I really appreciate the blogs I’ve read on the use of the scale. Some women have decided to give them up altogether because of their potential for making them stumble. I applaud that. The closer we come to the point where we see ourselves as God sees us, the better—and God doesn’t see us as a number on the scale. He sees our hearts.
I used to feel insecure because of my weight. In my mind, I could see this lineup of women, and I was standing at the wrong end of the line—the unacceptable end—the overweight end.
I felt self-conscious about my looks, and this made me self-conscious about my relationships. I worried that people wouldn’t like me because I wasn't "good enough." This often kept me from reaching out to others—at least the ones who intimidated me.
Even though I haven’t been heavy for awhile, I still sometimes see myself at the unacceptable end of the line because I don’t measure up to the world’s standards. I’m not sophisticated, I’m not fashionable (except for the rare occasion), and I don’t have a glamorous job. In fact, I don’t have a job at all.
I’m a home school mom, an occupation that carries its own stigma. Everyone has an opinion about home schooling and not all the opinions are good. At least in my own life, it hasn’t been a real self-image booster, even though it's been a delightful way of life.
So how do I get over my insecurity given my handicaps? Do I need to stop homeschooling and get a glamorous life? No, of course not. What I need to do is see myself (and my life) from God’s point of view. My insecurity sometimes interferes with loving others well, so it's an issue God wants me to work on. And I work on it, not by trying to look good in the world's eyes, but by working hard to see myself the way God sees me.
Every time I catch myself feeling insecure, I write down what I'm thinking - or what I think others are thinking about me. Then I compare those thoughts with God's thoughts.
Does He think I'm a loser because my outfit's not the greatest? No. Does He think I'm a failure because I gained a pound? No. Does He think I'm mean because I said something mean to that woman? Well, yes, He thought that was mean. I better apologize.
Sometimes these sessions lead to repentance, asking God to forgive me for my sin. Sometimes they lead to prayer, asking God to make me more like Him. And almost all the time they lead to a new view of myself as I lay down the standard of the world and pick up the standard of God.
God judges people according to their hearts (1 Samuel 16:7, Luke 16:15), and He's not crazy about the world's standards. It bothers Him when looks are valued more than character, when glamour is more important than godliness, and when a model-like figure is more desirable than a Christ-like love.
I think He probably grieves when He watches us judge ourselves by the world's standards, and then condemn ourselves because we don't measure up.
The scale can be a stumbling block, because it encourages us to see ourselves through the world's eyes. If we're going to step on the scale, we must be careful not to believe the lies that crop up when we see a number we don't want to see.
I'll be talking more about those lies in my next post. For now, though, try to see yourself through the eyes of the One who adores you—and if you're tempted to see yourself through the eyes of the world, watch out for the scale.