Friday, March 29, 2013

The Heart of Modesty

Ever since doing this post, 5 Questions to Help you get Dressed, I have wanted to expound a little more on the issue of modesty. Growing up, I was raised with standards of modesty, but, to be honest, until I got married, I never really completely understood the "whys" behind the rules. Some of the books that we read for our pre-marital counseling helped shed some light on the issue for me as well as talking with my husband. It wasn't that I was stupid before that, just naive about a lot of things. I think there are a lot of young women out there who are just like I was and just don't realize the effect that their clothes can have. If they did, I think they would look at the issue differently. In the rest of this post are some things that I would like to share with you that I have learned about modesty.

First of all, no matter your size or shape, people DO notice you! One of my biggest excuses when I was younger was that I was overweight, and therefore, no guys ever looked at me "that way". First off, I was a little skewed in my body image. I may have weighed more that I wanted too then, but I would love to be that weight again now! Second, if your clothes are too tight, or show too much skin, it DOES NOT MATTER how big or small you are, people, especially men, are going to notice. Nobody can use the fact that they think they are too fat or too skinny as an excuse.

Second, you are just as responsible for a man lusting after you as he is if you dress in an immodest way, even if you do it in ignorance. The Bible calls it "defrauding our brother" and it means that if we dress in a way that encourages men to look at us in a way they shouldn't, then we are sinning as well. Now please, hear what I am NOT saying. I am NOT saying that men are not responsible for their own thoughts and actions. It is just as wrong for them to look as it is for a woman to invite them to. I AM saying that the responsibility belongs to both parties. An exception to this would be all the perverts in the world. If you are dressing and acting in a modest and respectful manner and a man still lusts after you, that is his problem, not yours.

Finally, and most importantly, modesty begins in your heart. It is something that should not just govern what you wear, but how you act and speak, and even think as well. The idea behind modesty is that there are things that should be kept for marriage alone, and a person (man or woman) who realizes this, will do their very best to guard those treasures to be enjoyed as God intended. When I stopped associating standards for modesty with "rules made up by men to take the fun out of life" and started seeing living in modesty as a way to protect my marriage and honor God, it was then that I was able to fully embrace it. I started dressing a certain way, not because someone else thought it was right, but because I knew it was what God wanted me to do! It was His plan and best for my life.

There are a lot of things in this life, and I believe this is one of them, that when we die we will look back on and wish we had done better at. We will realize that what we thought was so important, really wasn't. Sure, I understand that finding modest clothes on the racks of stores today can be a challenge. I'm right there with you. I still want to look cute and put together and I don't think there is anything wrong with that. But, I found that when I embraced modesty, finding cute and modest stuff (or fixing it so that it worked) became a whole lot easier. If you find yourself struggling with this issue at some point in your life, just do a little soul searching and talk to God about it. I think you will find that if you give this to God, knowing that you are pleasing Him will make you a whole lot happier than what you give up ever did.

A great style blog to check out by a woman that does a fabulous job at both dressing modestly and beautifully is KRISTINA J. She has some great tutorials and outfit posts and is even coming out with a book soon.

I would love to hear your thoughts about modesty in the comments!


  1. I appreciate your article. As a pastor's wife and mother of 2 sons ages 21 & 20 this has long been a struggle for me to get women to understand. Modesty does need to come from the heart, if they are just doing it to be "compliant" with the preacher's "rules", it never works. Helping ladies fall in love with Christ is key so that they will want to please Him then helping them understand the effect it truly has on guys.

  2. Excellent article~ I'm not a pastor's wife or anything, but I do believe that dressing modestly is a great way to protect my marriage, and to honor God. Like you I didn't used to think so...I just followed the fashion, but now I def march to the beat of my own drummer when it comes to dressing but still keeping that adorability factor! Thanks for the article!

  3. I was encouraged by your heartfelt words regarding modesty. Often I feel alone in my Biblical views. I was also delighted to get to know you and your dear family last week. I was surprised when you referenced Kristina's blog...we know her and her family personally! Praying for you as you continue the long journey to Nicaragua.


I would love to know what you think or see pictures of anything you make from what you see here!