After a sting operation at a few different hives, I found honeybees to be quite fascinating little creatures. Resting only at night because they can’t see in the dark, the bees don’t stop…not even for a second. After emerging from their cells, they immediately begin to climb their way up the corporate ladder, working through each one of the different tasks within the colony. They begin by cleaning out dirty honeycomb, then they move onto feeding the larvae, building honeycomb, they then receive food from foragers, guard the hive, remove the dead, and then they themselves become foragers for nectar, pollen, and water. After a few short weeks, a honeybee worker will have managed to work itself to death.
Don’t get me wrong, work is a great thing. It’s a means of making a living, but following a honeybee’s example might not bee the best idea. Working everyday without a break can lead to destruction. When you don’t take a day off to rest, there comes a point where your job, your career, and your ambitions will consume you. You’ll get so busy and over worked that you will eventually burn yourself out.
One of the Ten Commandments says, “Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.” Sabbath means rest, so we can literally translate this to mean “don’t forget to take a day off!” We weren’t designed to work nonstop every day. Our manufacturer gave us pretty clear instructions to work six days and rest one day, and since we didn’t create ourselves, it’s best to follow the owner’s manual. Anytime you exert something to the max, it will stress and eventually break. According to the story of Genesis, even God took a day off, and then He blessed it. You see, a day off is actually a blessing. It’s God’s gift to us. So what does “keep it holy” mean? Quite simply: to break from the insanity of this world and use that day to focus on God. Isn’t He the One who made us and provided us with all that we have? We should step back and give thanks.
If we don’t rest for one day a week, we take the risk of running our little honeybee wings ragged to the point of falling off. God wants us to use that day to get closer to Him. That’s where you find the real honey. We don’t get it from working ourselves to death or chasing after the desires of the world, we get it from God.
Are you working yourself to death, or are you taking a break to get some honey?