Sunday, May 1, 2011

Clothing and Christian Women

Hey, it's Caroline!  I've been thinking about this post for a while and a discussion this morning prompted me to write out my thoughts on this topic.  Feel free to comment on whether or not you agree or disagree!  And I'm also proud to announce that all of the pictures in this post were taken for me by my dear friend, Annie.  Go check out her blog, Annie Pliego Photography, and leave her some comment love!  The sweet girl in the photos is her little sister, Isabel.  :)




1.  The quality of being modest; freedom from vanity, boastfulness, etc.
2.  Regard for decency of behavior, speech, dress, etc.
3.  Simplicity, moderation

Modesty is a widely discussed and debated topic among Christians; especially among women.  There are extremes on both sides of the spectrum, and it's our duty to think carefully in regards to how we should dress.

As I was discussing this post, with my mother, and how I should go about writing it, she suggested that I research what the word "modesty" even means!  I didn't expect it would be what it was, to say the least.

When Christian women think of modesty, they think of a way of dress that covers one's body in all the places that should remain private.  However, it's actually much more than that.  Only briefly in the definition of the word is the term "dress" mentioned.  What, then, does this mean?  How are we to be truly modest?

I believe that modesty is not only a covering of our bodies, but it is also a mindset.  Thinking and praying about this post for a while, I have even had a change of heart in what I believe about fashion, as well!  

Modest dress should not be shocking or flashy.  

1 Timothy 2:9
"Likewise also that women should adorn themselves in respectable apparel, with modesty and self-control."

If we look at the definition of modesty and this verse combined, the word "self-control" really points out what many pass over.  As modest women, should strive for, as the dictionary states, simplicity and moderation.  Does this mean we can't wear something fun and different and colorful?  Absolutely not!  

Phillipians 4:8
"Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things."

John 5:44
"How can you believe, when you receive glory from one another and edo not seek the glory that comes from fthe only God?

So the key, here, is to examine our hearts.  Are we wearing these clothes on our backs to seek attention, or are we wearing them because we truly find them to be pure, lovely, commendable, and excellent?

This is where the extremes come into play.  There are many Christian women that believe in only wearing long skirts and long sleeved shirts, and other than this code they do not believe in any sort of care for our outer appearance.

I fully agree with these women in that the inner beauty is far more important.  However, these outfits can actually be, in a sense, immodest!  When a non-Christian sees one of these women, it draws attention.  My mom made an excellent point in saying that when these women go to the beach in their long-sleeved swim suits, they draw far more attention to themselves than a girl in a simple one-piece!

In that sense, dressing in a way so far distant from the culture can in itself be immodest.  Now, there's another extreme.  A lot of Christians today have so separated themselves from those women that they wear what they like, so long as they don't look cheap and so long as they don't show too much skin.  This idea can be acceptable if done correctly, but it's dangerous.  A girl could be covering up her body in purple sweatpants, but if they have "Juicy Couture" emblazoned across the behind, that's also a form of immodesty.  It draws attention to a part of the body that should not be put on display.

Modesty cannot be a set of laws.  Rules such as "skirts can only be so short so that they reach tip of the middle finger" or "shirt straps have to be at least 3/4 in. thickness" really do not get to the heart of the matter.  Certainly, covering our bodies is important!  But when it becomes distracting to be so entirely covered that we separate from the world a very great distance, it is simply another form of immodesty, and can actually prevent us from bringing our message of the Gospel to the world.

In conclusion, my main points are that we must cover our bodies in a way that prevents others, especially boys, from falling into the trap of temptation.  We must do so, however, in a way that does not make us so different from the world that we call attention to ourselves, because that, in and of itself, can be a form of pride.  We must strive to ensure that we are dressing in clothing that is lovely and excellent, but that also displays self-control.

I do hope that this post was something that made you think, and I ask that you please leave a comment below and let me know your thoughts on the issue.  Have a great day!



  1. I fully agree :) Excellent points!

  2. Wow....Wonderful, Carolina. <3

    and i LOVE YOU! I'm SO happy the pictures worked for you. They look just great with this post. :)


  3. Thanks for posting this, Caroline. It's so great to here and learn about dressing and BEHAVING modestly from stylish Christian girls.

  4. those are really good points:) if anyone is interested, this a really good site on the rebelution website that is completely just the results of a poll taken by thousands of christian guys that gives girls a clear picture of what is modest to a guy and what is immodest. thought it really fit with this post, so:) here it is:

  5. Lauren, thank you! I'm glad you enjoyed it!

    Annie, I love you too! Thank you so much for the pictures. Isabel perfectly compliments the idea I was trying to convey, I think. She's just so sweet!

    Caroline, thank you! I definitely think it's an issue that isn't discussed nearly enough among Christian girls.

    Aubry, thank you! I looked over that and it's certainly interesting. It definitely makes on think more about the clothes she wears, no?

  6. Oh, I totally agree with you!

    Thanks for this post, it will help me think more about what I put on in the morning!
    I loved it.


  7. Thanks, Caroline. Those are great points and I completely agree.

    This is a clip my mom sent me awhile back. Its very good.