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Lessons from Nature: Go to the Ant.

Updated: Jun 8

After a long, extended dry season, everyone was praying for rain, but it just wasn’t coming. Then one morning, I noticed sugar ants in front of our house shifting their eggs and supplies to safety. Immediately, I remembered that scripture says, “they gather their food in summer” (Proverbs 6:6-8). So I thought, “Summer is coming to an end. Could it be that rain is around the corner?” I shared those words on social media. To my surprise, in less than 48 hours, the first rain of the season poured. Wow!

I was blown away by the accuracy of the ants. I noticed with awe how scripture is as true today as it was when it was inspired. That’s when I was reminded that we can learn from nature all around us if we follow the leading of scripture. Well, let's go to the ant and see what we can learn.

Go to the ant, you sluggard; consider its ways and be wise! It has no commander, no overseer or ruler, yet it stores its provisions in summer and gathers its food at harvest.” (Proverbs 6:6-8).

No Commander

Ants do not have commanders. They advance against their enemies or gather food together. Each ant is one among equals. They fight together. Unlike human society that thrives on good leadership, ants don’t need that because they don’t have leaders. They are self-motivated and self-led. John Maxwell, the leadership guru, expresses how serious leadership is when he says, “everything rises and falls on leadership.” And he’s right; leadership is a serious matter! But ants thrive without a commander or a leader for that matter.

A sluggard should learn from this self-motivation and self-leadership to avoid laziness that leads to poverty.

No Supervisor

Ants have no overseers or supervisors. An ant doesn’t have anyone to impress. Its work, its survival, and its life depend on it. So, they work hard to survive. Remember the ants I told you about earlier? They had to shift their eggs and supplies in time or everything would have been destroyed by the rain. For them, wisdom is a life-and-death situation. If you don’t have it, you cannot survive beyond a season. Here, a sluggard can learn to treasure wisdom and to work unsupervised because, when it comes to survival, there’s no one to impress. It’s a life-and-death situation.

No Ruler

Ants live in a no-president country, in a no-king kingdom. They are one among equals. They don’t work to climb the social ladder because there are no social ladders to be climbed. To put it simply, if we work like the ants, gathering our food in summer, we will have food. But if we become sluggards and fold our hands, we’ll die of poverty. Period!

Look and Be Wise

With no Commander, no Supervisor, and no Ruler, what exactly keeps ants motivated and working? Purpose. I believe they are motivated by purpose. Ants are created to be ants. When they do that, they inspire us to be wise. Similarly, humans were created to “dominate” (Genesis 1:26). Therefore, the sluggard should get out of his bed not because there’s a commander ordering him, not because there’s a supervisor shouting “Deadline!” and not because there is a tyrant ruler executing sluggards, but because he was not created a sluggard but a creative co-creator with God. His creativity and co-creator abilities are released when he works. Look at the ant and be wise.

What wisdom have you learned from the ants? If you’ve learned some truth, please share a comment. Don’t miss our next Lessons from Nature when we look at the birds of the air.

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