Have you tried to look through glasses--any kind--with a smear or scratch right in the middle of the lense? Nothing looks right. How about the fun house? With the mirrors, tilted floor, and other mind-boggling tricks, nothing is what it seems. Life can be a lot like that. Distortion is a part of life. Once we see past it, the truth will set us free.
I remember trying to buy clothes at a Goodwill that fit. Every time I took an outfit into the dressing room, I was skeptical. Not only did it fit, it fit well! I was shocked. Even to this day, I still look at clothes in my current size thinking they will be too tight. They never are. Weight that is lost on the body is still there in the mind.
Some people who are large wear clothing that is snug or too tight. Gaping spots at the buttons and bulges flowing over the waistband is certainly not attractive nor comfortable. Two reasons for lack of fit have stood out to me in personal training: 1) the person is afraid to invest in clothing that fits, or 2) they think this "fit" is normal. Either way, there is a distortion of reality.
When it comes to our health, we are our own worst enemies. We deny our problems until we can't anymore. We also justify things we know are not right. Somehow we all know eating a whole dozen donuts by one's self on the way to work is not helpful to our waistline and definitely not to our overall health! Why in the world do we lie to ourselves? The answer is to avoid guilt. When our blood pressure skyrockets or our feet look purple and tingle, it's past time to get help! Prevention is certainly worth a pound of cure. Reality is, though, we struggle with food addictions and our bodies pay for it.
I have personally witnessed the scale game in the women's locker room of gyms. Women have stepped onto the scale after setting it back five to ten pounds! When they realize they've been "caught", they justify the act by stating matter-of-factly, "This scale doesn't match mine at home/doctor's office". What gives? The truth is brutal to fragile egos. None of us likes to admit overindulging caught up with us.
Some of the individuals on social media put out a persona that is unlike who they truly are in real social situations. The person who was left out of groups finds a way to become a leader of a new group of peers. The quiet, shy person pulls off the appearance of total confidence. Why does this work? It is very much like acting. When someone feels safe, stepping out of previously set social hierarchy, they are free to start fresh by creating a new persona. However, it usually backfires on them sometime. We want so badly to be accepted, even if it isn't real.
A notion exists today that truth is relative. Your truth is real. Someone else's truth is real, too, even if yours and theirs are totally opposite of each other. In Christian circles you will see people create their own doctrine resembling some horribly done patchwork quilt. One part contradicts another while the individuals find a way to force it to "work". One woman I knew believed that people became angels after they died. A man I once knew believed that God is love; therefore, a loving God would never send anyone to Hell. Why do they believe these things when Scripture says otherwise? Emotional issues lurking under the surface cause people to distort the truth in order to avoid pain.
Char, you say, what do these things have to do with each other? No one likes truth that hits a sore point, nor does anyone handle new reality easily. With the distortion of size, it could be about emotion as much as the difficulty of adapting to the reality of our current status. Scales are able to be manipulated even though they are bluntly honest with us. We don't like to be told that we overindulged too many times, while our health takes a nosedive. No one likes to be left out, under-appreciated, nor alone. When we get the opportunity to change that, we try, even if it means lying. When we don't like the truth of Scripture, we create our own truth. After all, we do like making our own rules. Once we lay aside our pride, our control, our confusion, we are open to be re-created by our Creator.
I love the image of God as the potter and us as His clay (Isaiah 64:8; Jeremiah 18:1-6). He works out the imperfections, molding us and re-making us more in His image. It would be ridiculous for us to tell the Potter what to do with His clay! Instead, giving into His skillful hand brings about a greater perfection. We must focus on allowing Him to work in us. We are in the process of becoming a beautiful masterpiece! It is by far more important than our size, what we eat, or our social status. When we get rid of all the distortion to see the Truth, everything suddenly becomes clear. He isn't done with us yet, we are His work in progress!
May God bless you!