I spent the day yesterday with the olders… the olders, meaning the four oldest at home (and that, thankfully, included Timothy). We sort of followed an oft taken course… Penney’s in town, the bank and Starbucks. Our little town really only has one viable clothing store and we’re thus forced to drive a tad bit to surrounding towns to do any significant shopping. I guess we still do get into enough shopping trouble locally, so, I suppose it’s a good thing the great stores require a bit of time. Time and planning.
My boys know there’s been some discussion of clothing (in the blogosphere and after our time at the Deer Lake Conference last weekend). So Samuel knew he’d hit a hot button by pulling out a black T-shirt with a inscribed message: You know you want me.
Instantly… the modesty “issue” flared and flashed before me and remains on my mind. It seems as if, to one degree or another, it’s always on my mind. I sometimes wonder if it’s because it’s been an oft discussed topic in our home and elsewhere throughout the years. Truly, I wonder if it’s because we have daughters or if, really, it’s because we have sons. Then I wonder if it’s not also bcz I and our daughters, by conviction, wear dresses (and not pants). Whatever the case, the matter of modesty and feminine dress (and I don’t use the term interchangeably) is, or ought to be, a matter of concern to believers.
I think seeing that shirt, having just been through the little girls’ department and seeing nothing but downsized-Hollywood clothing. I was grieved as I looked at the marketing being foisted on little girls and forced on mothers attempting to dress little girls. I was grieved bcz I have a little daughter whom I would never ever set as a sex object before men and yet were I to purchase and dress her in much of what I saw yesterday I would be doing just such a thing. Little girls… women dressed in the attire of harlots. There is clothing that is an abomination. Sadly, it’s everywhere.
I don’t expect “modesty” to be a matter of concern to those outside “the faith” bcz, let’s face it, truly they serve the gods of this world and do not have a walk with the Living LORD… so, how can modesty (or anything else, really) matter much? And while I’m all for “mainstream” retailers creating and marketing “modest clothes,” I don’t really expect they’ll do so on a large scale *unless* they see a huge market and I certainly don’t anticipate retailers’ versions of modest clothes to be genuinely modest. And until the “church” gets into the Word of God and out of the entertainment business, those who honestly seek modest clothing will represent such an insignificant fraction of the retail dollars, it won’t make fiscal sense to cater to the small sect. O, sure, there are retailers who market modest clothing — and we occasionally find them — but, generally speaking, it’s the handful of catalog stores that carry lines of modest clothing.
After our local jaunt, we headed to the thrift stores and Marshall’s. Timothy was anxious for me to find some new dresses or whatever I needed… he was treating. I looked… and looked and after pulling out a couple of dresses that were identical to ones I already have, I realized I didn’t really need anything. Later we headed over to Marshall’s (a store where one can find marvelous deals on men’s and baby’s clothing and housewares). After looking through racks and racks of immodest clothing, I told Timothy that, really, I just needed a bath mat. And a can opener.
In the back of my mind was the visual of that inscription: You know you want me… It seemed throughout the day I was seeing shoppers wearing (and buying more) clothing that stated that message: You know you want me (and I’m available). I felt sad as I watched and have, since then, thought of the girls in the different stores… already dressed in come-hither clothing, they were buying more of the same — perhaps intentionally stating the message and perhaps hoping for a response. Trouble is, once the girls become aware of some guy’s passion toward them they’re often angry and resentful of the attention they receive. That’s the remarkable part of women’s attire. It is so powerful… and sends such strong messages. Many women desperately crave the show-stopping attention and then abhor it and the feeling of being an object of lust when they receive it. They appear to be confused by the reactions they receive and seem oblivious of mixed signals they’re giving. But they’re not oblivious. Ignorant, but not oblivious.
I pray others will join in taking a stand for modest clothing. Next on my list will be modest *and* feminine clothing.