Hero, the wonder dog, is certainly a wonder. I wonder what in the world makes him act they way he does a great deal. One of the things he does on a daily basis is bury his nose when he is sleeping. He likes to burrow under the covers at night, but during the day, I will see him sleeping with his nose against the side of his bed or under a pillow on the couch. Personally, I get a little claustrophobic with these actions.
NOW as a child, I slept with my heads under the covers every night. Everyone knows the monsters can't get you when you are hidden under the covers. There was nothing my brother and cousins liked better than scaring me at night--so WHY would I NOT think the monsters came out at night? Those monsters definitely tortured me whenever they had the opportunity. BUT I ALWAYS had my nose sticking out from under the cover---suffocation was almost as scary as the monsters. So there is a part of me that understands Hero hiding his nose--it's self protection.
We all practice various forms of self protection. Some stay on the offense and are in attack mode at all times. They lash out before they even know if they are going to be attacked. Their defense seldom gets a workout. In fact, wars have been started by infamous historical figures with this very philosophy. To allow another to create the need to go on the defense is not an option. Attack-attack--and attack--beat them down with a verbal assault and never allow a word to be uttered by another.
Another form of self protection is withdrawal. If a confrontation is never possible, then there is no need for a good defense. By refusing to enter the fray, we remove the risk of injury. With withdrawal though comes isolation and loneliness.
Finally, there are the masks many of us wear in an effort to protect ourselves. If we don't allow the world to see who we really are, then there is no possibility of injury. We put the mask of the moment on to fit in with those we are surrounded by. No one ever sees through the mask and knows who we really are. If you were to ask different people from different groups in our lives, they would all describe us differently. We have adapted to what we think is acceptable depending upon the time and circumstance. We have become chameleons.
Hero's penchant for burying his nose is caused from years of environment and genetic tendencies. Why do we humans--the top of the food chain feel the need for self protection? Our experiences and living in a fallen world create a need to try and protect ourselves from injury and attack. Sadly the Golden Rule seems to have been forgotten at best and purposefully discarded at the extreme worst. We have forgotten how to treat others the way we desire to be treated.
What is the answer? As we used to tell the two and three year old classes in Children's Church, Jesus is always the answer. The world needs Jesus--plain and simple. Jesus is our protector, our defender, our faithful provider. Jesus--the Mighty Lion--our Fortress in a broken world. Jesus.