Tuesday, September 28, 2010

My Personal Thoughts on Modesty

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{The picture above is of my little sister at a park the other day. Isn't she pretty?}

Thank you to everyone who offered me suggestions on my last post! I read and enjoyed each of them!

I realized this morning that I have never posted any of my own thoughts on modesty, and seeing as I have nothing else to say (well, unless you would rather hear about how my piano lesson went this morning or what I'm learning about in school...) I feel this is a most opportune time to do such a post.

First of all, as a little background info.... I only wear skirts and dresses, but I am not required to. I am the only one in my family who never wears pants or jeans in public, and it is a choice of mine. I have had so many people say "Do your parents force you to dress like that?!?!?"

I started going dresses-only about 4 years ago, when I was 12. It was about that time we started going to Amish country, and became a little (eensy-weensy) bit *obsessed* with the Amish and Mennonites. One thing that really struck me about the Amish and Mennonites were their clothes. Not only did I think the dresses were really pretty, but I thought it was interesting how their clothes identified them with something. It identified them with being Amish. And with that came automatic assumptions about them. Perhaps those assumptions were not always true, but it caused me to evaluate what sort of assumptions people were making about me.

Which brings me to the first reason why I choose to dress modestly. You tell the world what you want to be by the way you dress. I am certainly not saying that you ARE the way you dress, but the way you dress is sending a message about who you are striving to be. Like it or not, people will judge you by the way you are dressed. And when people see me, I want them to know something about me. I want them to know that I am a Christian, and that I am dedicated to following Christ.

Does dressing this way in any way actually make me a Christian??? Certainly not! It is only God's grace that can truly make save you! The outside is merely a reflection of what I am striving to be. But I want it to be an accurate description. I want my clothing to be a testimony of God's grace in my life.

Now, I would like to clear something up that I think is often assumed by many people. I don't wear dresses to be modest. I wear them because I like them, and I think they are pretty and different. I say this, because I don't think you have to wear dresses or skirts to be modest. I believe you can be just as modest in a pair of pants as you can be in a skirt. I know many of you won't agree with me on this, but that's OK. We can have different opinions. Modesty is a 50/50 deal. You can be covered from head to toe, and not be modest. Then again, it is not all about the inward aspect. You can't go to extremes here.

Yes, it is incredibly important that your modesty comes from a heart that wants to serve God, and your outward modesty is an overflow of that. However, good intentions on the inside are not all that matter. You have to actually cover up.

But truly, modesty is not a set of legalistic rules. "Oh, if it is above this point, it isn't modest."
"If it isn't a skirt or a dress, it isn't modest". I don't believe that.

Now, there are times when skirts are not as modest as pants. Take jumping on a trampoline, for example. Now, I know many of you may be saying "I don't regularly come across the obstacle of having to jump on a trampoline". I know it's a bit rare, but I actually do come across this often enough. You see, almost every time my youth group is at anyone's house, there is trampoline jumping involved. And do you know how difficult it is to modestly jump on a trampoline in a skirt??? It's tricky business, friends. Does that mean it is wrong to jump on a trampoline? I would say not. But you must do it modestly.

I want to get to the second reason I dress modestly. It is perhaps the more obvious reason, but I want to dress modestly so others are not caused to sin by my clothes. I don't want to just throw myself at everyone. You can be immodest in more than just revealing clothing, too. Clothes that are too flashy are just saying "HEY! Look at me!". I want to be a young lady. I want to be treated like a lady by other people. I respect those who are dressed modestly.

I want to say one more thing about modest clothing in closing. I believe God teaches and sanctifies each of us at different rates, and realizing this, I don't want to judge others who dress certain ways. There are people at my church who wear clothing that I would personally feel uncomfortable wearing, but that certainly doesn't mean I am more "spiritual" than they. There are many things I would love to learn from these people! I do not ever want to be legalistic or judgmental, because I certainly don't have it all "figured out". We are all in the process of learning, and God is changing us to be more like him. So for me to say to someone else, "You aren't meeting my standard of modesty" is wrong. I don't want you to feel that way while you are reading this post. God will show you what He has for you in His time. Dresses only isn't for everyone, and that's fine.


11 comments:

  1. Allison, that was beautifully written, and I must say I agree wholeheartedly. Thank you for saying this, because I think more people need to know this.

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  2. Great post! I love what you have to say. Keep it up girl!

    Genevieve

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  3. Wow, well done! :)
    You're right. Pants vs Skirts - sometimes one is more modest than the other in certain situations.
    I try to dress as modestly as I can and I also choose to wear pants. But I never show clevage or wear really short skirts/shorts because I think it is immodest. I also like skirts / dresses too because they make me feel more feminine! :)

    www.modelmumma.blogspot.com

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  4. Well said!

    You know, I always just wore a pair of shorts when I jump on a trampoline! :D

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  5. Hi it is Abby from Abby's World (Child Of Grace) and i followed your blog and i was wondering if you could follow mine..... by the way i love wearing skirts too :)

    ~Abby~

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  6. Allison, I agree with you, that you can be just as modest in pants as you can in a skirt. In fact, I agree with the whole post, and I want to thank you for being so careful about what you wear. As you said, we Christian ladies want to do our best to keep our brothers in Christ from sinning. I am a huge fan of skirts and dresses, and would only wear them all the time if I could. Right now, I have more jeans than I do dresses, but hopefully that will change soon! Thank you for having such a sweet heart about modesty. :)

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  7. Very good post! I'm so glad girls in this world can stand up for what is right! I'm going to share this with my many friends. I do agree with everything you said, except slightly leaning with the Pant's I do agree you can be more Modest sometimes in a pair of pants then a shorter skirt, but I ask of you ladies, when you do where pants think about it before you do, and remember it is YOUR conviction, not other ladies. about what you wear!


    Blessings Dear Allison.
    Katie

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  8. You said above that" I believe you can be just as modest in a pair of pants". I believe the bible clearly states that to wear the apparel of men(such as pants) is a curse and abomination to God.I don't claim to stand in judgement of you or anybody else who holds this view. The rest of this post was awesome. May God bless you,and keep up the good post's.

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  9. I agree. I used to HATE skirts and dresses. Pants just seamed easer-until I found denim skirts about a year ago. I wear them all the time now. Sure, I still wear jeans, but I try to substitute shorts for skirts. I feel much more modest. :) ~Samantha

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  10. This post is wonderfully said! My family is the same way! We also believe that pants are fine, but long skirts and dresses is what we believe in more so because of your reasons, and because this way you are not being judged by your body shape but you are more known by your personallity. It is so nice to see that there are other people out there that believe the same things as myself! Thank you for posting this!
    God Bless,

    ~Emmi-Joy

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  11. Woww..its totally wonderfull. For your info i,m an Indonesian and i never visit America. I just accept what Holliwood show to me. So i just think that every western girl like to be look sexy and wear short clothing or thight pants. My assumption was western are do not have a faith of God, or do but not obey the rule of the God. But now i'm noticed that i was wrong!!! Thre are some faithful girl in America. And they still keep their polite and kind heart. Truly Regards TIKA :) :)

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