In the early part of my life our family lived in Florida. In case you did not know, ants have pretty much made their headquarters in Florida. They are everywhere.
When I was around 6-8 years old I was fascinated with the little guys. I would stumble upon an ant hill in the yard and would stop to watch them for minutes at a time. Their small size was amazing to me. How could a creature so small operate in a world so big?
In this particular observation, the ants had found a cheese-it laying on the side walk. I observed as they had two lines marching; one going to the food and one returning to the hill. Now, the cheese-it was much larger than any one of the ants. Their tactical plan was genius. Break off pieces and carry them back to the hill.
The ants are pretty smart, at least I think. Had I been taking a piece of this cracker, I would have grabbed a small comfortable piece, nothing to strenuous, just enough to keep the flow moving. But these ants were taking pieces much larger than their body. I later found out that ants can lift up to 20 times their own weight! In practical terms, if a second grader was a strong as an ant, he could lift up an average car.
Another fact that I found out was that ants (with the exemption of the queen ant) have a life expectancy of only 45-60 days. At the most an ant will live for two months. Two months!
By the end of two months these ants will have built multiple hills, created an incredible work flow, and saved enough food to last the colony through the winter. Some of these ants spend their whole life preparing for someone else’s well-being!
In case that didn’t strike a note with you; some of these ants spent their whole life working, so that another ant’s life could be great.
They invested in something that they will never see come to pass. They will die knowing how their work could impact others but they will never know how it impacted others.
Two things that we can learn from ants are:
- Life will bring heavy burdens
- Those burdens are worth it because it’s not about me…it’s about you.
Because the first ant bore the burden, it was able to teach the others to bear the burden! When you’ve carried a burden, rest assured that one day you will use what you’ve learned to help a friend carry the burden for themselves.
Next time you face a challenge, don’t approach it negatively, but rather like an ant.
P.B. (Post Blog)
Ants don’t worry. They may get knocked off course, but they do not spend their time evaluating the “what if’s” of life.
What if I get stepped on? What if it begins to rain? What if lose my way in the grass? They simply do not care. Now, they are very much aware of their surroundings but they do not tear themselves apart questioning the what if’s.
Be aware. Don’t worry.