I suppose when Jesus was teaching his followers about giving and the blessings they would receive in return, he wasn't talking about giving a dog a belly rub.
The second my feet hit the floor each morning, our dog Otto rolls onto his back and looks at me longingly. Sometimes I reach over and pat his head as a way to appease him for the time being. Usually, however, I ignore his hopeful look and quickly move past him to get to the bathroom. Either way, I hear him sigh as he rolls back over to his side. I think to myself, "I'll give him some attention later. Now is not a good time for me." Once again, in my hustle and bustle of living, I've dashed his hopes of receiving the pleasure of a belly rub. I've also robbed myself of a blessing.
It has occurred to me lately that when I don't take the opportunity to give when a need presents itself, I miss my opportunity to receive. When I put off blessing others with my time, talents, and resources, I'm also putting off receiving my own blessings.
How does this relate to belly rubs you ask? One day when I was feeling frazzled, I absent mindedly began petting Otto. He quickly rolled onto his back with his feet in the air and enjoyed the soothing rub down. Amazingly, I discovered how soothing this was for me in return! There's just something about having a quiet moment with your pet that is relaxing. I could feel the frustrations of my day drifting away. I then realized how many times I had let this opportunity slip through my fingers. Giving Otto a belly rub gives me the blessing of peace!
I challenge you to give of yourself, even if it's just a belly rub, and see how Jesus blesses you!
Give, and it will be given of you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you. Luke 6:38
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