This is from Abbey – she’s a big fan of Project Inspired and asked if she could share these word about dressing modestly with us. Enjoy! – Nicole
“Mom, does this outfit look modest enough on me?”
This is a question that I often find myself asking my mother. This is also a question that you should learn how to ask your mother (or aunt, uncle, sister, brother, dad or a trusted friend) without feeling awkward. How can we be modest in a world filled with mostly immodest celebrities, singers, dancers, TV shows, models and everyday teenagers? What IS modesty? Well, you will soon find out!
To tell you the truth, I wasn’t always hooked onto modesty, thinking, ‘Why can’t I dress like everyone else does?’ When my mom first told me about modesty and how there were certain standards that I needed to have when it came to what I wore, I thought, “Is there something wrong with what I’m wearing now?” What I didn’t realize was how a guy’s mind works, no matter what the age of the guy. So mom sat me down and gently started telling me how the male mind was wired.
I remember her saying something like this:
“Honey, when a guy looks at a pie plate, he starts to envision a hot, juicy apple pie in the plate. And then he can smell the aroma of apples, and his taste buds start to tingle with the anticipation of biting into the pie. And then his mouth starts to water as he can almost taste the pie in his mouth. It’s the same idea when a guy looks at a young girl who is showing off a little skin. He starts to see things that aren’t there, things that he shouldn’t be envisioning. That’s why it’s so important to remain covered with clothing and not show off our bodies. There are too many guys out there searching for that ‘hot, juicy apple pie’ in a young girl.”
I was still a little upset that I had to give up some of my clothes, especially some of the ones that I really liked to wear. But once my mom said she would help me clean out my closet, and then we could go to the store on a shopping spree, I got pretty excited. While we cleaned out my closet, my mom and I made three piles: Keep, Give, and Dump.
Into the ‘Keep’ pile went all modest clothes that fit me (obviously I was keeping these clothes!). All clothes that I tried on that were modest, but that didn’t fit me well went in the Give pile (mom and I took these to the city mission on our way to the mall). When we found clothes in my closet that drew attention to certain parts of my body that were showing off my body in some way, they went into the ‘Dump’ pile — which in reality, turned out to be the garbage can!
So you may be thinking, how do you define modest or modesty?
The dictionary definition for modest is ‘moderate; decent’. Moderate means to ‘keep within reasonable limits’, or ‘one who avoids extreme actions’. A definition of decent is ‘respectable, moral, in good tastes; becoming proper; suitable, virtuous’. If we want to be respected as woman, and not be pushed around because of what we wear, we must wear respectable clothes that are kept within reasonable boundaries!
As God’s precious children, we need to be known as virtuous women who obey our Heavenly Father’s laws for how we dress and how we act towards others. Modesty is the first place to start when you want to be a virtuous woman.
Virtuous can mean ‘completely pure’, which goes right along with being modest. When you are dressing modestly, you are not bringing attention to your body’s figure. When you dress to bring attention to your body, you may not realize this, but you are actually increasing the chance that guys are thinking lustful thoughts when they look at you. If you don’t want to be thought of as a piece of pie that a guy really wants, eats, and the next day forgets all about, then dress modestly. If you want to be known as a piece of God’s own handiwork, important, amazing, beautiful and completely unpredictable, then you need to dress modestly. Get the picture?
When you think of modesty, what do you picture in your mind? This can be a hard question. There is no right or wrong answer for it. When some girls think of modesty, they think of a woman that always wears skirts, pants or capris and a loose fitting t-shirt. Some girls think modesty means never wearing makeup. Still, others think it means wearing dresses that look like they’re from the 1800s!
This is what modesty means to me:
Staying within the boundaries that you have set for yourself, never crossing the red line and always living the way that God would want you to!
Now, this does NOT mean that you can make boundaries for yourself that have immodest ways in them. This is what living as a Christian girl really means. Another thing about making boundaries for yourself is that others such as a friend, parent or an older sibling also needs to agree that what you’re wearing is modest.
Here are a few tips to help you get started on your modest wardrobe:
- Find some ‘A’ tanks or ‘boyfriend’ tanks, the long ribbed tank tops that guys wear, and layer with them. They are great to tuck into low-rising pants and for layering under low shirts — and they come in just about every color!
- Always go clothes shopping with your mother or with a friend of yours that has the same mindset on modesty as you do. When you find something that you would like to buy, you can check with that person to see if it passes her modesty guidelines.
- Steer away from name brands when possible and shop at more conveniently-priced locations. Many brand name clothing companies actually have items of lesser quality than off-brand names!
- You can also wear pretty dresses and skirts but just make sure they hit the knees- or just at little above. But no shorter!
Remember that the purpose of modesty is not to suck all the joy out of life but to help you remain pure for your King and for your future spouse! And it can be a lot more fun than you might think. Give it a try!
Here are a few sites that have rather modest clothing options that I like to shop at!
http://www.downeastbasics.com/ (everyday clothing/ swimsuits)
http://www.beautifullymodest.com/ (dresses/formal wear)
http://www.sakurarose.com/ (everyday clothing)
From Nicole: If you have any articles or things you want me to publish, send them to me here and I just might post it! God Bless.