Modesty is a not a popular subject to talk about amongst young women today. It conjures up all kinds of negative images and restraint to personal freedoms. In my clothing class, one of the projects that we had to do was formulate our own beliefs about modesty. This project was designed to help a Christian woman think through the issues of modesty and to come away with her own personal definition of what modesty means. After listening to “The soul of modesty” by C.J. Mahaney and “Modesty – does God really care what I wear?” by Nancy Leigh DeMoss, this is the definition of modesty that I am committed to pursuing and promoting for the glory of my Lord and the benefit of my brothers in Christ.
Definition of Modesty
Modesty is more than just what you wear, but a true understanding of modesty will affect what you wear. First, Modesty begins in the heart when a Christian woman realizes that her body is not her own. In 1 Corinthians 6: 19-20, Paul asks, “do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit? You have been bought with a price, so glorify God with your body.” Since we have been bought by the blood of Christ, we are no longer to be conformed to the world in which we live (Rom 12:1-3). The world says that your body is your identity and the way that you feel about your body is equivalent to the way that you feel about yourself. The world also says that you should dress so that people notice you. God says that your body is only temporary and it is fading away (Prov 31:30). If you are saved, your identity and security is in Christ. God says to dress so that people will not notice you but rather Christ who is in you. In 1 Timothy 2:10, Paul desires that women adorn themselves with that which is proper for one who professes godliness.
Secondly, Modesty seeks to serve and love others more than itself. Modesty communicates a soul that longs to please the Lord, a heart that seeks the best interest of the men around her, and a mind that is not preoccupied by the temporal things of this earth. Clothing communicates a lot about what you think of your body, what you think about others, and what you think about God. In Romans 15:1-3, Paul obligate those who are strong to protect those who are weak. Women generally do not have a problem with seeing a little skin, but it is a huge problem for guys. Therefore, we are to put aside our comfort and not live for ourselves, but rather protect our Christian brothers as best we can. Modesty goes hand-in-hand with self-control and self-denial. It takes effort to dress modestly, and to take stock of how you are presenting yourself to the world.
Modesty does not only have to do with the way you dress. You might be covered from head to toe and still be an immodest woman. The Proverbs 31 woman is a modest woman, not because of the way she was dressed. It never gives a description of her physical appearance. She is a modest woman because of the way she treats her family and others around her. She opens her mouth with wisdom and kindness is on her tongue. Her modesty is seen by the way that others react to her. Her husband trusts her, her children call her blessed, and she doesn’t need to call attention to herself, for her works bring her praise.
Modesty is a heart attitude that seeks to please and glorify God while seeking the best interest for others in the way that we dress, think, talk, and act, relate to others, choices we make, and attitudes we display.
Sunday, March 9, 2008
I forgot that I hadnt posted this one yet. I was waiting to upload the photos. This a couple weeks old, but it was such a fun day.
Yesterday was Sam's Birthday. We started the day with a delicious breakfast at my house. My family and Sam's siblings came to celebrate too. After breakfast, I took Sam to Huntington Library and Gardens. It is a huge, beautiful garden in the middle of Pasadena which used to be the residence of Mr. Huntington, a railroad tycoon. There are many themed gardens within the property and recently a Chinese garden had been added to the many others. I had not yet seen the Chinese garden and knew that even if Sam had been to Huntingtons before, he had not seen the Chinese garden either. As it turned out he had not been there at all before.
It was a glorious day with lots of sunshine, but not too much heat yet. We explored all over, and even bumped into one of my family's friends there. Along with the Chinese garden, there is also a Japanese garden, rose garden, Cactus garden, Children's garden, vegetable garden, and plenty of open green grassy areas.
After tiring ourselves out, we went back to the car and gobbled down a picnic lunch. Having seen the majority of the gardens, we decided to keep pressing on with the day. Our next destination, in Sam's little red convertible, was Mullholland Drive. This street winds its way across the top of the mountains that separate the Los Angeles Valley from the San Fernando Valley. Back when it was built, Mullholland drive went from the 101 freeway all the way out to Malibu Beach. Today, it is only drivable part of the way. This is one of my favorite drives and I wanted to share that with Sam. We drove along and stopped at the scenic overlooks. These gave us impressive views of both the San Fernando Valley and the Los Angeles Valley. We could even look across the San Fernando Valley and see the mountain were we got engaged.
As Mullholland came to an end, our next stop was the Griffith Observatory. Sam had never been, and by now the sunning was setting. We walked through the building which has all kinds of fascinating interactive displays about the sun, moon, stars and planets. We came out in time to see the sun setting over the ocean, well actually setting behind a mountain, but it was obviously over the ocean. That was the end of the plans that I had for the day, so we ended it by hanging out at Universal Citywalk for a while. There we got some much needed refreshments, and a chance to sit for a while.
This was the first time that I have had a whole day just to spend with Sam in a very long time. It was not a relaxed event, but it was relaxing just being together. We got to make some memories that I know I will cherish. And Sam was very patient to let me drag him all over the city sharing some of my favorite parts of LA with him. I did take my camera with me, but I kept forgetting to use it. But below are a couple of pictures that we took while on Mullholland.
Overlooking Studio City and Burbank in the San Fernando Valley
Overlooking Downtown LA and the 101 Freeway