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Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Principle 26: Eat honey

Honey in scripture often is used to describe all that is sweet and pleasing - both in the natural and spiritual sense.  Therefore, when scripture declares we should eat honey, it is saying we should pursue those things which will bring delight and satisfaction to our spiritual man.  There are definitely some things which are better to pursue than others - especially as it applies to being "built up", encouraged, or finding peace.  These are the things God wants us to become "acquainted" with in our daily "intake".  It is important to note that honey in the Old Testament region of Palestine was not harvested from bee farms, but rather had to be dug out of crevices in the rocks and the hollow of trees.  As such, we receive a word picture of having to "mine" the bountiful goodness God has prepared for us.  It requires some effort on our part, but it well worth the investment!

Eat honey, dear child—it’s good for you—and delicacies that melt in your mouth.  Likewise knowledge, and wisdom for your soul—get that and your future’s secured, your hope is on solid rock.  (Proverbs 24:13-14 MSG)

It is also a word picture of the abundance of all the goodness God has in store for us.  In Palestine, the bees were abundant - no hive was ever abandoned - it was always active and a place of provision.  The same is true of God's grace, love, and goodness toward us - it is always active and a place of provision.  In case you didn't know this, the bees found in the Syrian deserts and hill country are some of the hardiest bees and are often "imported" by other bee keepers around the world to assist in developing a thriving hive population among their bees.  This also speaks to us of the "hardiness" of what God provides to us - it is substantial and able to multiply.

The instruction is to "eat" - consume, take in, make it nourishment.  We can have all kinds of food at our disposal, but until we take it into our bodies, it has little potential of assisting us in anyway.  The intention of the food is to feed - to bring nourishment.  To simply look at it, and simply consider it as nicely colored or presented, is to shun the very purpose of the food.  We have to exercise a little effort to get the food into our bodies, don't we?  It just doesn't "feed us" on its own.  We need to take the fork to our mouths in order to ingest it.  The same is true of all God has for us in his Word and those times of quiet repose before him.  It takes some effort, but once we take the first step, he promises the intake of all he provides will be like delicacies in our mouths.

Knowledge and wisdom for our soul is like the "honey" of the desert - it is pleasant, nourishing, and packed with all we need to help us along a long journey.  In Palestine, honey was a good source of energy.  Lack energy in your life?  Take in a little more of the Word, let it sink in and see if you don't feel energized with the refreshing intake.  Even when the Word corrects something which we may not have been willing to deal with, it brings refreshing.  A thunderstorm with torrential rainfalls will purge the earth of the top layers of dirt, uncovering the hidden and bringing it new life.  God's words may correct - uncovering a little of the dirt, but exposing the newness underneath just burgeoning to grow forth.  The word applied will bring newness of growth - this we can count upon just as much as the bees will return to the hive to make honey over and over again.  Their purpose is to make the honey!

We can have all kinds of "good stuff" at our disposal, but until we avail ourselves of the good stuff hidden in the crevices and hollows of the trees, we will never really experience all God has for us!  Just sayin!