Friday, February 25, 2011

Our Modest Taste of Dressing

To follow up on my previous post, I would first like to say that I write from my human heart.  I am not the most eloquent with words and may not speak with love and gentleness all the time.  This blog is strictly my opinion, in which will hopefully give support to the many women who are having the same struggles that I am having.......I do realize there are going to be women who come across my posts and think I am attempting to gather flies with vinegar instead of honey.....that isn't the case.  As my Pastor says, when we speak truth of scripture, people who are not in line with that scripture will want to shoot the messenger. 

It has also been brought to my attention that there are other ways to dress than what I mentioned.  I agree, there are many other ways of dressing, ways of dressing according to the world.  The question is, are you dressing in a way that honors God? 

The choices we have made for our family, about how we dress, is between God and us.  I am not here to "push" it on anyone else, that is between God and them.  We dress in a very "prairie" way because that is our taste.  As each woman begins to turn her heart towards dressing modestly, she will begin her own journey.  As a Christian we grow into our own faith, our faith may not look like the faith of our parents....meaning maybe your parents are missionaries and you are not being called as a missionary, but as a writer.  God has called each of us for a different purpose with one goal.  Likewise, our own sense of modesty will be different from one anothers, but should prayerfully be towards one honor God.

In saying all of are some pictures that illustrates our way of dressing.  Since I am usually the one behind the camera, there aren't any pictures of me but my daughter and I dress in the same manner.

The above skirt is one that can be worn with a pretty blouse, sweater.... we both have this style of skirt.

The above jumper is a chore dress for working in the garden, the pasture, with the livestock....

The above dress is worn for church and for town.


The above dress is strictly worn as a chore dress around the has gotten more snug than we care for and now is worn with a shirt over it.  Since the skirt is a great skirt, it will soon be made into just a skirt or with a new bodice if I can find the time with planting season coming on fast.

This is a picture I was able to catch a few years ago when our grand daughter was visiting.  It shows how different our dress was then compared to now.  Now, we would never show that much skin on our arms, not only for modest reasons, but also for reasons of sun exposure.

If you have already been blessed by knowing who Stacy McDonald is a bit of her writing on scriptural modesty.  Below is a link to her whole text.

We as women love to adorn ourselves. Before redemption, many of us “adorned” ourselves in provocative clothing that was purposely intended to entice and seduce men. Some may have adorned themselves in costly jewelry or expensive clothing to pridefully flaunt their wealth or status to others. How does God say we should “adorn” ourselves? “In modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety…” We must honestly ask ourselves (and our husbands!) if this describes our current wardrobe. The Christian woman should not be "focused" on outward appearance. Men are attracted to the female form. If we´re showing ours off, purposely or not, we´re not being modest! Shorts show off legs. Plain and simple. Tight or low blouses show off other things. Pants can also show off the crotch area and the bottom. (I don't know how to say that more politely!) 

Please see the whole text at "Let's Talk Modesty".

I would like to thank you for all of your supportive comments, sometimes we feel so alone as we make this journey and it is SUCH a blessing to hear from others who rally around us, letting us know we are on the right path.  What is SO frustrating is standing in the midst of other professed Christian women that give us so much grief due to our choice to dress modestly.  There have been times, in church, where we are almost verbally attacked because we choose to dress differently and for some reason it offends some other women.  I truly believe that most of the comments and questions are due to curiosity, but most are never said with love and gentleness. 

There is the occasional comical discussion where someone attempts to "liberate" my way of thinking.  They will literally take it upon themselves to feel the need to free my "legalistic" ways.  As if I truly believe that if I dress "holy" enough, that will gain me my salvation.  It is interesting when after I patiently listen to all that they have to say and I respond softly with answers to why we dress the way that we dress, backing it up with scripture, reassuring them that it is something we do to honor God and not to work our way into His good graces, they listen whole-heartedly. 

One of the many things I have learned is when I step out, voicing my convictions and testimony, it gives others the strength to follow.  Never underestimate your ability to speak truth into someone's life!  Your voice may be used by God to say just the right thing to the one person who is waiting to hear it!

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Dressing to Honor God

I have been silent on this matter for long enough.  My heart can remain silent no longer.  My daughter and I wear dresses 99% of the time unless we are riding a horse.  Wearing dresses most of the time has been a gradual process.  I didn't wake up one day and throw everything out only to restock our closets with "modest" clothing.  This issue is something that I have wrestled with God about and He has been gracious to bless me with a Godly perspective on the differences of dressing modestly.

It seems there are several views on how females should dress.

The first and most popular way to dress is to follow worldly fashion with all of its glitz and glam, showing as much skin as possible.  Whatever it takes to catch someones eye and to create the illusion that one is wealthy according to what is in their closet.  Years ago, I was in this category.....sadly enough.  As I mentioned previously, this has been a long process for me.  Even sadder is the fact that this way of dressing is devouring our churches and "Gods People".

The second way of dressing is to follow worldly fashion with all of its glitz and glam, not necessarily showing cleavage or tummy's or thighs.....this style is the skin tight jeans and shirts that might fit a five year old, but a well endowed grown woman is wearing them.  These styles are the ones that leave nothing to the imagination, not one single curve.  What is today's solution to panty lines?  Is it to not wear your clothing too tight?  No, its to change to underclothes that show no lines.  This way of dressing, sadly enough, is also running rampant through our churches today.  This way of dressing fools women into thinking they are dressing modestly due to the fact that they are covered from the neck to below the knees, but the clothes are so extremely form fitting, that skin doesn't have to be showing for men to know exactly how the woman would appear naked. 

A third way of dressing is in a Godly manner, one that honors God by protecting our body and protecting our "brothers in Christ" by wearing clothes that do not attract attention away from being seen as a Godly woman.  As women, we can be biblically modest and feminine without looking like worldly women.  God calls for us to be set apart. We represent Christ and the body of Christ, it breaks my heart to see "Christian" women portraying Christ by dressing in a very provocative way.  It takes a very strong woman to not follow worldly fashions and it begins with the first step.  Seeing it for what it truly is.  When the world looks at us, what do they see?  Do they see another flashy, fashionable woman that is imitating what is splashed all over the TV and magazines and is walking around as a slave to the fashion industry?  Or do they see a well dressed, feminine and beautiful Godly woman that portrays Christ and honors God with her modesty?

 I love wearing dresses, I love to honor God in how I dress and how our daughter dresses.  This is my heart.  Like I mentioned before, it has taken me several years to get to this point, but I am grateful to God for putting my heart through the fire on this subject.  I know where my heart was and how insecure I was when I dressed immodestly.  Now I can't even stand to have writing on my shirts, I refuse to be a billboard for anyone and to draw attention to my chest.  My body is the temple of God, and a God given gift to my husband.  For me to walk around drawing attention to it would disrespect God, disrespect my husband and disrespect myself.

This journey has been very interesting, especially as I go through bins full of clothes we don't wear anymore.  I look at them and think, WOW, I can't believe I ever wore such trash.  Lots of it I have burned instead of donated because I don't want anyone else wearing it either.  Cleaning those clothes out of my house and out of my life was invigorating!  It made a BOLD statement to the "fashion industry" that I wasn't their slave any longer.

So what do we do for clothes?  We sew!!!  We have searched high and low for great patterns and ideas and believe it or not, you can make some of the most beautiful clothing you have ever owned or purchase it custom made for you if you look in the right places.  These things will not be found in any store.....certainly not Wal-Mart.  If you want you or your daughters to look like a prostitute go clothes shopping at Wal-Mart or your local mall (I realize this statement is very strong and not true 100% of the time, however I am always frustrated beyond words when trying to find anything modest in the clothing department there and have quit going altogether for several reasons.  And for those of you wanting to persecute me for being hyper modest, please find someone more worthy of your attention.)  Otherwise learn to sew or search for modest clothing.  There are great sites online for this.  One main site is The King's Daughters.  You can purchase custom made clothing with a variety of fabric choices and you can also purchase patterns.  If you do an online search for "modest clothing", you will be successful in your search.  The first step is to change your perspective, the next step is to change your way of dress to a way that honors God.  God will help you all you have to do is ask for wisdom.  Ask Him to show you His heart on this subject.  That's where I began my journey.

Now I realize that to many women, these are fighting words, but read this quote from Peter Marshall:

I believe women come nearer fulfilling their God-given function in the home than anywhere else. It is a much nobler thing to be a good wife than to be Miss America. It is a greater achievement to establish a Christian home than it is to produce a second-rate novel filled with filth. It is a far, far better thing in the realm of morals to be old-fashioned than to be ultramodern. The world has enough women who know how to hold their cocktails, who have lost all their illusions and their faith. The world has enough women who know how to be smart. It needs women who are willing to be simple. The world has enough women who know how to be brilliant. It needs some who will be brave. The world has enough women who are popular. It needs more who are pure. We need woman, and men, too, who would rather be morally right that socially correct.

This opens up discussion for many topics, most of which have to do with feminism.  I do not have the proper words to firmly state how I believe that the rise of feminism has been the death of the family and is corrupting our churches, however, this is not what this post is about.  For more on the feminism topic, please see the wonderful site of Ladies Against Feminism.

There are some terrific articles on femininity and modesty at Promoting Womanhood. 

This path of honoring God through our dress is not an easy one, it is not for the weak hearted or weak of mind.  Just this Sunday, I was approached at church by another mother.  Our daughters were participating in a song during service and the dress requirement was a white shirt and dark pants.  We obviously do not normally wear pants, and we absolutely refuse to wear them to church.  This other mother approached me with the understanding/assumption that our daughter wasn't going to be able to participate because she didn't have any jeans.  I assured her that our daughter was participating, but the conservation was a bit shocking and hurtful and her demeanor was one of pity.  I held my tongue quite frankly because I was shocked that this mother couldn't even conceive of daughters dressing in a way other than jeans and a T-shirt on a Sunday morning and that to not allow your daughter to dress this way was subjecting them to feeling rejected from the main stream.  My first reaction was shock, than I even felt angry and hurt.  I have to continually remind myself that this journey of modesty is between me and God and that we are all at different stages in our walk with God and that the topics God is convicting me on are different topics for others.  I am not here to judge others or what they think of our family, I am here to be a light and to represent Christ and to take courage in where the Lord is leading us.  If I cave in to what the world says I should dress like, what am I going to tell my Father in Heaven?    

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...