I was probably around 10 years old when I saw A Bug’s Life. It quickly became my favorite! And it totally brought Proverbs 6:6 to life. “Go to the ant, thou sluggard! Consider their ways and be wise.” I had learned that verse with my mom several years prior to seeing the movie. I didn’t really understand it, but my five-year-old self really liked the word sluggard for some reason. It’s just a fun word!
When I saw A Bug’s Life, those grasshoppers took on the role of sluggards. They didn’t think about the future. They adopted the #yolo mindset. They relied on other people (ants) to make things happen for them. The ants, on the other hand, were proactive, prioritizing long term sustainability over constantly living it up in the moment.
There are plenty of other places in the Bible where God reiterates the same sentiment. He essentially tells us in Proverbs 24:27 to get off of our butts and get our fields ready. He goes to great lengths detailing how Joseph stashes a chunk of Egypt’s bumper crop and preserves the whole region when times weren’t so rosy.
Lately, I’ve realized that a mindset of trying to be proactive (totally Biblical) can quickly segue into worry (not Biblical). Have you ever had times when your efforts to “prepare your fields” have generated doubts and fears about the future? We’ve all been there.
So where does it all go wrong?
Somewhere along the way, we forget who makes it rain. It’s God, folks. In Psalm 84, David talks about the blessings that come to men of faith who realize their strength comes from the Lord. “Who passing through the valley of Baca make it a well; the rain also filleth the pools.” If you boil this down to the simplest of terms, David says their faith digs the well, but God sends down the rain to fill it. Wow.
In Matthew 6, Jesus addresses those with a tendency to worry. He reminds God’s children that if he can feed the birds and clothe the grass, he is totally willing and able to take care of our every need. He concludes the chapter by telling us that we should take it one day at a time, not worrying about tomorrow.
So which is it?
Should we be like the ant, thinking ahead and setting ourselves up for long term success? Or should we take it one day at a time, not worrying about tomorrow? I think we both know by now that the answer is both. But what a tight rope!
I think the trick is that it actually takes work to surrender it all to God. It takes faith. God gives us faith, but we have to exercise that faith. And exercise is work. Reading our Bibles is work. Following the instructions that God lays out for us in the Bible doesn’t always come naturally. That’s why God equates walking the Christian walk to a straight and narrow path. There are ditches on both sides that are easy to fall into. But if we keep our eyes fixed on Him, God promises to walk with us and hold our hand every step of the way, through the good and the bad. He says his yoke is easy and his burden is light. What an awesome God we serve.
Ben Lord is a junior public relations major & business minor from Fitzgerald, Georgia. He loves servant leadership, storytelling and entrepreneurship. His roles at Berry College as student director of the Berry Enterprises, social media assistant for Berry Admissions and team member at Truett’s Chick-fil-A allow him to channel those passions. In his free time, he enjoys catching up with his five younger siblings and dominating at Monopoly Cheaters Edition.