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they inhale those parts of it which are injurious to animal life, while the animals, on the contrary, take in that part which is unsuitable to vegetables.-We farther remarked, that this latter process is a principal means of the constant renovation of the atmosphere.--Observe that the God who first ordained still uninterruptedly upholds this order of things. Again reflect that since you entered into the world, you have continually breathed the air around you, and that you
will not cease to breathe it, till you become an inhabitant of another state. --Adore these manifestations of the power and love of God; let your breath be often employed in His praise ; let it be consecrated to Him for ever.
Have you observed the Ant? What have you observed about it?
What is the shape of its body? To the body of what insect is it most like?
Is there more than one kind of ant? How may the kinds be distinguished ? Does any
kind of ant fly? At what season of the year?
Where do you generally see ants ?-What appearance do they present? [That of leisure
What do they raise above the ground ?
Does the ant-hill differ from the mole-hill ? How?-Of what materials is the ant-hill composed ?
Do the ants perform their work in a few hours?
Do they persevere in it till it is done?
Have the heaps which they raise, an use ? What?
In the interior of the ant-hill are contained many cells, or small dwellings, and many passages like streets, which have communication with these dwellings; there are also larger habitations, and open spaces like squares : there is a resemblance to a city in the construction of their dwellings; and in their little commonwealth, the ants have their own laws and regulations.
By what power is all this effected ?
We call the power by which the inferior creatures act, Instinct :-who gives them instinct?
When many agents are employed, what is necessary in order to the accomplishment of their work?
Must there not be an agreement ?
Would there not otherwise be a failure in the design?
Might not one spoil the work of another?
Could one ant alone accomplish that which is performed by many?
How may what we have said be applied to the labours of men ?
Are not great works performed by the union of many agents ?
What often spoils the labours of men ?
The little insects which labour by instinct fail not to accomplish their end: we too often fail through want of union.--If we all sought to act under the influence of the One Spirit, there would be unity in the design, harmony in the operation, success in the execution.
In what other respects are the ants worthy our attention ?
In what do they resemble the bee?
During what season of the year do we see them employed ?
For what season do they provide ?
Are we recommended to imitate the ant? How ?
Read Prov. vi. 6–8; xxx. 24, 25.
Though the ants are such little creatures, yet by regular industry, they accomplish a great work: have not you an important work to do?
The ants wisely make provision, in the summer, for that season which to many insects is one of torpor, or of death : could the ants procure food in the winter?
The children of God provide for Eternity.[Matt. ri. 20; xix. 21 ; Luke xii. 21, 31—33; xvi. 9; 1 Tim. vi. 19.)
For what ought you to provide ?
Read Matt. xxv. l-12, and 14-30.
What is this called? Does it belong to the animate, or inanimate part of creation ?
Observe its shape and appearance. Has it feet? Does it seem to be intended to move ? To take food ?
In what is the insect enveloped ? Is not its covering like a tomb or prison ?
Was the insect always in this state ?
Which is preferable—the present state of the insect, or that into which it will pass ?
In what state may we say it is at present ? Is it not in one of torpor, repose, and almost of death?
Why is the insect in its present state ?
Is it not preparing for, or actually undergoing a change?
Who has appointed its change?
Let us consider the insect in its former state -what is the nature of the caterpillar?
Upon what does it feed? How does it move? Where does it live?
What will the insect be in its butterfly state ? Will it be light and beautiful ? Where will it live? Will it easily move ? On what will it feed?