“Go to the ant, you sluggard; consider its ways and be wise!” – Proverbs 6:6 (NIV).
In spite of its being one of the smallest creatures there is, the ant is one of the most industrious. Ant colonies are all over the world boasting spectacular anthills. Though a queen ant may live for decades the average worker and soldier ants only lasts for months at most. However, there life span is an amazing time of productivity with every hour lived with a certain focus.
For this reason, scripture has advised us to go to the ant and observe it. “It has no commander, no overseer or ruler, yet it stores its provisions in summer and gathers its food at harvest” (verse 7-8). This implies self motivation and planning to survive through scarcity. “How long will you lie there, you sluggard? When will you get up from your sleep? A little sleep, a little slumber, a little folding of the hands to rest and poverty will come on you like a thief and scarcity like an armed man” (verse 9- 11). This implies a work ethic and answers the great question of our time, why there is so much poverty around us?
There are many theories one would find advanced why some nations are poor as others are rich. There could be many smart reasons given but none would deny that wherever we find prosperous communities hard work is part of such societies. The Netherlands with just a 17 million population is the seventeenth richest nation in the world. Their success has not come the easy way. The truth is that with a third of their country below sea level a quarter of Netherlands has been reclaimed from the sea. It takes a lot of work to achieve such a bold feat.
The Apostle Paul wrote to the church in Thessalonica, “Even while we were with you, we gave you this command: “Those unwilling to work will not get to eat” (2 Thessalonians 3:20). Prosperity does not come by chasing fantasies. Rather we must be diligent as the ant. For just as it is written of the noble wife, “She watches over the affairs of her household and does not eat the bread of idleness” (Proverbs 31: 27).
Prayer for today: Lord Father God of creation, as I thank you for the gift of life, today I pray that I may use every single moment to glorify and worship you through work and experience your prosperity from the fruits of my labour.