The ways of the ant not only serve to illustrate the virtues of an energetic and productive life, but also show us the sad result of taking pleasure in things that are self-defeating and detrimental to others. Observers have noted that certain kinds of ants have a passion for the sweet, glandular substance given off by the caterpillar of a large blue butterfly. They can become so “addicted” to it that they even seek out “the supplier” and carry him to their nest with delight. But they unwittingly bring home an enemy in disguise, for the caterpillar gorges himself exclusively on ant larva. Usually such a threat to the colony would be repelled with great vigor, but the adults enjoy the tasty secretions of their “guest” so much that they are oblivious of the fact that their young are being devoured in the process.

Similarly, the child of God can become absorbed in practices that are inherently dangerous to his own Christian experience and ultimately will affect the lives of others.

 

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