“Four things on earth are small, yet they are extremely wise: Ants are creatures of little strength, yet they store up their food in the summer…” Proverbs 30:24
What can we learn about these annoying little counter-top-crawling creators? Well, while most of us would probably like to learn the most effective way to kill them… the Bible tells us we can glean wisdom from ants.
I did a little studying, and sure enough, these little ants can teach us a few things. When we are willing to infer spiritual principals from physical traits, the characteristics of the ants will bring conviction and determination.
1. Ants prepare. Ants work. They gather food, build colonies, protect each other, bury their dead, and defend their nests. They plan in advance and stay busy to with meaningful calculated preparations.
2. Ants are strong. They are lightweight insects, yet can carry 50 to even 150 times their own body weight!
3. Ants know their assignment and function. Instinctively, they work in unity and cooperation. It’s so fascinating to learn that there are solider ants, warrior ants, colony builders, drones, and of course… the Queen.
4. Ants are smart. When comparing brain cells to body size; they are the smartest insect on the planet.
5. Ants have two stomachs. One is to digest its own food for nutrients and the other is store food to distribute to others. After an ant returns from gathering, it will regurgitate the stored food to provide for other communal ants.
6. God designed the ant to have “compound eyes.” They can only see what’s very close in front of them. Ants use antennas to sense and feel what is immediately ahead of their short-sighted, limited view. An ant’s daily life requires faith.
7. The ant’s weak body is protected by an exoskeleton. Like we depend on the armor of God, ants also rely on the strength found in the designed covering of the exterior skeleton.
8. Ants are everywhere! They are adaptable and tenacious. This explains why there are over 2,000 unique species. By population count, for every human here is 1.6 million ants!
Amazing insects indeed! (But honestly… Ants are still annoying! But valuable.) Let me, however, challenge you with these observations…
Be like an ant. Carry more than your fair-share. Bear the heavy load because your heavenly Father built you to handle it.
Take the law of reciprocity and discard it. Furthermore, when you carry more than your portion, do so without expecting anything in return. Work hard as apart of a community of believers, not just serving yourself. Labor willingly to serve someone else. When you are able, store up blessings for others as though you are working for your King!
Be like the ant. Be wise. Be smart. Be tenacious. Have vision even when you can’t see. Be led by faith and stay busy. (I didn’t mention this ant fact because it sounds harsh and slightly morbid, but the role of the soldier ant is to kill any unproductive ants that are not working for their queen) There is no retirement in the Kingdom of God. Learn from the ants and be watchful for your daily assignment.
Be like the ant. Be proactively productive and then enjoy stockpiles of provision! “Look at an ant. Watch it closely; let it teach you a thing or two. Nobody has to tell it what to do. All summer it stores up food; at harvest it stockpiles provisions!” Proverbs 6:6-8 MSG
In closing, recognize that this tiny insect is capable of preparation and significant results. It gains strength in numbers, and executes planned prosperity through teamwork. Quite simply, these tiny creatures make what seems impossible a common every day occurrence. If God built an ant to accomplish so much, imagine what He wants to do through you! Consider the ant, dear sister, and begin to dream!
Next time we will study the rock badger and then the lizard! I never knew bugs could be so fun! Stay tuned!