Modesty is a hot topic. And as a mom to 3 girls, I am constantly aware how fast the world (even among the Christian circles) has changed on the general view of it.
It seems that the standard for modesty has changed in the last decade or so. Or maybe it's because things are more public now with FB. Or maybe because I've been stuck in the 90's fashion having lived here in a very small town overseas for a while now :). I have noticed that many of my like-minded, conservative friends wear clothes that I would probably consider immodest like strapless dresses, halter tops, very short skirts (at least half their thighs are showing), plunging necklines (low enough to show cleavage), tight pants, 2-piece bikini suits.
I am not surprised that women in general wear these, but I'm talking about Christian women who I think a decade ago would have also considered their outfits immodest. What changed? And here I notice young girls wearing boots/shoes that were the types that Pretty Woman would have worn. The "woman of the night" look seems like normal attire now. When we go to the US, I feel so out of place because women wear the clothes mentioned above to church (our standard should be the same wherever we go, but we do tend to dress conservatively there) and they're not a minority either!
I don't want to sound legalistic, nor reduce the rules of modesty to "do's" and "don't's". As one writer says, "Modesty is an issue of the heart, not the hemline." I want to teach my girls how to properly view modesty, even when mommy is not there to remind them. I just wonder does modesty go along with the times? After all, we don't hide our ankles and cover our heads like our Victorian-era sisters did. If modesty is relative, is that okay? And how far do we go? What do we, as mothers, teach our girls with what we wear?
Some helpful links on this topic:
- The GirlTalk blog has several note-worthy posts on modesty. Make sure you check them out.
- Dr Mohler has a few posts on the same topic as well that you can find here, PDF here, and here.
- Tim Challies has written a book to address the issue of modesty, in light of the Gospel. The book is called Modest.
- Mary Kassian provides 3 guidelines on modesty.
- Lydia Brownback addresses other forms of modesty that we need to be aware of as well.