Can you spot a fake smile? Have you ever given someone a fake smile? I’ll bet we all have at some point in our life. Salespeople have a vested interest in offering fake smiles to their customers — with the used car salesman having honed this craft. Have you ever seen a used car salesman who wasn’t smiling?
(I realize that not all salespeople offer fake smiles, but I also recognize it is in their “best interest” to smile even when they do not feel like it.
I just read an article about researchers at the University of Tokyo who have developed a mirror that makes a person appear happy even when he/she is not. A built-in camera tracks facial features in real time, and then tweaks the image to turn up the corners of the mouth and to create the beginnings of a smile in the eyes.
Now I have always believed that people look more beautiful when they smile; perhaps it is because a genuine smile makes a person seem more approachable and inviting. But what purpose would a mirror like this have? Well, apparently, when placed in retail stores, researchers believe that “happy-face mirrors” will “improve shoppers’ disposition and lead to more sales”.
Really? So, if I am sad because my puppy died and I go to the pet store and look in a mirror and see myself “smiling”, I might be persuaded to become happy resulting in a puppy chow shopping spree? Give me a break!
Can we just call this for what it is? Another attempt at deception. When I look in a mirror I want to know what I really look like. If I want to see a 175lb man when I look in the mirror, I can either push my son Patrick in front of me or I could buy one of those fun mirrors that makes me look skinny. Either way I am deceiving myself.
A mirror’s job is to reflect the truth about what one looks like – the positive and the negative, and in so doing, stir oneself to correct what is unsatisfactory. If I look in a mirror and see a piece of broccoli between my teeth, you can be sure I will not walk away smiling at the world. I don’t
want need a mirror that is lying to me.
Did you know that I carry around a special mirror that always tells me the truth? It is very honest in its assessment of me. It tells me when I am not so pretty, and to be honest, it hurts to see that reflection, but I also appreciate it. The reason the mirror is special is because it doesn’t just reflect my face, it reveals my heart. You have the same mirror; it is called the Bible. And I am convinced that the more often I look into it, the more transformed into the image of Christ I become.
How about you? When was the last time you stared into that special mirror?
In His Grip,