Tuesday, April 11, 2017

It’s Not Always the Way It Looks or Sounds

Have you ever been trying on clothes at a store and that outfit looked great in those amazing, magical store’s mirrors? You even might have thought “You’re looking 10 pounds thinner”! But at home and when trying that outfit on, it was like “What was I thinking? What was I seeing?”

And, what about those mirrors at church or other public places? A few weeks ago, I went with the family to the kid’s Speech and Debate Tournament being held at a school in Lewisville, TX. I went to the restroom and my twin, looking back at me….looked pretty good! I promptly told my daughter, “You’ve got to go check yourself out in the mirror in the restroom! It’s great lighting in there!” Of course, great in the sense that the imperfections I saw in the mirror at home, weren’t seen in those mirrors.

Here’s the official word: Store mirrors may be designed or placed to make us look thinner. Some stores play tricks to convince us to buy clothes while we’re in the dressing room. The lighting may be one factor, but more likely, it’s the angle of the mirror. Just like a fun house mirror, dressing room mirrors are sometimes angled to change the way we look. Stores will often tilt the mirror so the bottom is farther forward than the top which creates the illusion that you are taller and thinner. The best advice I read was to have someone take a picture of you so you can judge if the outfit or piece of clothing is really flattering or not. It's not always what we see!

When we were at the theme parks of Disney World a few weeks ago, Payton commented “Notice the music we’re hearing. It’s programmed to make us happy and keep us moving quickly.” Here’s the official word from Disney. Most people pay very little attention to the music being played in the background while visiting a Disney theme park. Our eyes are much too busy taking in all of the sights to consciously pay any attention to the melodies filling the air. Disney puts a lot of thought into the music they select for each land or area of their parks. It's usually somewhat upbeat. Disney wants their guests to be happy and a jaunty melody can affect our mood. Disney also wants the music to be recognizable when possible. If we can hum along with a tune, we'll feel at home and comfortable. Maybe we should put on some of that HAPPY music in our homes!

Just think about the ways the world around us is playing mind and body games with us. Sounds like "smoke and mirrors" (distorting the truth) to me. Notice how those who are constantly listening to negative news tend to take on the side of that news -- however it's delivered? Notice how the negativity in our homes oftentimes changes a positive mood to a negative one. Notice how a simple sneeze can make us think "I must be catching a cold!" I would suggest that the enemy of our souls is at work to bring us F.E.A.R.-- False Evidence Appearing Real. Those sights and sounds are examples of how we are affected by what we see and hear in our lives. The way a mirror might make us look better or worse; the way music can cause us to be happy enough to move to a beat. That’s the subtleties that the enemy of our souls uses to deceive us.

The same enemy who tried to convince Jesus' followers that he had died to never live again, is the same enemy that tries to convince us that there is no hope for tomorrow, that we will never recover from this financial setback or illness; that our marriage will never be whole again, that our country is going to hell in a handbasket. That same enemy tries to convince us that we should give up. But here's the real true MIRROR and the very authentic SOUNDS from God's Word:
-- We are not going under, we’re going over!
-- We’re not the tail, we’re the head!
-- We’re not going to die, we’re going to live!
-- And, best new of all….go ahead and read the last chapter of our BOOK….WE WIN!!!

Whatever the situation is in our lives this day, whatever fear we're facing, whatever false evidence has been placed in front of us, we must remember that God is faithful, and the promise He made us has not died. It's alive! It may appear to be dead, but in reality it’s in process, and we’re going to see the fulfillment of that promise, because God cannot lie!