Modesty is one of the topic we really do not like addressing or someone addressing with us, yet, modesty is not so much what you wear, but who you represent as a Christian woman. Think about it, just as if you work for a company where they have a dress code to portray an image of that company.
We also need to realise that as Christian women, we are princesses of the living King and therefore need to represent Him accordingly wherever we go because our corporate mission is to be fishers of men. The image that you can keep in your mind is how Kate Middleton aka the Duchess of Cambridge, have changed her image, from before she was a Duchess, to after she went into covenant with Prince William through marriage, and now that she is potentially the next queen in line to the throne, she dresses differently because she represents the Royal family.
In Ephesians 4:17 – 32, Paul explain this concept clearly. In verses 17 to 19, he describes the old person, before Christ, and then so powerfully in verse 20 and 21, he reminds us of the turning point, that is, the marital covenant with Jesus:
20 That, however, is not the way of life you learned 21 when you heard about Christ and were taught in him in accordance with the truth that is in Jesus.
And then in verses 22 – 32 Paul then continues to impart to us, the wisdom and maturity that we have grown into, when we have decided that we are in the service of the King of Kings and clearly expands on, what the ‘Dress code’ and conduct for the Christian women, in our case should be.
The key verses in this whole passage for me is verse 22 to 24:
22 You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off the old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; 23 to be made new in the attitude of your minds (change your mind about whom you are in service for – you are now royalty); 24 and to put on the new self (like a robe); created to be like God in the true righteousness and holiness (the corporate image that we want to portray).
So, as a woman married to Jesus Christ now, your fashion taste must reflect your marital status with Jesus Christ. You can be fashionable, but you need to question your intention – are you dressed for success? – to be approachable, modest and humble; to build a bridge for someone who needs to change their mind, or are you just not feeling right – pulling down on that dress that is too short or top that is too revealing and is attracting the wrong kind of mindset.
And for those of us whom the Lord has helped in the area of what we wear and our attitude to fashion, I also want to encourage us to be kind to those ladies or daughters, who has not reached this mindset of portraying the corporate image of God. They need to be taught in kindness and shown by example to think about their choices. Anyone can change – that is why God has given us all, a mind to change – our own free will.
We should also teach our sons to be aware of this, so that they know what a modest, young lady looks like (in dress code and conduct) and to bare that in mind when searching for a life partner. Encourage discussion with your children, not to judge, but to think about the image that is portrayed through others and themselves. Let them take pride in their appearance, making them look in the mirror, and say something good about the intentions behind their appearance before they leave the house e.g before leaving for school: “I am wearing clean, school uniform and my hair is combed or nicely tided away, as not to distract me from my job, that is learning, today.”
In like manner also, that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array; But (which becometh women professing godliness) with good works. 1Tim2:9-10