5 Things Modesty Never Taught Me

Modesty. The “M” word in our Christian circles. I have written a lot about it from the heart of modesty to what men really think about modesty.  Inevitably, people always make a comment about how destructive this concept of modesty is on a girl’s psyche as if somehow covering our bodies oppresses and demeans women. I have been taught to dress modestly all my life, and there is nothing wrong with my mindset or view of myself because of it. In fact, I believe that modesty has done quite the opposite. More specifically, here are 5 things modesty never taught me.

1. Modesty never taught me to be ashamed of my body.

In fact, being taught to keep my body covered actually added value in my eyes. My body is something special and was not meant to be seen by just every average joe I walk by on the street. I have saved my secrets for the man who makes me the promise of a lifetime. He alone is the only man who will be allowed to uncover what God has made. I have nothing to be ashamed of in that. God made me special, unique, and valuable and to dress immodestly would make me ashamed to cheapen God’s creation to simple street art.

That’s what the Bible means when it talks of “shamefacedness.” Any woman with a proper sense of shame will dress in such a way as not to be the source of temptation. I would be ashamed to dress in a manner that would cause others to sin or to bring shame on myself or my God. I am not ashamed of my body, I’m not ashamed to be a woman, I’m not ashamed to be the beautiful masterpiece that God has made me to be. My body is the temple of God and it belongs to Him. I am proud to be His daughter and I am proud to dress like it. 

2. Modesty never taught me to have no sexual desires.

At the risk of being inappropriate, I will say only this. Sex is designed by God inside marriage to be a beautiful and wonderful covenant between a husband and his bride. Modesty has taught me to keep that covenant sacred. It has taught me more than anything that God owns my body, and, when the time comes, my husband will receive all that God intended for me to give along side my marriage vows. He will get it all, and I will be happy to give it to him.

3. Modesty never taught me that men control my body.

I have heard it said that women who attempt to live modesty sacrifice their freedom and control to the men around them. This couldn’t more backwards. In keeping my body covered, I have chosen to remain in control of who sees what. I have chosen to walk down the street and know that I am free of the responsibility of causing men to lust or look at me in a sexually perverted way. No, modesty will not stop all men from dirty thinking, but modesty has put me in control of what I allow them to see for free. Modesty actually puts me in control.

4. Modesty never taught me that it is ALL my responsibility.

The lust in the hearts of the men around me is not my responsibility. However, allowing my body to be used as a catalyst for that lust is. I dress modestly for Jesus Christ – so that he will be pleased with what He sees when He looks at me. I also dress modestly for the sake of my brothers in Christ. God created them to be visually stimulated for a reason, and God gave women rules to follow in regard to this area. I understand that men are responsible for every thought they think in regard to me and my body. They are not brain-dead slaves to their minds. They can control their thoughts. However, because I have love toward them, I will take them into regard as I choose my wardrobe. I will take responsibility for my part in the equation so that I am not responsible for luring men into temptation with what I wear.

5. Modesty never taught me to dress like a frump.

Lastly, I want to make it very clear that just because I have chosen a life of modesty does not mean that I have to steer perfectly clear of all hints of fashion. I enjoy being a girl. I enjoy looking pretty. I enjoy shopping! {If you follow me on Instagram you’ll find that out pretty quick!} I simply limit what I fashions I choose to take part in in order be obedient to God, serve my brothers in Christ, and to be in control of how he world views my body. Modesty never ever means that you have to look ugly or unfashionable. You are beautiful, and there is nothing more beautiful than a woman who embraces her femininity in her appearance while keeping true beauty and modesty in mind. To me, that is truly being in control of my wardrobe.

To me, modesty is a beautiful word. It has taught me to value my body, to keep sexual desires inside of my marriage, to take control of my body by keeping it covered, to understand my responsibility in this area toward Christ and my brothers, and to embrace beauty and femininity.  This is how I choose to live not because I have to, not because I’m forced to, but because I want to and because this is where I find freedom to be the beautiful person God has created me to be. Girls, embrace modesty, for your own sake, and for the sake of Jesus Christ, and you will not be ashamed of your decision.

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54 thoughts on “5 Things Modesty Never Taught Me

  1. I like the part that says modesty doesn’t mean I have no sexual desire. I use to feel it was a sin or something to be ashamed of but I’ve learnt that its what you do withe the desire that matters. I’ve learnt to keep it under subjection the bible says.

  2. Thank you! I can not express how much of a blessing this this is ! I recently graduated from a prominate Christian school and attend a very big independent baptist church and soo many girls that have graduated from my school and even in my class that struggle with these thoughts because they don’t have the right view of modesty. Anyways I just wanted to tell you I’m sooo thankful for this!!

  3. Dang, girl! Another great post I have to share with the Future Marriage University.

    Seriously, this is beautiful! Keep on sharing the truth that sets us FREE!

  4. You have such a great attitude about modesty! This post pretty much banished any lingering reservations I had about modesty’s implications for women in today’s society. Definitely pinning this for further reference. :)

  5. this great but even tho I was raised in a worldly existence some how , the Lord taught me all the above except swimming, with my future husband, thank you for taking the time for this , much needed we see it everyday , you can thank the Lord for your shape and to me its always been a gift to my husband

  6. I really appreciate what you have written. Every woman in America should read this because we do have some christian women even in our churches that do not dress modest. I think Pastors should preach more about this subject. Thank you for writing about this.

  7. You have excellent understanding of this matter. These convictions need to be taught far and wide. I pray my little daughter will live her life by these same principles. God bless you!

  8. Let us equally remember that modesty does not and should not only apply to women. Men can also dress immodestly. For far too long, the focus has been singled in on women. I agree that modestly applies to both men and women.

  9. Keep writing! These are the kinds of things that ladies and girls need to hear. There is a lot of pressure to conform, a lot of temptation to look “sexy”. Recently I heard a young woman say about something that I bought for her, “I can’t wear that. It isn’t cute.” Her definition of cute was something form fitting and revealing. I asked her a simple question. If what you think is cute is not appealing to our Lord, should you not re evaluate what you think is “cute”? She had no response for this other than to roll her eyes. Definitely keep it up! If someone gets angry at your posts, (and I have seen nothing to cause me to think this), it is likely that they are under conviction from the Holy Spirit and they are bucking Him. Keep up the good writing!

  10. Awesome post!
    I just discovered your website this morning (through seeing this post pinned on pinterest) and just wanted to say that I love this article! Great thoughts here!
    -Chels

  11. I loved this post! I think this is modesty to a “T!” It’s all based on the heart! Being modest in our dress is all about being modest in our heart! When we have a clean heart before the Lord, everything else will fall into place! :)

  12. Pingback: LAF/Beautiful Womanhood » 5 Things Modesty Never Taught Me

  13. Beautiful words today! I appreciate your heart and desire to maintain God’s provision for your “self” and not allowing that covenant to leave unabided. Now what I really want to say – You Go Girl :)

  14. This is such a good post! I also loved the one about “What Men Really Think About Modesty”. I plan on sharing this one! I actually first discovered your blog because someone on Pinterest pinned one of your posts. I think every Christian girl needs to read this!

  15. I recently, when I looked at “Dressing with Dignity” author Colleen Hammond’s Facebook page, came across a company known as “Modest Women Wear”. From what I noticed, every outfit was a winner. I would buy the clothes for my ladylove and female friends and relatives. Every female should check it out at http://www.modestwomenwear.com.

  16. Wow I love how well you explained all that! I wholeheartedly believe in modesty. Pretty much everything you said about is what my parents have been trying to teach me. God bless as you strive to live purely for Him!

    • Heather, be encouraged. Teens/children today have a real battle of peer pressure to comform, unlike anything I have ever seen. I am the parent of teens/preteens. We also have taught our children this, both the boys and the girls. What your parents are teaching you is a good thing, but you must also allow the Lord to work in your heart and make this your own conviction. How do you talk to other teens? Is it “My parents won’t allow me to do that” or is it, “According to Gods Word, it is my conviction not to do that”? If the second, wonderful. If the first, you may grow up to stray from what your parents have taught you from God’s Word. Stand fast in Gods Word. The things of this world are temporal. They will not last, and in the end, is it really worth anything to fight with your parents or the Lord about what we wear? Trivial. I am glad that you are giving this some thought, and I have been much encouraged by the number of good feed back that the post has received.

  17. Thank you so much for posting this! As a mother of a young daughter (3 years)I so appreciate the simplicity of your approach. Also as a mother of a young son (3 months) I very much appreciate you looking out for the guys in our world as well. I pray my daughter can understand this view and I pray my son will someday find a woman who understands this as well! Thank you and God bless you!!

  18. THANK YOU, LAUREN!!
    Raising 5 daughters for God’s glory is not easy in today’s culture. You have given me great help in ideas for getting across to them that modesty is not limiting nor cramping their styles. It is actually empowering. I love Thefulltimegirl blog! And am hoping my daughters will as well. :) :)

  19. This was an awesome post ! I loved reading it and totally agree with you! Just because I choose to dress modestly doesn’t mean I have no sense in fashion, I love clothes and shopping as well as anyone else, but I am a precious masterpiece of God’s and I will be careful in what I choose to wear. I am a daughter of Christ and proud of it !!

  20. So refreshing to read this important article.
    Thanks for sharing your beautiful light.
    I hope & pray every young person would be able to read this.

  21. This is such a great article! I especially like that Modesty does not mean dressing like a frump! I mentor junior high girls & when we talk about modesty they sometimes automatically think that we want them to wear long skirts & bulky turtlenecks. Lol! Great points! I’ll definitely be sharing this with my girls the next time our lessons come around to this topic.

  22. Dear Lauren,
    Thank you so much for addressing these issues in such a mature and Christlike way. It is so important that us daughters – and sons – of God give a Godly example in a confused and sinful world. Your posts which I discovered by accident (like so many people it seems – God surprises us with blessings!) has really made me see how my modest clothing choices are worth it and that I do need to speak out against girls selling themselves with their bodies. What really struck me was how when we show off our bodies instead of our hearts we can be seen only as objects. I suppose that is what our physical bodies actually are – a vessel that God has provided us with to carry our hearts, minds and souls through this life. And if that is what our ‘object’ body is for then surely we ought to treat it well and not showcase the container, but rather what it contains. In the parable of the pearl merchant he isn’t searching for the best oyster – the best pearl container – he is searching for the true inner beauty: the pearl. In fact I reckon he didn’t care at all if the outside was dented or misshapen beacause he that inner beauty is what counts. I pray that we may all ask God to help us learn and love the inner beauty God provides and use it to serve him whilst protecting our outside from those who should not have access to it because they don’t value it for what is inside.
    God bless,
    Suzie

  23. I love this article and all the comments. Came across it when a friend shared it on Facebook.
    I whole heartedly agree with each point. I’m Muslim, and modesty is the same across all faiths I guess. Love the comment one of the readers above made about modesty starting in the heart!
    Sharing this link :)

  24. I stumbled on this post via Pintrest, I’m a religious Jew who lives in Israel. I was not raised to have religion and found my path tp G-d on my own. I have struggled with modesty and how to teach it to my daughters. This post is beautiful. Thank you for putting into what modesty is about for so many of us. I pray that G-d will bless you in all your endeavors.

  25. I just read this post. And I am very amazed! Thank you for sharing your heart. I completely agree with you. More blessings!
    – Tonet

  26. Thank you for posting this! People who try to advocate things that are not right seem to have very loud, shouty, convincing voices, making it very difficult for others not to believe what they’re saying. I was rather shocked by some of the myths people have been spreading – modesty, when understood properly, does not demean women in the slightest! You’re completely right that it places a person in control of how much others see of their body and that modesty keeps your virtue safe too, which is so important, as your virtue is the one thing that, once you’ve given it away, you can’t get back.

  27. Your right about their beliefs being backwards. I mean, people only see what I want them to, isn’t that freedom?
    I’ve heard girls complain about having to be modest when no one tells boys to be modest, but really, do you see guys walking around with booty shorts? They think that by throwing themselves away to the public they are set free, but really they just make themselves an object of pleasure and then they say that that’s not what women are for (and its not), but if that’s not what you’re for than why represent yourself that way?

  28. I just stumbled upon this post from Pinterest. I appreciate the humble yet authoritive attitude you show toward the beauty of living modest! Thank you for taking a stand for whatever is true, noble, right, pure, lovely, admirable,excellent, and praiseworthy as Philippians 4:8 says. It also answered some questions I didn’t know the answer to about modesty that I was afraid to ask others about. God bless you richly!

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