The Ant Pile

12 11 2014

He was maybe twelve years old. Stuck in a line of traffic, I watched him walk through the grass, shoulders heavy with a backpack and books. He kicked the dirt, watching leaves and sticks go flying. He didn’t seem to be in a hurry. A boy exploring on his way home.

I knew the moment when he found it. The ant pile beckoned with mystery and adventure. His attention became focused, his eyes fixed on the ground. His feet couldn’t quite decide what to do. First, he gently poked a toe right at the edge of the pile. The ants kept on with their work, his curiosity growing. You could see the wheels turning in his mind. His toes began to dig in deeper. He didn’t jump back the second time quite as quickly as he had at first. He got bolder, determined to leave his mark on the ant pile.

I whispered to myself, “Don’t do it, kid.” Finally, he stepped too far. His brave move was replaced by hopping, swatting, shaking, and grimaces. The ants had swarmed up his pant legs. Covered in ants, he endured their bites as he tried frantically to brush them off. Dejected, he looked back at the ants that had left more marks on him than he did on their pile.

What is your ant pile?

“No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with temptation he will also provide a way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.” – 1 Corinthians 10:13

My Jesus Resolution today is to step around the ant pile. I have them. So do you. Places that challenge us to dive in rather than walk away. For a while, it seems brave, daring, risky, and powerful to challenge the ant pile. But in the end, I always get bitten. I end up hurting, wishing I had listened to the voice that said, “Don’t do it, my child.” God has so many wonders in store for me, I don’t need to make up my own. It may be tempting to kick the ant pile, but real adventure comes from walking with God.


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