Thursday, July 21, 2011

Modesty in an Immodest World

"In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel." -1 Timothy 2:9

"Like a gold ring in a pig's snout is a beautiful woman without discretion." -Proverbs 11:22

"Do not let your adorning be external—the braiding of hair and the putting on of gold jewelry, or the clothing you wear— but let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God's sight is very precious." -1 Peter 3:3-4

The bible has much to say about modesty and how women ought to dress. God says to show your heart, not your body. Show your inner person, your soul, not your outward self. Modesty is something I think a lot about. Since I have a husband and two sons, I have to be very aware of what I wear. I want to bring glory to God, not sin to someone else's life by tempting them with my body. I did not always have this mind-set. I used to dress to appear beautiful on the outside and to get attention. But when I received the Holy Spirit to live in my heart, I was convicted about wearing revealing clothing. I feel as though my body is a temple and I didn't want my body to give the wrong impression about my heart. I also do not want to be responsible for tempting others to sin with immoral thoughts.

As a Christian I must take my wardrobe as more than just the clothes I wear. My best friend "Mrs. A" said to me not long ago "Women dress intentionally". Isn't that the truth?! Women put a lot of thought into what they wear, how it looks on their bodies, who will see them wearing it, does she "look fat" in it, etc. We don't just throw on clothes and go about our day not thinking about how we look. We check several times a day in the mirror to make sure we still look like we did when we first put the outfit on. I know because I love clothes. They make me feel pretty and elegant. They make me feel comfortable and cozy. Our clothes say a lot about our personality as well. If someone has on business clothes often, they must take their work seriously. If someone wears their pajamas and slippers to Walmart to get groceries, I would say they are pretty sloppy and don't even care about themselves. What kind of message do you think a woman is sending if she has on a very tight, very short, low v-neck dress with five-inch heels on at church is sending?

Virginia Woolf said: "There is much to support the view that it is clothes that wear us and not we them; we may make them take the mold of arm or breast, but they would mold our hearts, our brains, our tongues to their liking." I think what she is trying to say is that what we wear may reveal our hearts. If we wear clothes that cover us up, people will not be looking at our bodies, but instead listen to what we have to say and maybe see who we really are.

The Webster's dictionary defines modesty as freedom from conceit or vanity and propriety in dress, speech, or conduct. I know for me personally I want people to see God in me, not my outer appearance. God's reputation is at stake when Christians decide to dress immodestly. For men/boys, they need to pull their pants up and wear a belt. I am so tired of looking at their behinds and seeing what color underwear they decided to wear today and hope and pray that they are CLEAN! My boys are looking at these young men/boys and I really don't want them to think that is cool. It is a trend that started in prisons and jails because they do not provide belts for the inmates...what does this tell us about our society?!

When people dress inappropriately they are drawing the wrong kind of attention. Negative attention that could possibly lead to sin in someone else's life. About three weeks ago, Hubby and I were walking around an outdoor mall area with our boys. He was pushing Ducky and I was pushing Bear in a stroller. We came to a section where there was a street and I was paying attention to traffic when Bear suddenly exclaims "Mommy, look that girl is nakey in that picture!" Well, of course, it was a popular lingerie store with a huge window sized picture of a model in nothing but underwear that was the same color as her skin. Even my 2-1/2 year old can figure our that she needed clothes on. Why can't grown-ups figure it out? Why can't their be any mystery to a woman anymore?

I fear that Hubby and I may one day have a daughter (not anytime soon, I hope). What will we dress her in? If you go to any store nowadays they are making mini skirts for babies, bikinis for toddlers, tube tops for little girls. I fear that I may have to make clothes for her myself. I have a hard enough time finding clothes for myself that aren't too short, low-cut, tight, holey, etc. Why would we want to dress out little precious daughters in these things when their are people looking at them and being tempted. I know it sounds horrible, but it is true.

One more point before I wrap it up. If you go to church, please wear something appropriate. It is very distracting to everyone if you wear "stripper clothes". Young boys look at women and are very vulnerable. If you leave nothing to the imagination...well you get my drift. 

I know a lot of people may be upset or angry or horrified that I would write such things. I am not here to judge. I used to dress very immodestly. I still struggle with what to wear. I struggle with not judging others just for the clothing they have on or lack thereof. I am a sinner in need of forgiveness everyday. I just don't want my children and husband to be tempted by others wearing revealing clothes. I don't want my children to think I have bodily pride (by wearing a certain outfit). Our society and culture are so de-sensitized that we don't even realize what we are doing to our men and children. We are teaching our girls that it's ok to dress like those women in movies and on tv. We are teaching our boys to look for a woman who flaunts everything she's got and leaves nothing to the imagination.

I am not saying that we should all wear turtle necks and long skirts, but at least put some thought into what you put on your body. Think about whether something is hanging out that shouldn't be. Certain parts of our bodies are meant for our husbands ONLY! I wear normal clothing and sometimes new fashions. I try not to wear trendy clothing because in 6 months it will be out of fashion. We put a lot of thought and care as to what we put into our bodies, why is the outer part any different?

We have free will, of course, to choose what we want to wear. But please seek God in this matter. Open your bible and see what He has to say on the subject. Please pray about your clothes and what you look like to others. Are you sending a message of sexual sin and immoral thoughts/behavior? Or, are you sending a message that God is first in your life and you want people to know Him, not see your outer body?

Think about it...

God Bless,


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