A Plea For Modesty

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Also, the women are to dress themselves in modest clothing, with decency and good sense…   1 Timothy 2:9

In shopping for my daughter’s clothes, I am reminded of how little attention is paid towards modesty anymore. Almost everything is so shorter and revealing. Nothing is left to the imagination. Finding modest clothes is quite a task!

Women have to fight to not be looked at as sex objects but finding clothes that don’t give off that vibe is difficult. I come off as an old prune when I talk hand length and no cleavage to my daughter. I am ok with that though.  I don’t back down though because I know how men think and how they will see my daughter if they are invited to do so by her outfit. If any dad is ok with that then he is not much of a dad.

Here is what every woman needs to realize. Lust is an issue. An issue for both men and women but especially for men. I know this because I am one and I talk to men often about this issue. Temptation faces us at every turn and the struggle is real. Jesus addressed this issue:

“You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘You shall not commit adultery.’  But I say to you that whoever looks at a woman to lust for her has already committed adultery with her in his heart.  If your right eye causes you to sin, pluck it out and cast it from you; for it is more profitable for you that one of your members perish, than for your whole body to be cast into hell.  And if your right hand causes you to sin, cut it off and cast it from you; for it is more profitable for you that one of your members perish, than for your whole body to be cast into hell.  Matthew 5:27-30

God is adamant that his creation will not be reduced to an object of lust. He takes it seriously enough to tell us to pluck out your eye or cut off our hand if need be to avoid sinning! I rarely meet a man who does not struggle with lust and those who tell me they don’t… I assume they struggle with lying as well. Our struggle is not helped by the short skirts and shorts and the revealing tops. I am not a woman so I enter dangerous territory here but I can only assume this is why women would wear revealing clothes… to be noticed.  Well, unfortunately men are noticing and they are falling into sin for it.

I don’t know if women know this but men are reducing them to their looks when they wear revealing clothes. Men don’t care about their IQ, personality, or spiritual health in the moment. Men’s attention has been moved to her body and she becomes an object of lust for him. There is no respect or genuine care. It is about animal instinct in that moment. Not healthy for the woman or the man. Here is what I believe: What you wear says something about who you are. To think it doesn’t is irrational.

We want to teach our daughter about the importance of modesty as a Christian. We want to teach our daughter that her body is meant only for her husband. It is not to be on display for men to notice. She is not an object but a person worthy of respect and care. She is much more than her body type. We will preach this to our daughter. My wife will model this for her through her modest dress. I will continue to give affection to my daughter (even though she acts awkward when I do) and hope that she will not feel the need to find value from other men because she is receiving it from her daddy.

Now a disclaimer here: there is a big difference in making oneself look attractive versus making oneself look seductive. If you are modest in your dress and yet a man finds you attractive that is on him if he takes it too far with his eyes and thoughts. You shouldn’t degrade your beauty. God made you how you are. That is much different than you giving the man a head start into his imagination by revealing half the puzzle. I think a woman knows the difference if she is honest with herself.

I pray that parents will talk more about modesty with their kids. That dads will teach their sons not to reduce women to objects of lust. That women will model for their daughters how a woman shook dress. I pray Christian women will not buy into the cultural conditioning that sex is the only way to be truly appealing. That they will be courageous and hold each other accountable.

Dressing revealing is not harmless fun. It is tempting and leads others to commit sin. God is definitely not ok with it and neither should we be as His people.

 

Repentance is not being sorry for the things you have done, but being sorry you are the kind of person that does such things.

The Deeper Journey by Robert Mulholland Jr.

Repentance is something we don’t talk about much in the church but it was the appropriate response to our sin in the Bible. Repentance is not just about turning away from a particular sin. That is a band aid fix. Repentance is about going deeper, to the root of the weed and pulling from there. It’s about Jesus confronting our love affair with sin and our attitude of rebellion. That’s where God wants to do his work. He does not just want to tackle lust, anger, laziness, and other sins that stir up in us; He wants to bring the whole operation down on its head and remove our love for sin and motive for rebellion. That is the work of repentance in us.