If you’ve ever been bitten by an insect like a mosquito or an ant, you probably know that you usually can’t tell you’ve been bitten until the deed has already been done. You don’t feel the insect inflicting its worst until it’s too late.
I recently was stung by a bee for the first time ever. As with any other insect bite, I didn’t realize what was happening until I felt a searing pain at the site of the sting. I was driving along in my car with the windows rolled down, blowing off steam, when suddenly in the blink of an eye, I felt a slight pinch that went from zero to OH MY GOSH – WHAT IS THAT!
I reached around behind me and just above the waistband of my pants I ran my hand over the painful spot and felt something which I immediately and forcefully brushed off. Whatever it was flew across the expanse of the car, hit the door and landed on the floorboard. When I was able to take a closer look, I discovered the culprit was a bee and I’d been stung.
Upon closer examination, the site of the sting was very tiny initially – just a minuscule red dot. Over the course of the next few weeks, the minuscule dot grew in size equal in proportion to that of a fifty-cent piece. My spot became a raised, red welt that itched like crazy and became a constant nuisance and continual reminder of my very first bee sting.
Because it took a few weeks for the reminder to diminish I couldn’t help but think I’d actually gotten what I deserved. Right before I left to “blow off steam” I was angry with my husband over something stupid and trivial. I left in a huff rather than sit down and talk with him. As I was driving away from the house I was instantly convicted by the Holy Spirit because of my childish behavior. You could say, I felt the sting of His conviction – literally. Just to make sure I got the message though, I think God sent the bee because the red welt’s presence for weeks afterwards was a daily reminder that I still struggle with my mouth and my attitude.
Sin frequently starts as something tiny – like a random negative thought or an unkind word spoken in anger. Before you realize it, you’re acting on your random negative thought or angry words and suddenly it’s blossomed into something beyond your control.
Sin doesn’t always produce immediate consequences (like in my case), but if we choose to ignore sin and refuse to repent, we will eventually pay for our bad choices. Perhaps it’s a stretch to think God sent a bee to drive home a lesson, but then some of us are more hard-headed than others. Luckily I’ve got a good antibiotic salve in case I’m ever stung again, but more importantly, I’ve got the salve of God’s Holy Word to cover me when I sin.
He who covers his sins will not prosper, But whoever confesses and forsakes them will have mercy. Proverbs 28:13 (NKJV)
Blessings in Christ,