We need to face a sad truth-modesty has become a bad taste in many women's vocabularies. And understandably so, it's been shoved down their throats and used as a measurement of how "holy" someone is. Many women feel bitter at the very sight of a skirt! Does it have to remain this way? I don't believe so. God has used this blog in my own life in a very positive way-over the course of 2009/2010, He convicted me (by way of seeing how damaging it can be) that I was being too legalistic when it comes to modesty. I regret having posted comments on a modesty website that I wish I could take back. They weren't rude, or intentionally hurtful-but in a way they were. To make a long story short, girls were posting pictures of outfits I personally didn't feel were modest. It got into constant arguments, to the point that it was getting mean. I finally decided to no longer participate in the website anymore. Then, a couple years later I realized that I was in the wrong. I shouldn't have been judging the outfits on how "modest" they were.
I've met so many young ladies who are truly striving for Biblical modesty through my blog, it's so encouraging! And through God's gentle hand (as well as help from all of you!) I discovered the differences between Biblical modesty, and legalistic modesty. I'd like to share a few of them, in the form of myth, versus truth.
Myth #1: The Bible doesn't say anything about modesty!
Truth #1: The Bible does have something to say about modesty! Check out this verse:
- "Likewise also that women should adorn themselves in respectable apparel, with modesty and self-control, not with braided hair and gold or pearls or costly attire." 1 Timothy 2:9 (Emphasis mine)
Myth #2: The Bible clearly states that we shouldn't braid our hair or put on jewelry!
- "Do not let your adorning be external—the braiding of hair and the putting on of gold jewelry, or the clothing you wear— but let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God's sight is very precious." 1 Peter 3:3-4
Truth #2: 1 Peter 3:3-4 isn't saying that you shouldn't braid your hair or put on jewelry! This verse (in simple terms) is saying we shouldn't make our hair and necklace more important than our relationship with God, or our character. God cares much more about where our hearts are, then what we're wearing (that comes after the heart).
Myth #3: No one judges your character on how you dress!
Turth #3: Check out this verse:
"And behold, the woman meets him, dressed as a prostitute, wily of heart." Proverbs 7:10 (emphasis mine)
Obviously this woman was judged on how she dressed! If you think about it, people are judged almost instantaneously by their apparel. We glean, age, character, cleanliness and so much more from clothing! So dressing modestly (or immodestly) does affect how people view us.
Myth #5: Biblical modesty is a list or rules and regulations.
Truth #5: The Bible never clearly states specifics regarding what is modest and what isn't. My personal belief is that each individual should choose what is modest apparel for them, it's between you and God! Who are we to say that a certain item isn't modest? In the end, we all have to give an account for the choices we make in this life, including how we dress.
Myth #6: God doesn't like beauty-we should wear paper bags on our heads.
Truth #6: This is the most ridiculous of myths, have you looked around you lately?! God loves beauty! He displays it all the time-in nature, people and weather! Just the other day I was driving down the road, admiring the changing colors and almost felt like applauding! It was stunning, the yellow, the red and brown set against a deep blue backdrop.
On top of all that, the Bible has quite a few references (I won't mention all of them) to physical beauty:
- "He was bringing up Hadassah, that is Esther, the daughter of his uncle, for she had neither father nor mother. The young woman had a beautiful figure and was lovely to look at, and when her father and her mother died, Mordecai took her as his own daughter." Esther 2:7
- "To bring Queen Vashti before the king with her royal crown, in order to show the peoples and the princes her beauty, for she was lovely to look at. " Esther 1:11
- "And he sent and brought him in. Now he was ruddy and had beautiful eyes and was handsome. And the Lord said, “Arise, anoint him, for this is he." 1 Samuel 16:12
- "So he left all that he had in Joseph's charge, and because of him he had no concern about anything but the food he ate. Now Joseph was handsome in form and appearance." Genesis 39:6
I would love to hear your thoughts on this! Go ahead and leave me a comment! (don't forget to include any myths and truths you'd like to add!)