Friday, October 9, 2009

My Guidelines For Modesty

I believe that a woman should dress modesty and feminine. Now the Bible gives great help in talking about modesty and femininity. And the book 'Dressing for the Lord' by Bro. David Cloud is great for explaining and understanding what the Bible says. I still plan to do a post using that book, but a friend still has it. So I thought I'd go ahead and do this post. Some of y'all asked what my personal guidelines for modesty are, and I'd love to tell you. I'm going to try and explain why as well, but if I don't explain it well then just let me know. : ) First, I'm going to basically be telling what I believe is modest for a lady, or what I wear. Then I'll try to explain what I believe is right for a guy.

I do not believe that there is such a thing as a modest pair of pants or shorts, so I don't wear them. To say I only wear skirts and dresses leaves a bit too much room because there are more immodest skirts made then there are modest ones. I believe a skirt/dress should be loose, long, and flowing. Long being at least below the knee, but I wear mine almost to my ankle if not touching it. A long and flowing skirt covers, and in a sense hides, what is not meant to be seen by anyone but your spouse. And pants don't, they may not show skin but they show the outline of your body. As far as shirts, I believe they should also not be tight, see thru, or low cut. Once again, a loose and modest shirt will be covering/hiding what is not meant to been seen. As far as pajamas, well I have a hard time with this. I know many people wear pajama pants or shorts, and in the privacy of your own bedroom that's fine. But I don't believe its right for me to wear pants or shorts unless they are under a skirt that is just as long as I would normally wear or if the nightgown is as long as a skirt. I wear pants under my skirts most all the time in the winter, and in the summer I will sometimes wear shorts under my skirt if I feel it's needed for something I'm doing. Now for my really weird spot... :) Culottes. Of all the styles and kinds of culottes I have seen or owned over the years, I can only think of two that were truly modest. I own one pair now that really does look like a skirt and even when walking you can't tell that it isn't. And I don't mind wearing them. But most of the time culottes just look like a baggy pair or shorts, and shorts are not modest for a lady. I could probably keep going on naming things I do and don't wear, but when it comes down to it, I really just have to look in the mirror and ask God if it is modest or not. Do I look like a Christian young lady or am I trying to show off my body? Am I going to have a good testimony for the guys around me or are my clothes going to distract them? Am I pleasing God or Satan?

Now for the guys. The way our world is today, it isn't just the girls who are trying to show off their bodies, the guys are doing it too. Well, I guess what I believe about the ladies pretty much fits for guys too. Modest pants for a guy should not be tight, and shorts should be below the knee. Shirts should not be tight or see thru. And this thing about guys taking their shirts off in the heat or something...that is not modest. If it is immodest for a girl to have her shirt off then it's immodest for a guy too.

It's not just about what items of clothing you wear, but the style too. BUT, I'll get into that in the next post on modesty because if I start now I'll never finish this thing! lol I know I have some rather different views on this but it's what God has convicted my heart about. Don't base your convictions off of mine or even your parents (tho you do need to obey theirs while in their house). You have to go before God and ask him to show you what is right for you. For years I lived by my dad's standards for modesty and doing just what he asked of me. When I finally asked God to show me what he wanted for me, it all changed. I have a much better understanding of modesty and these are no longer my dad's standards, they are mine.


Jennifer said...

Great post! I recently did a post on modesty myself;)

Sisters in Christ said...

Great post!

Marissa and Andrea said...

Thanks for sharing, Katie!

Paulina said...

Great post! My parents would always encourage me to be modest, but they never enforced it nor did they set up guidelines. Now, my modesty standard is a lot different from theirs in that it is more strict! I prefer skirts that reach to my ankles, but I will wear skirts that are slightly higher but still well below the knee. Shirts are the hard part! Even if I wear a cami underneath, sometimes that cami will not cover everything! So now I have to adjust my standards and buy only high necked shirts that don't require camis.

Katie said...

Glad y'all enjoyed the post!

And Paulina, I completely agree. It is harder to find modest shirts then it is skirts. Shirts are probably what I battled the most. I always wore a skirt, but my shirts were not always modest.

Anonymous said...

I don't have any kind of blogger ID at all, which is why I'm using the Anonymous option. I don't have facebook either, I'm a very atypical 17-year-old! :-)

My standards for modesty are actually fairly similar to yours. I don't believe that pants are immodest, but I prefer to wear skirts (well below the knee). We enjoy doing some activities as a family that wouldn't really be appropriate in skirts (rowing, hiking, etc.), and that is really the only time I will ever wear pants. I would estimate that I wear skirts 95% of the time. And all my skirts are probably at least halfway between the knee and the ankle.

For shirts, I usually wear those with necklines that come at least to the collar bone. Probably three quarters of my shirts are that high (or higher, roll necks are really nice when it's cold outside!). None of my others are more than a couple fingerwidths below.

As far as pajamas, I wear long nightgowns because they're comfortable. :-) I usually wear a (long) bathrobe anyway.

I live in the UK, and it's even harder to find modest clothes here. Actually, when we were in the States earlier this year, it seemed like everyone was dressing much more modestly, and it was such a relief. Most of the clothes in the stores over here are overpriced and horribly immodest. I'm so thankful for online shopping (in the sales section)!!


Anonymous said...

Something I forgot to mention before...

I believe that skirts are better than pants, but I don't consider pants to be immodest. However, if I had any culottes at all, I would probably never wear pants.


Anonymous said...

I, too, don't have an account, so I'll have to go "Anonymous" as well. I really enjoyed reading your post. As for me, I do wear pants. Honestly, my biggest thing is trying to find a swimsuit that makes me feel semi-covered when we go to the pool or beach in the summer. I finally found a good solution for myself by buying "sporting" type clothes that still cling somewhat for safety in the water, but don't show nearly anything that a "normal" suit might. Whew -- finally enjoyed myself in the water this summer without feeling like I was swimming in my underwear! I actually had one lady compliment me on my "suit!" My husband also likes that I'm leaving some things for his eyes only -- and has said as much!

Anonymous said...

What do you think about high heels and makeup? If you feel comfortable replying, I'm sure you can just reply in the comment form if you want. We might get an ongoing discussion here! :) I'd be very interested in hearing!

Katie said...

I'd love to get a discussion going here. :)

Makeup: Let me start with this because its a little easier for me to put into words. lol I don't believe that makeup itself is wicked, I just think that people often used way too much of it! Phil. 4:5 says "Let your moderation be known unto all men..." and I believe that is a good verse for makeup. If it is used only to enhance your natural beauty then I believe it is fine. But if someone is using it to change who they are then is is not good. So I do wear it sometimes, but only the light and natural tones. I rarely wear it, but when I shouldn't be so much that people notice the makeup before they notice me. Does that make sense?

High Heels: I always used to wear them because I am short and I hate always looking up to people. lol But most heels make a loud noise when you walk, and when someone hears that they will naturally look to see what the noise is coming from. And heels are made to make you walk in a flirty sort of way, you honestly can't help but walk in such a way when you're wearing heels. Thats just how they are made. SO when you're walking in a pair of heels, not only are they loud so then people turn and watch you walk...but then you're walking in such a way that will also grab a guys attention. I'm not saying that I never wear heels...but it depends on the type of heel and how loud they are and such.

Wow, thats Hope it answers your question! And I'd love to hear your opinion. : )

Sharon said...

My opinion? :)
Well my personal opinion is similar to yours with makeup. Very well written! As for high heels, I personally do not have a problem with them. I think they add to the beauty of a lady and give an elegant sort of fashion. Though there are some that are way too high/"sexy," for lack of better words.
However, my parents have currently opted to go against both makeup and high heels so I'm unable to wear either! But when I'm on my own I personally would not mind wearing either. So be thankful that you have the option to wear both if you want to! :)
Just my opinion... :)

Katie said...

I am thankful that I have the option, tho I understand not having it. lol For many years I wasn't allowed to wear either. : )

I do understand what you mean about heels tho. That is why I do wear them sometimes. I believe that if they are worn at the right time and with the right outfit they can be very becoming. : )

Anonymous said...

Great! I have always had a strong conviction on modesty and when I got married, I discussed things in detail with my husband because I wanted to be sure he was happy with what I wore. Talking to him made me realised just how naive I was about how men think and I’m ashamed to realise that in the past I must have shown more than I intended even when I was following my own idea of modesty, so now I’m much more careful. For me its about honouring my husband, but for you in a way it’s even more important because you are unmarried so you are honouring your future husband !

You do need to be very careful with underwear not only to make sure it covers you really well but also that it doesn’t show. My skirts were always well below the knee but now I always wear tights and unless my skirt is lined a slip and I don’t wear a tops / dresses without at least small sleeves, you’d be surprised what you show from the side and top. I’m large ish on top so I’m very careful about my bra (and the straps) and if I’m worried about the neckline I wear a camisole. Personally I’m okay with a modest one-piece swimsuit, but cover up with a dress as soon as you're out of the water. I wear a nightgown, I guess pyjamas are okay but the main thing to remember is that whatever you wear its underwear so cover up when you get up if there is anyone to see.

For me heels and make up are okay as long as they are discrete, they shouldn’t look like you are trying to draw attention and makeup shouldn’t really show.

Hope that helps.

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