Thursday, April 23, 2009

Lessons in Faith...

I was having a hard time sleeping the other night and God put it on my heart to read a little. I've been amassing a collection of books from the thrift store for awhile and until that night I hadn't made time to read any of them.

He led to me one about stories from the heart. This books contains snippets from various speakers and authors, some famous and some not so. I flipped to the section on Motivation.

I read the entire section and while all the stories resonated with me, two jumped out at me. One came back to me today.


I volunteer for a local senior program in various capacities, one of which allows me to visit a client in their home and spend an hour with them once a week. I've recently been assigned a new person. We instantly clicked the first time we met. Today was our third visit.

While we discuss many things, all of our conversations come back to God. That's perfectly fine with me. He's the reason that I have time to spend with her after all! She is very insightful. She has had a trying time for that last several years, healthwise, which leads to learning faithwise.

Today, as we were walking the neighborhood, she asked a great question -

"If God has a part to do and I have a part to do, how do I know which part is mine?"

An answer instantly popped into my head.

"All of it is God's part. We're just His workers."

She hesitated briefly and asked her question again, this time stressing,

"Right but, what is MY PART? How do I know what I'm supposed to be doing and what I need to take care of?"

My answer again was,

"It's ALL God's. Our job is to be open to His will and do what He bids us to do. That's it! There is nothing else."

Her response,

"Right but, I can't just sit around waiting on God to take care of everything."

"I didn't mean sit around and do nothing. I just mean that it's our "job" to live our life in a way that whenever God calls us to assist Him, we do. Our job is to listen and follow the path that He sets before us."

Then this analogy came to me.

God is the Queen Bee. The Queen Bee is in charge of the hive. Wherever the Queen lands is where the hive is built. Her worker bees build the hive and wait for her to fill it with eggs. Once she has planted the "seeds" in the hive, the workers tend the eggs, feeding them and caring for them through the larva stage and until they're ready to become active members of the hive.

Worker bees serve. That's their only purpose in life. They take care of the hive and all of it's contents because the Queen needs them to do this work. She can't lay the eggs and tend to all of the work in a hive by herself and have the colony survive and thrive.

God put us here to work for Him, to tend His treasures and help grow and sustain His colony. That is our "job", our purpose in life. All of the rest is moot. When God calls us to serve, we should serve, because He asked. Without God the entire hive is in danger of dying off.

My new friend thought about that and digested it. When we arrived back at her home she talked to me about a lack of faith. What she got out of my thoughts was that she had a lack of faith where God was concerned. She prays many times a day, reads the bible regularly, and has been a Christian for well over 30 years. How on earth could she have a "lack of faith"?

Into my head pops one of the stories I'd read a few days ago. I read it. I liked it. I thought I'd understood it, until that moment. This is a synopsis of the story -

There was a pastor of a church in an area that was having a severe drought. There were hundreds of parishioners in his flock. Many were farmers and in desperate need of rain. The pastor decided to hold a special prayer meeting that coming week to pray for rain.

Preparations were made and the event was on schedule. The day arrived and the pastor was milling around the grounds. They had decided to hold the event outside and all of the chairs were set up and waiting. Something wasn't quite right. He couldn't put his finger on it.

People began arriving. They had a good turn out. Still, something was wrong. About that time the pastor noticed a little girl heading his way. He noticed her because she was carrying a large red umbrella. A smile came to his face. He began to look around at the crowd and the chairs. He knew exactly what was wrong.

No one ordered a tent. No one else brought an umbrella. You see, these people were gathering for a good reason. They were praying for a good reason. But, only the little girl had the faith that God would answer.

Two weeks ago I would've answered that question differently. These past few weeks have been a test in my faith. How far will I go? How far does my faith carry me? Do I fully trust in God to care for me when I'm on His missions?

I guess I haven't. I mean, I do at times but, when I'm cutting it close I try to take over the reigns and take control of the situation myself. The reigns aren't mine, they're God's.

I can go to church every Sunday, attend Bible study, volunteer at church, and memorize every line in the bible but, unless I open myself to His will and have faith in Him to guide my path I'm no better off.

Today, I have faith that God will answer and whatever answer He gives me will be the right one for my life. So, will you be the pastor or the little girl with the umbrella?


Thomas said...

Go look up: Matthew 17:20


Your friend said: "Right but, what is MY PART? How do I know what I'm supposed to be doing and what I need to take care of?"

It made me think of the mustard seed being all the faith that a person needed. Then I got to thinking if God and I were up to something, it would help a human out to know what the big guy thought we were up to. But then I thought, maybe the big guy didn't want me to know what we were up to and have it all be a surprise. Isn't that was each day is ... "Surprise, you woke up alive!"

Back to the point: if we're going to get anything done, we need a plan. So if you don't have that... just wake up and get moving any direction and if you're not going in the right direction God will trip you, to stop you.

Oh yeah, God will trip you. God's got a sense of humor now. He dreamt me up!

mustard seed.

resee - funny that my word verification is resee, when I'm talking mustard seed. hmmm, faith of a resee's cup. Dear Jesus, can we change how Matthew 17:20 reads, just a tad?

Thomas said...

Okay - I tried to not comment on this, but my snarky is motivated.

God is the Queen Bee? *giggles - alot!!!*

You do know I'm gay right?
*still giggles*

All the wrong visual images are flashing through my head. I tried to click away and not comment, but I just had to let you know that, THAT one comment made my day.

haffi - 50% of one piece of taffy candy with 50% the flavor. *warning* this is not a diet substitute as it contains 300% more fat grams than the original.

Thumperdd said...


As always, you're spot on. In our discussion today, we also chatted about how God shows you the path He wants you to take. Our experience was that He constantly lays the same thing on your plate. You know - it's in the mailbox, on the TV, coming up in random conversations, etc... He just keeps throwing it at you until you wake up and say "Ok, ok. I get it. I'll do it!"

You're funny about the Queen bee. I never thought of it that way! Actually, my Mom has a plaque on the wall about God being a woman. After I typed that part of the post up I briefly thought that a feminist would enjoy that comparison, but not a gay man. Thanks for shedding another ray of light on that...

Danita ;-)

Splendid Little Stars said...

I can go to church every Sunday, attend Bible study, volunteer at church, and memorize every line in the bible but, unless I open myself to His will and have faith in Him to guide my path I'm no better off.
like the Queen Bee analogy.
Sometimes it is not absolutely clear what path to take, what part to play. But if one just starts walking, God will do the guiding. And yes, I do believe he likes the surprise aspect.
I am goiing to share your pozt with others.

Splendid Little Stars said...

I told you I was sharing this. Here's a response from a friend:

Very well said!!!! Thank you for sharing it!!!

Thumperdd said...

Hey, Splendid!

So glad you enjoyed this post and wanted to share it. If anything I say touches someones heart I've done a good thing. Do you ever have those moments when you wonder if things that occur to you make sense to others? Sometimes what sounds good in one moment can't be vocalized again. I'm greatly pleased when it comes across as you originally meant it!