GOOD MORNING WordPress community,
I hope you’ve all had a blessed and productive week thus far, filled with God’s joy and comfort! Today’s post is geared towards all the wonderfully made ladies out there, but men please feel free to continue reading, it’d be nice to get your input too. Today’s topic of discussion is on MODESTY. I know that the word ‘modesty’ brings about various responses (mixed feelings) to those who hear it, but do hear your sister out. I am not here to bash anyone down, but to encourage others through my own personal journey of faith.
A lot of the time when people refer to modesty they only tend to think about the way in which one dresses, but we mustn’t forget that modesty is more than just what we wear. It’s a heart matter, it’s having the desire to totally surrender all of our ways before the Lord. But in today’s post I will be talking about modesty in relation to dressing!
1 Peter 3:3-4 ~ “Don’t be concerned about the outward beauty of fancy hairstyles, expensive jewelry, or beautiful clothes. You should clothe yourselves instead with the beauty that comes from within, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is so precious to God.”
I understand that people’s views on what modesty looks like can be extremely different, so let’s start by looking into what the word modesty actually means.
Modesty (Oxford languages definition): Behaviour, manner, or appearance intended to avoid impropriety or indecency.
Impropriety is failure to observe set standards. And as believers God has given us a standard to bring Him glory in ALL we do, including through the clothing we wear. A woman who professes to worship God is to dress modestly. This is not obligatory for the unbeliever as they do not know God or God’s standards.
1 Timothy 2:9-10 ~ “And I want women to be modest in their appearance. They should wear decent and appropriate clothing and not draw attention to themselves by the way they fix their hair or by wearing gold or pearls or expensive clothes. For women who claim to be devoted to God should make themselves attractive by the good things they do.”
I must admit that the struggle in finding decent clothing is for REAL. I remember unwrapping a Christmas gift which my sister bought me, her face lit up because this particular dress she purchased was ‘modest’. Only to turn the dress around and find that it had no back to it. Her mouth dropped in disbelief but we all couldn’t help but laugh. I was thankful anyway firmly holding onto the view that ‘it’s the thought that counts’. My search to find decent clothing hasn’t been the easiest journey. It does get frustrating when I come across a beautiful dress online only to find when viewing the dress at various angles, that it has no back to it or a split up to the hip joint.
My personal journey with modesty has drastically changed over the years. I hold the view that my standards of modesty shouldn’t change just because I’m in a place with a bit of sand and water (the beach or a pool). What I once deemed as acceptable to wear I no longer do. I don’t wear bikinis, but I do wear full swim suits. You can get some decent swimming leggings (full length or 3/4 lengths) accompanied with a nice swim top via Amazon. But I must admit they’re fairly expensive. I do not like to throw stones at other believers who dress a certain way, because it took time for my to respond to the Holy Spirit’s nudging with regards to how I dress (yup I’d brush off His wise counsel at times). But if someone asks me about my views on modesty and why I dress a certain way, I will not hide my experience nor be ashamed to share my faith journey. The Holy Spirit was super patient and gentle with me. I thank God for convicting me and given me the desire to want to please Him through my apparel. Wearing a full swim suit has also opened the door for me to share my faith with my friends whilst on holiday. In the past I used to wear bodycon dresses that were fairly tight. I thought to myself ‘great I’m covered up to my knees or ankles’, yet every dip, curve, and bump was pretty visible. My standards changed because God touched my heart. The Holy Spirit convicted me with His gentle, quiet, whisper, cheering me on informing me that I can do so much better for God. Now my preferred personal way to dress is to have my items of clothing reach my knees without being sooooo figure hugging. I tend to select tops or dresses that don’t leave me worrying about my bra strap being on show!
One needs to be taught the truth in order to follow the truth. Paul gave the believers in Corinth specific instructions on how they ought to behave (1 Timothy 2). This informs me that people need to be told how to act in a godly manner, through the use of clear guidelines. Without Paul’s Holy Spirit inspired direction the people would have lived in total confusion. Also the Bible states that how can people believe unless they hear? And how can people know how to live right without being told? So don’t feel ashamed if you have a lot of burning questions about modesty. We all have a lot to learn on our journey of faith. This is why I always like to emphasise the importance of asking the Holy Spirit for wisdom, ask Him regarding anything you’re unsure about. Seek godly counsel and remember no human can play the Holy Spirit for you, so ask Him for tips on modesty.
The older women were encouraged to teach the younger women on how to live pure lives that would bring honour to God! Throughout life we are continually learning regardless of how old we are, or wether we’re married or single 😀. This tells me that modesty is something which needs to be learnt through teaching.
Titus 2:3-5 ~ “Similarly, teach the older women to live in a way that honors God. They must not slander others or be heavy drinkers. Instead, they should teach others what is good. These older women must train the younger women to love their husbands and their children, to live wisely and be pure, to work in their homes, to do good, and to be submissive to their husbands. Then they will not bring shame on the word of God.”
Some wardrobe hacks
⁃ Invest in vests! Black and white. This comes into great use if a top/blouse is a bit too low leaving cleavage exposed. Vests are also great for tops/dresses with low backs.
⁃ Long cardigans/blazers are fantastic for adding extra beauty to an outfit. A lot of ladies I know love how long blazers/cardigans keep the hip and glutes area less exposed.
⁃ Be prepared to shop around and don’t let it discourage you.
⁃ Remember what is ok for an individual modelling an outfit, may not be so flattering on you. Don’t forget that we all have unique beautiful figures. (I’m speaking from experience here, it’s super annoying having to return an item that fits well everywhere except from the bust region).
⁃ Ensure that your items of clothing are comfortable when moving around. Try raising your arms to make sure that the material is not choking your armpits leaving you feeling very restricted. Sit down to check if your skirt or dress rides up (ladies I’m sure many of you have encountered that lovely but annoying dress/skirt that rides up to mid thigh level when walking or sitting 🙈).
Anyways I hope you could take away something constructive and edifying from today’s post. And don’t forget that it’s a journey, therefore don’t be surprised if the Holy Spirit encourages you with the truth that you can do better in your walk with God, through what you wear, how you speak, or how you treat others etc. I know that there’s room for further improvement in my personal walk with Christ, and this excites me because I know that God is daily transforming me by the renewing of my mind.
Stay safe and God bless
Christian Lady After God’s Own Heart