A lesson from ants

[notice]Musings around children’s ministry. Reflections on week 4 of 10 weeks teaching stint.[/notice]

Four things on earth are small,
    yet they are extremely wise:
25 Ants are creatures of little strength,
    yet they store up their food in the summer;

(Proverbs 30:24-25)

It’s been a quiet week in the office with me buried in administrative work. However, members of our team did take some time to join Project Hope UK in a local community, playing games with children during the school holiday.  And in Parys, Reaching a Generation launched a new model of International Leadership Academy this week, where churches are being trained on how to run leadership academies in their communities for promising students. In all the excitement I found myself wishing I could break out of the office and go and join the team on the frontlines. This didn’t happen, but I did learn a lesson from my work…

Part of the administrative work I’ve been busy with has been reading through our chaplains’ workbooks and providing feedback. One of the books that we use in our Chaplaincy programme is Battlefield of the Mind by Joyce Meyer.  Many of our chaplains are around the same point in the programme so I found myself reading various responses to the same questions about aspects of Battlefield of the Mind. One of the questions was, “What can we learn from the ant?”

My favourite answer was that, “The ant does what he is supposed to do without an overseer.  Likewise we should meet our responsibilities without being watched.  The ant teaches us to be diligent and responsible”. I thought that was a mature answer, and just as I contemplated it my mind started to wander and I imagined the ants I battled with earlier this year (in my home).  I recalled what it was like having these hundreds of ants going about their business; unaware that they were affecting me or that I was watching them (even plotting to murder them).  It’s fascinating really, they all work together to achieve one purpose. Ants have such a sense of their responsibility and how their part affects the whole. It’s a lot like Paul saying that we’re all members of one body and that each part has a function within the body. But there is another aspect to it too, the chaplain in her answer alluded to the fact that we have to accept our responsibility and do it.

Sometimes we don’t always want to do everything that we’re given to do…but if we accept a responsibility of any kind…we need to see it through. For me, that is a bitter pill to swallow as I’m not always diligent in the tasks that I do. My only consolation is that in this particular chapter of Battlefield of the Mind, Joyce Meyer encourages the reader that this takes time and that s/he shouldn’t give up. I’ll say it again, “if you don’t quit, you win!”

One Comment

  1. Thank you this was most interesting.

    Piperjames