I know that a lot of this post is offensive (starting with the image to the left) but at the moment I'm too tired to edit. This is what we got... and worst comes to worst, there are pictures down at the bottom that are cool :)
Culture says that beauty looks like A, B, and C. and puts shame on so many women. In covering my body, I am saying "Look, I can be beautiful without strutting my stuff" and its a great way to focus on what God says about me.
In other words, because I dont feel the need to focus on if my legs are flawless or my hair is living up to the latest trends I dont have to combat negative messages. Instead, I am reminded that my being is wonderfully made by an all powerful God.
In fact, it is definitely more than just wanting to embrace my womanhood. One blogger wrote "God has done a big change inside of me, so I am going to show that through a big change outside of me." and its a great way to start making steps of faith.
I would rather characterize myself with Jesus and positive body image, and for me, being covered helps me not hate myself so bad--- Its a heart and a mind thing. I promise.
One of the ways that I have seen this is my response to a new dress code in my area-- and I used to hate it so much. Now, not quite so much (although if we can wear any sort of patterned skirt, why cant people wear plaid shorts?) and its interesting to watch how my argument changed. Its actually pretty nice to see kids wearing clothes that dont look painted on or so short we see lack of underwear. :)
2) I am awesome-- This one is going to get me unsubscribers :)
See, I like to think that culture in the past dictated that girls were treasured, protected, sheltered, and secured. However true that was, I like to treat my body this same way. (Isnt that radical?)
WIth Gods truth about, me I find my body is awesome and therefore I will hide it away.
In other words, the sun does not lose its shine even if the clouds cover its glow temporarily. God made clothes back in Genesis "to conceal nakedness and when we do not cover our bodies it is a perversion of the system that God instituted". He knows what he is doing!
One blogger was saying all this trash that she felt like dirt if she wasnt dressed in a bunch of nothing-- she was saying to imagine ourselves in her off-brand shoes "...casting longing, furtive glances at the other girls your age in the next dressing room having the time of their lives trying on cute, stylish clothing. Wishing you could be them, just for a little while, just to know what it's like to feel normal "
For me, it hurts to know that adult woman see fault in modest clothes, longing to dawn (more or less) sinfulness. It hurts to know that each of the 63 comments posted agree with her because modesty doesn't have to be unattractiveness; modesty is not about feeling worthless, either. Its valuing your body, the temple of the Lord, and the men around you, too.
*Important* My long hair does drive me crazy some days but I love it to pieces anyway. I am never covering my body in shame or because I want to dehumanize myself at all. In fact, if you want to see what long hair looks like when it is carefully maintained, check out this Pinterest board that I am slowly but surely adding to. I would show you my hair but that might defeat the purpose. link: https://www.pinterest.com/majesticgoldenr/everything-else/
Bored? I get that this is a hugely annoying topic. If you want, check out the fun stuff below an then come back.
3) Its weird (in a good way!)
I think that one of the flaws the Christian church has is that it blends. People hardly act or dress differently than anyone else so a Christian just blends into the crowd. What sort of kingdom building is that?
When you are dressed differently, to please God not people, it creates a different standard. Looking like someone who is passionate about my faith, I find, is a great conversation starter. Its cool not to fit in with pop culture/trends.
It also is handy to make sure that I am up to par on good behavior. Not that salvation is earned with good works, but merely that as a bug under a microscope even the little things make a good impression of Christianity. Because people will notice.
They will sure as anything notice if I spend all my money on fancy purses or shoes-- or on the church and children. One person said "Let's be modest in all areas of life. One exception: let's be liberal in how much we love God and our neighbors." and I think that is key. It makes it (again) a heart thing about where our focus is.
3.5) J - O - Y.
Once I heard Joy spelled out Jesus Others Yourself and do i ever forget that! I talk about myself all the time, am quite selfish when it comes to wanting things and wanting things to go my way, and generally am going to look out for myself first even if that means adding unnecessary worry and stress and heart ache.
But thats not the way its supposed to be-- its not all about us. Its better if our clothes draws attention to God, not us.
Sometimes dressing immodestly can be a way to draw attention to us. To the brands we are wearing. To the fancy highlights we are sporting. To the bright red lipstick we are rocking. You're preaching "Here look at my body! Did you hear me? LOOK AT ME!!!!!" without ever opening your mouth.
Are we here to be our brand or to build the Kingdom?
People flip out when we set standards of what is okay and what is not but I hope you can set a standard for yourself of what is "too much". And I hope you can do it in a way that you feel confident and amazing.
3.75) the one about this Covering thing.
I wear a covering. The only other person I am related to that does is my sister. The pattern we wear is something that I made myself and am selling on Etsy. We are the only two who cover our hair/heads at my church. Everyone else thinks we are nuts :)
So why do I? Wouldnt it be easier to look normal? What sort of 14 year old gets the idea to look like theyre Amish (not really) anyway? Answer: It helps me remember: God is there! He loves you! Share the love!
.... But its the same thing that people ask questions. I find that sometimes wearing my covering is less for me, and more for others. They see me wearing something clearly against our high school dress code and want to know whats up. It keeps me on my feet and I love it.
I grew up with a bunch of Mennonites and of course the moms always wore these covering things. When I was 10 and definitely not a Christian yet, I had a conversation that looked like this:
Me: So why do you wear those things anyway??
Friend, age 12: Its in the Bible, duh. :/
Me: No its not. If it was my pastor would have told me. *sigh*
Friend: Oh yeah? Go use your fancy internet to look it up and then come back and talk :) :) :)
And what I found was that the Bible says to cover when we are praying or prophesying (which is just fancy words for when we are talking to God or for God) and when we are worshiping him. At least thats what Paul told the First Century church to do, most people say its not relevant here 2000 years later, you know?
See, Ive been covering for about a year now but a few weeks ago, I finally got "worship" in a way that changed my perspective. Worship is "response to God's amazing character and the love which he has poured out for us". Reading this one "When do I cover?" article sort of ties this together to when we might choose to cover. We can all wear a covering when we are worshiping, even maybe to overflow from just we are in a church building.
We can worship by singing as we wash the dishes, or taking a peaceful, reflective walk on a sunny day somewhere, or dressing ourselves modestly to honor our bodies which God has so wonderfully created. In this, worship time can be almost all the time.
And that my friends, is why I cover since you asked.
4) I dont want to be naked.
I am going to try to say this carefully, but I'm not sure how its going to come out.
I think that no matter what the feminists say, if you put your boobs on display, someone will look at them..... I'm sorry but I dont think that we can assume the best in people-- there will be perverts and rapists. You might not be dressing for the boys but that doesnt mean that they wont look anyway. Life.
Are there unfair double standards (image example with partial nudity) about what appropriate dress looks like? Is this wrong that everything is sexialized? Is it messed up that girls wear pants and short hair but half of America starts freaking out (well, my half) if guys grow out there hair and wear dresses? That men can dress very provocatively as well any you never hear modesty rules for them?
Sure. We all know that what a person is or is not wearing is not consent and all that great stuff---- but while we might want to be able to dress in our frilly underwear down Main Street but that doesnt mean that we should.
To me, covering up makes us less of a target; less of an object and more of a human being. Its a guys responsibility to see me as a human regardless but I feel when modest I am judged on what is "up here" in my brains than on how entertaining I am to guys.
Modesty cant completely prevent getting raped, insulted, and disrespected in this society but I think it does help set a standard of respect... or professionalism... or decency.... or something.
And I perfer to be safe than sorry. I'm not the sort of person that really gets a kick of seeing people dressed in certain ways and I myself prefer not to be on display.
Now ready for some fun pictures??? Yay!
Also keep in mind, in this I use a lot of Muslim images. I am not Muslim, but they are pretty awesome images and I dont really have any other options since the Amish arent all over Pinterest with modesty boards :) When you see "hijab" note that I substitute "covering".
(My English teacher this year was giving me hate about saying that I am uneasy about full body/over the eye coverings. I said that they are somewhat extremist but its less about wanting to restrict religion and more about wanting to end radical ideas of restricting education, of selling young girls off to be married, and those who think its a swell idea to blow up my nation. She was telling me I was women-bashing and uber hypocritical, but I was confused about her argument too-- I want the best for these women, to give them proper choices. And that is my opinion on that, if you were wondering.