Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Modesty - A Personal Choice

I want to start out this post by saying that I in no way feel that this choice is Biblically mandated or is neccessary for a "closer walk with Christ". This is a personal story and a personal descision that we made for our family with lots of prayer and searching. This is my heart and my story and is not meant in any way to condem. But it is something that has blessed me beyond measure and that is what I am striving to share with you today.

My girls "working" while wearing skirts at a pioneer party we had last year.

Over two years ago I started feeling led to change my dress and that of my daughters. I was seeking a way to be a silent witness to others that we led a "different" life. One day while at the local store I noticed how I was drawn to watch families when all of the females were dressed in dresses. When they had choosen to dress this way I automatically knew that they led a different life. And I wanted that for my family. I also had the desire to find some way to remind myself of my place within my family and within society. I hold the personal belief that women are created equal to men and are just as important as them, but that they are created the weaker vessel and are made to help their husband in any way that pleases their husband. That looks different in every home and for every couple, but I wanted to find a way to show to my husband that I knew that my place in our home was different than his. And wearing a skirt is just the reminder that I wanted.

Now don't get me wrong, I still own pants and even a few capris. I garden in them, work out in them, and sometimes when I am deep cleaning or doing a ton of moving up and down the stairs I wear them. But I don't wear them in public or when we have company. I think I have only done this about 3 times since we made this choice for our family over 2 years ago now.

Maggie modeling one of her favorite summer time outfits.

For my daughters things are a little different. I still want them to grow up knowing the difference in the roles of men and women, I want them to learn to be modest at all times, but I also know that they are children. When we venture to the park, or to a friends' house, to Grandpa's farm, or to the play place at McDonalds you will often find them in pants or maybe even capris but nothing above the knee.

During the first few weeks or maybe even months of this journey I found myself bothered by my skirt at times. It seemed to be in the way all the time, but I knew that it was an adjustment like anything else. Each time I sighed over my skirt being in the way again I trained myself to remember how much the cross hurt Jesus or how much my sin hurts God. I prayed for my husband and for my respect of him and his position in our home. And I saw God do a mighty work in my heart. I came to realize that if I wanted my children to learn how to respect me I needed to model that respect toward my husband.

God slowly started showing me areas where my heart wasn't right. Often times I had outwardly showed respect to my husband or other authority but I hadn't done it in my heart. And that needed to change. One of the biggest surprises in this journey came in the way that husband treats me now. I am in no way saying he wasn't kind, gentle, and loving before, but now things are different. I am sure, though I have never asked him, it is more pleasant to come home to a nicely dressed woman rather than one in sweats and a t-shirt every day. I focus now to take time (most days) to rebrush my hair and teeth, change my shirt if needed and maybe put some lip gloss or perfume on before he comes home. I want him to look forward to coming home and not just do it because he has to. I want him to know that I value "helping" him as a priority and a priviledge in my life. And dressing differently than him has helped me to always remember to put him first. And that makes a successful marriage when both people put the other first.

Modesty in swimwear is important to us. I made these suits for my girls
this past summer and they are working so well.

I never really expected that a change in dress could bring about such a huge change in my marriage, in my self-image, in my heart, and even in my relationship with my children, but it has. I take my job within the home much more seriously now that I get up and dress in "nice" clothing that becomes a woman of position and respect. I no longer just survive but I have embraced my calling as a woman fully. And I strive each day to make my heart follow God's calling on my life and dressing differently than my husband is the outward showing of the change I am striving for in my heart.

Like I said, this is a journey that has blessed me. I don't feel hindered by it and it was and still is my choice. I want to encourage you to embrace the calling of the Lord to modesty and Godly femeninity fully. For each one of us this will look different and the calling will be individual. But let us encourage each other in this walk and calling of modesty no matter how different it is.

Written by Happily Domestic contributor - Amanda Sikes

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Lori said...

That was so well written. Thank you. We too are excited about the changes God is doing to our hearts.

Joyce - Quilted Nest said...

appreciate your sweet way of bringing across where you are at on modesty and the 'skirts' changes you have embraced. But I will have to say - 'modesty' IS biblically mandated... not the specifics (atho if you dig - you can find some of those too!) - but it's definitely commanded. Bless you this day!

Natasha Atkerson said...

Great post! I enjoyed reading it!
I had a similar experience two years ago. I felt God leading me to wear skirts more often (I still wear pants sometimes, especially when it's super cold or very windy.)
It's definitely been a journey! I plan on working at our families business (auto repair shop/gas station) after graduation and my dad has asked me to wear pants to work. So it's been an adjustment trying to get pants again! :) However, I do plan on still wearing dresses/skirts on the weekends.

I'm a 80% skirts, 20% pants fashion blogger, I would love if you checked out my modest fashion blog!
God bless,

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