My daughter started a deep discussion with me on modesty the other day. Her friend had inquired why she didn't wear more revealing clothing and my daughter to know if her answers were good enough. As she gets older I find these kinds of conversations happening more and more. Why she shouldn't wear this or that and what exactly does modesty mean?
I admit I'm usually kind of snippy and probably had a short retort on the tip of my tongue for the other young girl but thankfully God stopped me and helped me speak to my daughter's tender heart.
She wants to do the right thing but not knowing what that actually means, and what the Bible says about modesty.
This is the prime time to help my daughter continue to make wise choices in how she dresses.
At 10 she's not really of the age where one is looking to entice someone else with their figure etc. so she had a few more questions about why it's a good idea to cover up.
When shopping for my daughter's clothing it usually falls in my lap. She's not real picky and as long as it's feminine she's happy. I get her final say when shopping online but as she always tells me, “I love what you pick Mommy. And can you pass that J Jill catalog while you're at it so I can pick what I'm going to wear in a few years?”
But this is now and what happens when she starts picking her own clothes? When she's decided that mommy's style is not her own?
We've had a few times when coming out of the dressing room something doesn't fit right and she's quick to say it's not going to work but for the most part right now she puts her defining style in my hands.
I grew up dressing fairly modest and it wasn't until college that my clothing sometimes was not the best. I won't go into details but being a semi-athlete/dancer and having a very active social life had a bit to do with it.
I remember one incident when a friend, who worked at a clothing store, did her best to stuff me into a pair of jeans that were one size smaller than I normally purchased. I got in them but could I walk? And what good came of me walking like…like I had issues?
I then made a 360 later on in college when I became a Christian without even realizing the gradual change that was happening. But when I look back…goodness! Mom you let me out of the house in that???!!
In defense of my mother who is a strong Christian woman this was during my college years when I was rarely home. She worked long and hard to make a home for us (I stayed at home during school) but I was really rarely home. I went to school in during the day hours, worked after school, then went back to campus to study until the library closed. When I got home mom was asleep. Okay so that's her defense.
As my daughter hovers on the brink of young ladyhood I want her to know that how she dresses says a lot about her.
Doesn't it feel so much better when someone takes a double take at your beauty and chicness not at your long expanse of legs and whatever else you have hanging out.
- Start with the scripture: As a Christian family it always helps to start off such life changing conversations with the Bible. What does God have to say on the ways of dress? ”
1 Timothy 2:9 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;
- Do as I say AND do: How much easier is it to teach my daughter about modesty when I am being an example and dressing in a modest way myself. I am honest with her and talk about when I wasn't dressing in a modest way.
- Teach Simplicity and Elegance: Dressing modest doesn't have to be dowdy and frumpy. We aren't enamored with Audrey Hepburn and Grace Kelly style for their revealing wardrobes. Check out this Audrey Hepburn style Capsule.
- What message are you sending? This is a bit like Do as I say AND do. It's important that if you are teaching modesty you are practicing it too. My daughter is very aware of what I'm wearing and how I conduct myself. I want it to be a positive message because she is learning from me every day.
- Be an individual. Help your daughter to realize she can be a stylish individual without showing all she's got. I personally know it's a struggle to find decent clothing for our young girls that isn't too tight, too short, or says something inappropriate on it. But it's worth the effort. Especially when another mom asks where I got that.
Good Places to Shop for Decent Clothing for Young Girls
Land's End: I stay away from pencil leg jeans but for the most part I can find several items here for good prices on clearance and with percentages off.
Etsy: Etsy has something for everyone. You probably don't really need to type the word “modest” into the search bar unless you're looking for something specific. Just search under girl's dresses or girl's clothing (which may bring up a lot of baby stuff) and a lot of talented designers will come up.
Being modest is about more than what you put on your body. You can cover up from head to toe but if the heart isn't right it's all for naught. I recommend a good study on this topic for young girls. Such as…
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