A call to modesty << why I believe what I do : part 1 >>
As you and a close friend are chatting over coffee at a local coffee shop, she asks you a question. “I know you dress modestly, but isn’t it hard when those around you don’t? Why exactly do you dress modestly?” You knew this question would come up eventually, so you begin to explain the importance of modesty, why we are called to modesty, and that modesty is a matter of the heart.
<< Is modesty important? >> When you dress modestly, you are helping the young men (also your brothers-in-Christ) to keep their hearts and minds pure. Job 30:31 says, “I have made a covenant with my eyes; Why then should I look upon a young woman?”
It is an understatement that men have a huge difficulty when it comes to looking at ladies. Why make it difficult for godly men, who have made the same covenant with their eyes as Job, by wearing seductive articles of clothing? This does not just apply to young women. The same concept applies to young men as well. Many Christian ladies have also made a covenant not to look at a young man. Why would you continue wearing shirts with cut-off sleeves, or your baggy pants down to your ankles? Just as tight, seductive clothing can cause young men to stumble, sleeveless shirts and pants to your ankles draw the wrong attention from young ladies as well.
Modesty also reflects to others your desire to be different, and the decision to dress modestly could be a great way to share your faith. I’m not saying that you should dress modestly in order to get attention, because then you are doing it for the wrong reason. Still, remember that you may be the only “Bible” people may ever read! When others see that you don’t dress like others around you, they will start looking at other aspects of your life, and may eventually come up to you and ask what is different about you.
Another benefit of dressing modestly is the respect that you gain from those around you. When you dress modestly, it seems to challenge men and young men (specifically) to treat you like a lady and give you the respect you deserve. Again, I’m not telling you to dress in order to get respect; I am simply telling you that respect can be a blessing that comes along with the decision to dress modestly.
<< Are we called by God to modesty? >> God desires His children to dress modestly. We read His command in Deuteronomy 22:5, “A woman shall not wear man’s clothing, nor shall a man put on a woman’s clothing; for whoever does these things is an abomination to the Lord your God.”
If God did not care about what we wear or how we dress, then He would nothave added that commandment in the Bible!
1 Timothy 2:9 says, “Likewise, I want women to adorn themselves with proper clothing, modestly and discreetly, not with braided hair and gold or pearls or costly garments.”
Paul wrote to Timothy and specifically told him that the women were to wear “proper clothing, modestly and discreetly.” “What is proper clothing?” you may ask. Proper clothing would be a skirt to the knee cap (or longer), a ¾” sleeve shirt, a v-neck shirt with a lace camisole (with adjustable straps) underneath, flats (instead of high heels), etc. Like I said before, if modesty was not important to God, then He would not have had it added in the Bible.
As women (and men), we are to obey the call to modesty…not because Alisha is calling us, but because God has called us!
<< Modesty is a matter of the heart? >> To dress modestly your heart has to be ready, otherwise you won’t be happy, and you will easily go back to wearing seductive clothing. I am not saying the devil will never come to you and try to make you discontent in obeying the call to modesty, because he will. The devil will always bring thoughts to your head, reminding you that “wearing pants is a whole lot more convenient” or “if you wear pants, you will have more friends” or “wearing pants will make you ‘fit in.’” The devil does not want you to obey the call to modesty, because when you do you are a step closer to conforming to Christ.
God wants your heart to be in the right place when you obey His call to modesty. He wants you to do it because He’s called you to it, not because you have to. He wants it to be your conviction. He does not want this to be the conviction of your conservative friend, as you just follow suit. He wants you to dress modestly for Him, because He commands you to do so.
If your heart is not ready to obey the call to modesty, then God does not want you to heed the call. He wants your heart to be ready. Just remember, God does not call the equipped, He equips the called! If He’s calling you, He will make your heart ready for what He’s calling you to do.
<< Is modesty required? >> To be honest, I wish it was, because then then the world would be closer to being a better place! But to answer the question: no, modesty is not required. You will not go to Hell if you decide that you do not need to obey the call to modesty! You only go to Hell if you refuse to heed His call to Salvation (but that’s a completely different topic).
God does not force anyone to dress modestly. He wants a willing heart to obey His call!
So, after you finish answering your friend’s questions, she seems to understand all you said. As you two go your own ways, you silently pray that God will convict her, and that He will help her obey the call to modesty