romans 12: 2
I’m almost embarrassed to come before you still rehashing this old, tired business again. I sometimes wonder if I’ll ever learn to stop replaying that worn out song in my head that accuses me of failing to make good on my life. You know how I’ve fought to overcome those archaic misconceptions. It’s not that I haven’t chosen wisely and worked hard all these years. Rather, I allow myself to believe that I’m not serving you, pleasing you even, because my vocation is in business.
But how much more mistaken could I be? You’ve sent me men, women, and children over the years to love and serve. What a higher calling is there? I am honored to provide a small measure of respite to those who are tired and weary. I love opening my heart and home to newcomers in need of rest. Yet from time to time I do fall back into a regretful mood. I think about what could have been. I sometimes envy the travel and adventures of others.
But all in all, my soul is satisfied with the goodness you’ve blessed me with. I thank for the good health I enjoy…and frequently take for granted. I praise you for the joy you’ve implanted in my heart. And I worship you, creator of this fascinating world. Its diversity astounds, surprises, and delights me. Lord, my single hearted prayer is this; never stop reminding me of how you can creatively work your will through my one solitary life.
“Prayer is always an act of faith. It begins with faith, must be carried through in faith, and finished in faith. Every ordinary prayer prayed in the most ordinary way by the most ordinary person is a revolutionary statement of trust.” Mel Lawrenz in Patterns