Sleeping Bees and Other Wonders

It’s a wondrous, glorious world full of promise and hope! It doesn’t take much to see this any time of the year, but in Spring it’s so obvious and breath-taking.

The first thing I do in the morning after the sun rises is take a short walk through our small backyard garden to see what’s changed overnight. Every morning there’s some new sight.

Did you know, for example, that bumblebees sleep in the hollow of gladiola blossoms? Or that they enfold themselves and bundle up on the stalks of liatris and you can see them in the coolness of the early morning before they wake up and start working the blooms for nectar?

Have you gotten really close to an echinacea flower, so close to see the uniformity of pistels in its bloom? It’s like a fireworks display without the noise, but more permanent.

There are tiny microenvironments of wonder and mystery that could keep me occupied for hours, just observing and appreciating. It’s a world of richness and mystery.

Sometimes in my more philosophical moments I wonder why anyone would want to plow it up, pave it over or blow it to smithereens. The reasoning for this escapes me.

And why would anyone who cares about this magnificent world not take an interest in trying to understand why some want to destroy it and take the lives of others? Isn’t it necessary to understand these horrific motivations in order to preserve our own humanity and protect the earth? I mean, isn’t that understanding necessary for survival?

In my view it’s also a great part of what religious faith is about, putting us in touch with the sacred that is within us, within others and within this wondrous world that we are so freely given, so that we may embrace the goodness in creation.

The alternative is to hunker down, bunker up and blow ’em away. Now where’s the joy in that?
I feel sorry for those who take this view. It seems more fearful than realistic, even as it claims that defeating your enemies is the only reasonable alternative.It’s also limiting. It leads people to think anger and force are the most effective ways to resolve conflict. They aren’t.

This view sees the world in the hard light of black and white and tries to convince us life is about absolutes, us and them.

No time for mystery, no truck for trying to understand another point of view. It’s such an impoverished view of the majesty of creation and of our human capacity for creating community.

We inhabit an expanding universe and from a faith perspective it seems to me more plausible that the Creator is continuing to work in the Creation. That calls for an open and expansive attitude toward faith, doesn’t it? The alternative is limiting and restrictive.

Faith is, in part, a challenge to comprehend this creative Spirit and apprehend the presence of the sacred in our lives. This is especially true when the powers and principalities seek to rob us of our humanity, to convince us we are less than sacred beings in a sacred creation.

For Christians it means comprehending what it means to say that God has come into our midst, has embraced us in our humanity and become one with us. And in doing so, said, “Love your enemies.”

You can call it naive’. You can call it groundless optimism. You can even call it dumb. I call it Biblical faith.

I think about these things as I wait for the bees to wake up and stir in the dawn’s early light.

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