I was sharing this to our Youth service last Saturday so I thought I might share it here as well. In the Book of Proverbs, we were told to follow the ants (Proverbs 6:6-8 which was written by King Solomon). King Solomon was the wisest king and it is interesting to find out why such a wise king asked us to look at the ants. It is also interesting at first to know that the Bible on Proverbs 30:24-25 actually says that the ants “are small” and have “little strength”.
HOWEVER, they are exceedingly/extremely wise! Why? Because they “prepare their food in the summer”.
Let’s observe first what a sluggard normally does and the cause of being a sluggard by reading Proverbs 6:9-11.
A sluggard always says “later, later” or “Just a bit more rest”. “A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to relax”. Procrastinate, that’s what we normally do, don’t we? We always thought that we can do something a bit later. What we often forget, is what comes next for being lazy! Your poverty will come like a robber (something unpredictable, we don’t know when) and your need like an armed man (we won’t be ready for it!). Often we regret what we did in the past: “If only I worked harder…..”, “If only I didn’t go to the party and studied more….” you fill in the blank yourself.
Now, back to Proverbs 6:6-8 and learn from the ants, shall we?
Learning from the Ants
Verse 7: “It has no commander, overseer, or ruler” (NET).
What’s your motivation in studying, working or serving God? Do we do what we do because someone told us to? Because someone keeps on checking on us? Is it your boss in your workplace? Is it your lecture/tutorial attendance form? Or maybe your pastor/leaders at church? The right motivation comes from inside, not from the outside. It doesn’t depend on your situation or whom you are working/serving with. The ants motivation doesn’t come from the Queen (the Queen is there to breed, not to lead the ants). How about your motivation? The purest motivation is always to glorify and please God!
Remember Collosians 3:23? Whatever you are doing, work at it with enthusiasm, as to the Lord and not for people!
 Plan ahead
Verse 8-9: “it prepares its food in the summer; it gathers at the harvest what it will eat” (NET)
The ants always plan ahead. They gather the food preparing for the winter. They work hard during the Summer where food supplies are abundant and enjoying them during the Winter season, when food supplies are scarce.
Do you realize when is your “Summer” and when is your “Winter” season? Do you know when to work/study hard and when you need to rest? Have you planned for the future? Have you done your best in whatever you are doing at the moment? To study hard to get a job in the future; To work hard for your savings; To serve God wholeheartedly for your “heavenly investment?” (Might also want to check out the Parabel of the Dishonest Manager/Unjust Steward on Luke 16:1-15).
Know that whatever you do now will not be in vain no matter how silly or unrelated it may be to you. Maybe you are working part time in a restaurant or maybe you are studying something that you think is unrelated to your course or whatever it may be, God can always make something good out of it. You’ll learn something that you would never have thought before without realizing it!
The ants “prepares” and “gathers”. They are actively seeking for the food. They go out from their nests, their “comfort zone”. How about you? Are you always on your comfort zone, too lazy or too scared to go out, perhaps?
Proverbs 22:13 – The sluggard says, “There is a lion outside! I shall be killed in the streets!”
Are you like that? Too scared to even try something that you haven’t done before? Take the initiative like the ants. There are dangers waiting for them outside their nests, but they still go for the goal. As a Christian, remember that you always have God. Sometimes we are wondering on the valley of darkness, but know that God is always there with you (Psalm 23:4).
When an ant can’t carry a large chunk of food, the others help. All of them together carry the chunk back to the nest. Learn from them! Do whatever you are doing together with others, especially when things get tough! Always know that you are never alone in this world. You are not a loner!
It is important though to find friends who share the same vision/goal as you do. If not, you’ll all stumble together! Find some positive and encouraging friends near you!
Focusing on the goal is very important! The ants focus on one thing: to prepare and gather the food for the Winter season. How focused are you at the moment in doing your responsibility? Don’t look at others (the ants don’t look at other ants when they work) and certainly don’t compare yourself with others!
Find out what makes you lose your focus at this moment. A person? A hobby? A behavior? A thing? Run from it just like Joseph who ran from Potiphar’s wife! Sometimes we thought that we could fight it, but most of the time, we just couldn’t! Simply run from it helps you to focus! If you can’t study at home, go to the library! If Facebook or playing games make you unfocused, stop and run away from your computer!
The ants are persistent! They just never gave up! No matter terrain they are going through, they’ll just keep on carrying the food without ever giving up! How about you? Do you give up easily? Stressed out when bad things happen? Learn from the ants and never give up trying! God always want you to learn when you fail. Keep your hope and keep praying to Him!