To Gather Nectar

I recently met with a remarkable academic/career counselor at my college. She put her heart into her work and surprised me with how much she cared for the students she came in contact with.

Though her words were wise and profound, it wasn’t what she said that left me with so much revelation. I chewed over her words in prayer and soon found God’s word spoken to me in between hers.

“Unless the Lord builds the house, those who build it labor in vain. Unless the Lord watches over the city, the watchman stays awake in vain.” Psalm 127:1

I don’t remember when I first decided I wanted to major in psychology other than how I’d grown up as a kid constantly over-analyzing mine and others’ philosophies. Beyond my own niche, it felt secure to align with a money-making culture.

It even upheld with my unquenchable desire to measure up to highly successful family members. I’ve grown up with love and admiration for my family with masters, doctorates, dual majors, in engineering, psychology, accounting, research education, to name a few. I even have a wonderful uncle, head of University of Arizona’s Department of Education Policies, with more lengthy accreditation and awards.

The pressure had always been high to answer to family and myself about what my academic and career goals were. This goes to say that their hearts are hugely radiant and I’m free from any resentment. With maturity and God’s grace, I grew to view their pressure and achievement less of a cut-throat challenge but more their immense care for me.

Sitting across the desk of this passionate academic counselor, I admitted defeat. My heart wasn’t in psychology, and I didn’t know what to do anymore.

My ideas and words came out as a floundering fish, “I think I’ll go back to what I originally started college for, computer technology or graphic design! There’s always a need in tech… Or even marketing… Maybe I’ll go into accounting, I like organizing and planning…”

She must’ve thought I was insane. But she was so graceful to advise I keep, “dabbling in my passions and exploring what I enjoy the most.”

French being her primary language, she got stuck on the English word, “dabble” and tried to come up with something more fitting. I’ll never forget the conversation. It’s like she helped me recognize my true purpose and passion without mentioning it, because we went on to discuss the best word choice for 20 minutes.

Engaging in debate over one silly word, ignited a spark in me. Sitting in that office chair, my head went to work in accordance with my heart to find the solution. An experience of God bringing me to see my true purpose as a writer and English major.

“I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you.” John 15:15

The academic counselor concluded there were no adequate English words to describe what she was trying to say in French, “butiner“. She was metaphorically proposing me as a butterfly or bird going flower to flower in search for my niche, gathering grains of nectar and knowledge along the way.

Butiner: (verb transitive) to gather, to glean; (verb intransitive) to gather nectar and pollen, surf.

I could study words for the rest of my life. It’s a captivating work of art to craft them into sentences that form stories and messages to inspire a positively transformed world for God’s glory.

With this new name He’s given me, the lie that a writing career makes no money, can just fall beneath His feet.

“My steps have held to your paths;

my feet have not stumbled.

I call on you, my God, for you will answer me;

turn your ear to me and hear my prayer.

Show me the wonders of your great love,

you who save by your right hand

those who take refuge in you from their foes.”

Psalm 17:5-7

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