Let’s talk about a non popular word that is seldom discussed at church:
As a girl who grew up in church, I can see a lot of changes the way ladies (and even gentlemen too) clothe themselves every Sunday service.
When I was younger, my mother would always prepare a dress that reaches below the knee, for me to wear on Sundays. You might say I’m one of those conservative doll-looking girl during my kids church days (got lots of those dresses that I even wore during our school wash day because yah, jeans aren’t a thing for me before).
And basically ladies in their teens and early twenties, and even the aunts/titas, that time, (well, at least in our church) wore long skirts that are at least below the knee—which is how we misconception-ly define modesty.
You might think that our church has some silent rules that everyone are assumed to know and follow without it being discussed; like some sort of rule of morality that is silently implemented. But nobody talks about it.
Just wear what you want
As this world revolves, our culture and tradition changes. Today, I can see more and more ladies going to church, wearing really short skirts and tops that shows a lot of skin, and some wear very casual clothes like jeans and tees.
Although I was brought up in a conservative family, I am not saying that these (especially the former) are wrong and inappropriate. These are purely my observations, and maybe you can relate to me somehow. And who am I to judge somebody based only on what they wear, anyway?
And more often than not, the line “just wear what you want” is commonly the reason why we wear what we wear. This can be our to-go-to when we do not know what to wear, even in the daily basis.
And this is actually dangerous because people nowadays tend to come up with reasons just to make something right, okay, and moral.
“It is okay as long as it makes me happy. It’s okay because that’s what others are wearing. And it’s okay because hey, it’s already 2019!”
But that’s not totally okay!
Just because somebody tells you that it’s cold and raining outside doesn’t mean you have to wear jackets and raincoats, if you see that the sun’s shining and it’s, in fact, 33°C outside.
What God Said We Should Wear
So, did God really command us to wear this and that dress? Obviously, no.
In the Bible, modesty is not really about what kind of clothes we’re going to wear. It does not say that girls should wear dresses, and boys, the tuxedo. (Lol) It doesn’t say about the right length of skirt and sleeves, nor the right amount of transparency that do not expose our skin.
It doesn’t even say that we should go on follow what’s in the norm, nor go against the norm!
Because modesty, in this aspect, is about the purpose of choosing what clothes to wear. It’s about where our hearts stand, that mainly doesn’t concern that of the physical aspect (Matt. 15:8).
If we focus on how these kind of clothes make us more beautiful in the standard of the world, if we decide to wear such clothes to shift people’s attention from God to us, if we take pride from what we’re wearing, then maybe we should have our hearts checked.
Are we wanting more of these more than we want God?
[What I’m saying here is that, there’s nothing wrong with making yourself beautiful, or taking confidence from it in a certain degree, but it’s more on where our attention and focus is. Again, this is where we should check our hearts.]
As children of God, to be able to show modesty is by truly knowing who we represent—Christ. It’s understanding the kind of identity that God wants us to live and reflect. It’s understanding who we are in Christ, and what kind of attitude does Jesus wants us to live by. It’s by showing that it is no longer us, but Christ who lives in our body and spirit. (Galatians 2:20).
As children of God, to be able to show modesty is by truly knowing who we represent.
And we do not represent those fashion magazines, those Korean artists, those what we see on Instagram and fashion blogs. We don’t represent those who are against these stuff, either.
Stop pressuring yourself to keep up with the certain fashion that people are getting into. There’s no standard. There’s no mark to hit so that you can enter the church, cause we don’t do fashion show in the church. We worship God in the church.
And it doesn’t mean that we are ought to wear all those statement/verse shirts with printed 2 Corinthian 5:17 on it, or the ones that boldly says “I AM A CHILD OF GOD” kind of shirt. Scratch that. That’s not what this meant.
Because again, it’s not about what we wear but about where our hearts stand.
And God tells us to wear our hearts should stand, by wearing humility (1 Peter 5:5), fear of God (Proverbs 31:30), renewed mind (Romans 12:2), godliness and good works (1 Tim 2:10), and faith, love, and holiness with self control (1 Tim 2:15).
When we learn modesty in the spiritual way, then it follows that we can learn modesty in the physical way. In a way that we do not cause any man to sin and stumble in the eyes of God (Romans 14), and we do not take the glory that’s due Him.
You see, our body is the temple of the Holy Spirit. We are the children of the royalty, children of the light. And we know we’re wearing the right clothes by knowing that in that get up, God is glorified.
So dress accordingly.
What’s your Sundays best attire? Will it not cause any man/woman to sin? Will wearing these clothes places your attention more to yourself? Will it not make you uncomfortable, such that will distract you from hearing God’s word?
[Disclaimer: I am not attacking certain kinds of people and I’m not writing this because I am perfect. I too have flaws (actually a lot of them) and these are only what God has been telling me about being modest for the past few days. And this is what I’ve learned.]