The Ant and the Contact Lens

FellowSurvivor, a regular reader/commenter on this blog, sent this to me yesterday and I thought it was very good.  I couldn’t copy the photos for some reason, but I found the cartoon and added it to the bottom.  There are so many of these stories that turn out to be phony that I was happy to find the following on the “truthorfiction” site:

“A published version of the story is in the book Keep a Quiet Heart by inspirational author Elisabeth Elliot.  In a chapter she titled Lost and Found she said it came from Brenda Foltz of Princeton, Minnesota.  In the book Brenda tells her story first-hand but apart from that it’s fairly similar to the version in the forwarded email.”

The Ant and the Contact Lens – A True Story

Brenda was almost halfway to the top of the tremendous granite cliff.  She was standing on a ledge where she was taking a breather during this, her first rock climb.  As she rested there, the safety rope snapped against her eye and knocked out her contact lens.

‘Great’, she thought.  ‘Here I am on a rock ledge, hundreds of feet from the bottom and hundreds of feet to the top of this cliff, and now my sight is blurry.’  She looked and looked, hoping that somehow it had landed on the ledge.  But it just wasn’t there.

She felt the panic rising in her, so she began praying.  She prayed for calm, and she prayed that she might find her contact lens.  When she got to the top, a friend examined her eye and her clothing for the lens, but it was not to be found.  Although she was calm now that she was at the top, she was saddened because she could not clearly see across the range of mountains.  She thought of the Bible verse ‘The eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth.’

She thought, ‘Lord, You can see all these mountains.  You know every stone and leaf, and You know exactly where my contact lens is.  Please help me.’

Later, when they had hiked down the trail to the bottom of the cliff they met another party of climbers just starting up the face of the cliff.  One of them shouted out, ‘Hey, you guys!  Anybody lose a contact lens?’

Well, that would be startling enough, but you know why the climber saw it?  An ant was moving slowly across a twig on the face of the rock, carrying it!

The story doesn’t end there.  Brenda’s father is a cartoonist.  When she told him the incredible story of the ant, the prayer, and the contact lens, he drew a cartoon of an ant lugging that contact lens with the caption, ‘Lord, I don’t know why You want me to carry this thing.  I can’t eat it, and it’s awfully heavy.  But if this is what You want me to do; I’ll carry it for You.’

God doesn’t call the qualified;

He qualifies the called.ant


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9 responses to “The Ant and the Contact Lens

  1. This was a great anecdote to share! It is amazing how God will do and use whatever it takes to get His work accomplished. We live in such a huge minuscule world :).

  2. Tammy

    Thank you for sharing this. I have read this before but did not know it was a true story.

    “He qualifies the called” This is so true.

    When we invite Jesus to be our Savior and Lord, the Holy Spirit gives us spiritual gifts. Psalm 37:4 Delight yourself in the LORD, and he will give you the desires of your heart.

    Scripture tells us that if we seek Him we will find Him. He knew my heart. He knew what kind of troubles to send into my life to cause me to seek him. He knew that I would respond.

    I had NO IDEA what he had planned for me. I can only tell you that I sought Him with all of my heart. Then he orchestrated incredible events in my life to lead me in the direction he wanted me to go.

    Actually most of those events were not good things. They were more challenging than losing a contact lens. Luke 16:10 says “Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much, and whoever is dishonest with very little will also be dishonest with much”

    I learned to trust Him. Even in the little things. Each challenge he placed in front of me caused me to make decisions that He wanted me to make. I still have challenges, but I am amazed with what he has done in my life.

    A couple of weeks ago, I realized that one of my diamond earrings had fallen out. I had gotten really upset another time when that happened, but this time I was calm. I should mention that we have 3 acres and I had just walked across about an acre that evening. I prayed, “Lord I know you know where that earring is. Please help me find it.” I went to sleep.

    The next morning I went down the steps and the earring was on the rug at the bottom of the steps.

    Did you know that God even cares about our HAIR enough to know how many there are on our heads? Luke 12:7 “Why, even the hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not; you are of more value than many sparrows”


  3. I totally love this story. I love reading the cartoon first, not knowing and wondering why the ant would be carrying the contact lens, as most days I feel like the ant and don’t know why I have been called to carry what I am carrying. To read the story after the cartoon and see that each one of us may not understand what we are called to do but we are all connected and going through our current struggles can help someone else. At least that is was it meant to me. I hope that I can pass on to others something of value, from my experiences, and that they can in turn pass their knowledge and experiences to others. There are always going to people in better spiritual condition than me (or further down the road than I), but in the same turn, there also will be people that are newer than I to this spiritual journey, so we should always feel like we should have something to give.

  4. UnForsaken

    Elisabeth Elliot’s words have always deeply touched me. Even as a child, listening to her program’s Beautiful opening verse! Tammy, encouraged by your experience so much like some of mine …. and esp. the verse at the end. For those of us with hair loss, it’s particularly poignient.

  5. Penny

    Love this ant.

  6. Thanks again to FellowSurvivor for sending this on. It is an encouraging message for all of us. 🙂

    • Fellow Survivor


      This story did speak to me because of the heavy load that my heart is carrying. The objective for me is to turn to Jesus because he Promised that when the load gets to heavy give it to him to carry. Whenever I can successfully do that, if even for a few moments, I feel peace. When my former family would travel, I would see my little girl lugging her small little suitcase and back pack through the airport. I saw the heavy load the ex N wife was carrying too. Before we arrived to the assigned gate, I had 5 bags over my shoulders with two suitcases trailing behind so they could walk unfettered. It was my pleasure to do that for them so they could walk freely. I loved them both. And when I pray, I simply say ” Its to heavy, please take this burden from me”

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