Psalm 8:6-9 “You made him ruler over the works of Your hands; You put everything under his feet: all flocks and herds, and the beasts of the field, the birds of the air, and the fish of the sea, all that swim the paths of the seas. O Lord, our Lord, how majestic is Your name in all the earth!”
There was a perfect balance of cool breeze running by me as the sun warmed my skin. We were spending a few days at my mom’s place in Brenham, Texas and there were chores to be completed. I jumped on the mower to clean up a couple of acres and enjoyed the alone time in nature to think. The bluebonnets were about to make their debut so this would be the only time to cut the entire area. As I surveyed the yard, I saw several black mounds rising above the ground. I could not believe how many were in front of me and I thought to myself, “Well this will be fun-mowing ‘em down!” FIRE ANT HILLS. If you are not familiar with this creature, may I enlighten you? In the south, this little booger has been a menace to both country and suburban folk. It is astounding where they can build their mounds and mount stealth-like attacks on the innocent. I can’t count how many times I have been stung by this little pest and I looked forward to creating havoc on their homes. As the mower lurched to the first settlement, I silently asked the question, “God, why fire ants? I can’t see any benefit from the existence of these mean little creatures which bring pain and anguish to those in their destructive path. “ As I was running over the fourth mound, I heard a whisper, “Learn about them”.
A few days later, I started researching fire ants on the internet. I learned how they were introduced to this country back in the 1930’s from South America through the port in Mobile, Alabama and have spread over 260 million acres of land and in nine states! The fire ants continue to move westward and will eventually make it to California[i]. In the area of Brenham, the ground is called Blackland soil or black gumbo. It is thick clay which is difficult to dig down and plant any type of crop[ii]. The fire ants have no problem building above and tunneling below ground which helps aerate the soil. I continued to investigate into their little pesky world and found they are beneficial in feeding on harmful insects which infest crops and in return, help in the reduction of using insecticides. In suburbia, they feed on cockroach eggs, ticks, and other home invaders (can I get an Amen)!
After my educational quest to learn more on the fire ant I have come to the conclusion of what God was revealing to me; the ants are a part of His plan. I may have believed the fire ant is worthless and has no business being on this earth, but it does. All it took was opening my eyes to a different perspective on the matter.
God created all. He gave humans the ability to learn and understand the lower creatures and to maintain good stewardship over His land and take care of and respect the animals and insects. God also gave us a brain to ask questions and solve complex problems. I believe God welcomes my desire to unfold the mystery and questions about life as He holds the answers. If I slow down and be still, in turn, I can listen and hear His response.
I won’t be adopting fire ants as pets anytime soon, but the next time I question the existence of a creature or why some events happen, I should realize it is handled and God’s in control. On the beautiful sunny country day, I was encouraged to educate myself and see a situation through a different viewpoint. Now, I am working on my next question for God.