Until more recent times, Mexico was the only producer of vanilla in the world. In the 1520's, a man by the name of Hernán Cortés traveled to Mexico, and found he loved the taste of vanilla. So, he brought some back with him to Europe so others might taste the incredible flavor also. For the next 300 years, the Europeans tried everything they knew, but were never able to produce vanilla.
See, vanilla grows up a tree as a vine, with the vine eventually producing an orchid. In order to make the vanilla bean, the orchid must be pollinated. The problem is, it only blooms one morning per year for pollination. If it isn't pollinated within 12 hours on that day, it withers and is lost from ever producing its fruit. To make things more difficult, a hood-like membrane covers the part of the vanilla orchid which produces pollen. This makes the production of the vanilla bean very difficult.
In 1836, Charles François Antoine Morren traveled down to Mexico to figure out why the Europeans were not able to produce vanilla beans in Europe. As Morren was studying the vanilla orchids, his attention was drawn to a little bee (the Mexican Melipona Bee). This bee landed on the orchid, lifted up the little hood-like membrane, collected pollen, and then flew off to the next flower. This tiny, little bee was pollinating the orchids. After some time, he watched as the orchid began to produce vanilla beans.
To this day, the Mexican Melipona Bee is the only insect that knows how to pollinate the vanilla orchid. This simple fact puts evolution in an extremely difficult position. Without the Mexican Melipona Bee, we simply would not have vanilla today. The bee and the vanilla vine had to be made at the exact same time, with the exact same purpose in mind. Not to mention, this bee had to be given specific information about how to pollinate the vanilla orchid. Again, no other insect in the world knows how to do this. This tiny, little bee had to be made, designed, and purposefully created to pollinate the vanilla orchid, and thus, produce vanilla.
Just like this tiny bee and the unique orchid, so much of our world points to the Creator. And as silly as it may sound to some, even vanilla ice cream proclaims the glory of God. So, the next time you sit down to enjoy a full bowl of vanilla ice cream, remember that you are enjoying a tasty treat which is only possible through the power of our God! Because of the hand of your Creator!