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Who Doesn't Love A Belly Rub?

Submission Humility Comfort

Source: “Expert reveals why dogs love belly rubs and what it actually means when they roll over” by Nia Dalton, published mirror.co.uk.com, retrieved 4/22/22

Link to Source: Click here to view source

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2022-05-20

Scripture: 1 Corinthians 16:19 ; 1 Peter 5:5

Author: Illustration Exchange
9

ILLUSTRATION

Almost every dog does it! At the first hint of a potential belly rub, they immediately roll over, splay their legs, and wait for the incoming pats of perfection leading to belly blissfulness.

But what is REALLY happening here? Do all dogs universally love belly rubs? Is this purely about gratification? Or is something else going on here?

Dog behaviourist and trainer, Adem Fehmi, explains that, at its core, this posture is actually not so much an invitation to affection, but rather an act of submission.

"Us humans often see this as an invitation to stroke a dog’s belly, as if the dog is 'asking' us by assuming this position.” But actually, he explains, "The behaviour of rolling over and exposing their belly often starts from submission, as this stance is a submissive position in dog body language.”

Now, that doesn’t mean most dogs don’t love a good belly rub. I mean, who doesn’t?!

Yet, what starts as an act of submission results in the reception of affection, affirmation, comfort, and consolation. Thus, the response becomes both an act of submission AND a learned response and reflexive action in anticipation of the comfort, affection, pleasure to come.

 

APPLICATION

Dogs are man’s best friends on so many levels. We can learn so much from them. We can even learn what our relationship with our Heavenly Father should look like.

God’s desire is to reach down and touch us, to love on us, to affirm us, to comfort and console us. But before we can rightly receive any of those blessings, we must first posture ourselves into a position of submission. 

“Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God?  You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. So glorify God in your body” (1 Corinthians 6:19-20, ESV).

“But he gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says: ‘God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble’” (James 4:6, NIV).

“In the same way, you who are younger, submit yourselves to your elders. All of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, because, ‘God opposes the proud  but shows favor to the humble.’ Humble yourselves, therefore, under God’s mighty hand, that he may lift you up in due time. Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you” (1 Peter 5:5-6, NIV).

“Do you not know that if you present yourselves to anyone as obedient slaves, you are slaves of the one whom you obey, either of sin, which leads to death, or of obedience, which leads to righteousness? But thanks be to God, that you who were once slaves of sin have become obedient from the heart to the standard of teaching to which you were committed, and, having been set free from sin, have become slaves of righteousness. I am speaking in human terms, because of your natural limitations. For just as you once presented your members as slaves to impurity and to lawlessness leading to more lawlessness, so now present your members as slaves to righteousness leading to sanctification” (Romans 6:16-19, ESV).

Determined to Run

Endurance Humility Purpose

Source: Various, including Britannica.com, "Jim Thorpe American Athlete"

Link to Source: Click here to view source

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2022-03-09

Scripture: Hebrews 12:1

Author: Illustration Exchange
6

ILLUSTRATION

Jim Thorpe, born May 28, 1888, in the Indian Territory of Oklahoma, has been acclaimed as one of the most accomplished “all-around” athletes in history.  In fact, in 1950 he was selected by American sportswriters and broadcasters as the greatest American athlete of the early 20th century. 

He was predominantly of American Indian descent and attended Indian schools growing up.  Financially poor and underprivileged by any standards, he was every bit rich in athletic prowess.  He played it all – baseball, football, basketball, boxing, lacrosse, swimming, hockey, and most famously, track and field. 

Strong as a bull and fast as lightning, Thorpe competed in the Stockholm Olympics of 1912 in both the Pentathlon and the Decathlon.  But just before he was set to take the field he discovered someone had stolen his shoes. Undeterred, he searched for another pair. 

What he found was not a "pair," but rather two different sized, different styled shoes discarded in a trash can. To make the larger of the two shoes fit, he had to wear extra socks. 

Dressed in his pauperish, mismatched replacements, he humbly took to the field and won Gold Medals in both competitions.

APPLICATION

God has set a race before you.  He’s challenged you to ready yourself.  Even so, unexpected obstacles can (and will) present themselves.  It will take tenacity, courage, creativity, and maybe even a good dose of humility to stay the course.

What is YOUR excuse for not running with endurance the race which God has set before you?

“Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us …” Heb 12:1 (ESV

Forever Dependent

Dependence on God Humility Gratitude

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2021-03-28

Scripture: 2 Corinthians 12:9

Author: Illustration Exchange
7

ILLUSTRATION

There is perhaps no greater picture of total dependence than that of an infant rooting for its mother’s milk. The toddler may insist on holding a cup of milk by himself, but he is just as dependent on his parents to provide it.  And the dairy farmer, who owns the cows that produce the milk, is just as dependent on his Creator to provide the straw needed to feed his cows.

APPLICATION

At some point in our growth and development, most of us begin to think that we have arrived at a point of independence.  We make the mistake of thinking that by taking on more responsibility, we have become independent.   

But we never have, nor will we ever, create our own necessary food, or the universe in which it is cultivated, or the people who grow it, or the teeth that crush it, or the saliva the begins to break it down, or the stomach that digests it, or the biological system that delivers it to the individual cells of the body.  

At the height of our abilities, we only ever play a minuscule role in providing for ourselves.  But that doesn't stop us from looking at our successes and thinking, "I've got this."  

The truth of the matter is that we don't have this, but God does have us. Let a stroke take that tiny part of our independence away and we very quickly come to the realization of just how totally dependent on God we really are.

The point is God has a purpose not just for the provisions He provides but even for the trials that seem to set us back.  Blind and arrogant as we are to our total dependence on God, we often need His help to see the truth.  Sometimes that help comes in the form of helplessness.

"But he said to me, 'My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.' Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me" (2 Corinthians 12:9). 

My Contribution

Humility Success Quotes Praise

Contributed By: Thomas Bevers | Date Posted: 2019-10-16

Scripture: Philippians 4:13

Author: Thomas Bevers
8

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What Job Knew

Humility Trust (In God) Suffering

Contributed By: Corey Sawyers | Date Posted: 2018-09-08

Scripture: Job 19:25 ; Job 40:1

Author: Corey Sawyers
9

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The Man Who Is Willing To Serve Unnoticed

Calling Spiritual Gifts Humility

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2017-05-26

Scripture: Matthew 23:11

Author: Illustration Exchange
8

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A Pencil In God's Hand

Witness Humility Stewardship

Contributed By: Mitchell Dillon | Date Posted: 2017-05-03

Scripture: John 3:30

Author: Mother Teresa
15

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What Stan Lee Did For Superheroes

Weakness Power Humility

Contributed By: Da Al | Date Posted: 2017-03-17

Scripture: 2 Corinthians 12:10

Author: Alex Hodgson / Illustration Exchange
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What's Your Biggest Weakness?

Weakness Salvation Humility

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2016-10-14

Scripture: 1 John 1:8 ; 1 John 1:9

Author: Illustration Exchange
9

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God's Paralympics

Humility Weakness God's Power

Contributed By: Illustration Exchange | Date Posted: 2016-09-22

Scripture: 2 Corinthians 12:9

Author: Illustration Exchange
9

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