Meet Modesty, a Long Lost Friend
Let me introduce you to a long lost friend. Once you get to know her, I hope you will come to love her as much as I do—and that’s a big bunch of love! You see, this special character looks out for the interests of others. She promotes feelings of unity and team building. Blessings trail behind her like the train of a cathedral-length wedding gown. She is something special!
My friend’s name is Modesty. You may have heard of her. Some who don’t know her speak unkindly of her because they don’t really understand her nature or intentions. Others who consider her precious and worth defending have experienced their well-intentioned attempts to share her goodwill twisted out of context or skewed. Many have even had their personal choices to live in fellowship with Modesty ridiculed. But Modesty always extends grace.
Modesty doesn’t take the misconceptions of others to heart. You see, she has a humble estimation of her own importance. She lives free from vanity and would never boast or be pretentious. She always displays decency in her behavior, her speech, and her appearance. Her simple goodness doesn’t call attention to herself, but at the same time, her virtue affects those around her.
Modesty knows the Lord in a very special way. She and Jesus were good friends when He walked on the earth, and they are still close today. She understands that God wants His children to live balanced lives—to flourish in a stable ratio of “being” and “doing”—in a harmonious, simultaneous state of receiving grace and responding to grace with reverent appreciation. Modesty recognizes that for Christians, that includes both who a person is in their private life and the way they present themselves in public.
I wasn’t always friends with Modesty. I was a cocktail waitress, and we ran in completely different circles. After I began to walk with the Lord, the Bible introduced me to this now dear friend. It’s worth taking a look to see what the Good Book says of her, but remember it's important to avoid focusing on just one aspect of God’s Word and disregard others. We must take into account biblical teaching as a whole, without fixating on the exterior of a person and disregarding the person within.
Modesty is like the tip of a great iceberg—the part that shows up on the outside when there’s so much more that lies beneath what’s visible.
Modesty doesn’t want to have a phony, shallow relationship that is just based on appearances. A sincere relationship with Modesty begins below the surface, in a person’s heart. It includes purity in both thought and manner. What is resident in the hidden person of the heart will show up in the way that person dresses and conducts themself with humility and respect . . . or not.
One look back through the pages of Scripture, and we can see that God’s concept of “what not to wear” can differ from what men and women choose for themselves. In the Garden of Eden, after Adam and Eve sinned, they made “aprons” of leaves to cover their nakedness. Of course, aprons come in all shapes and sizes, but for the most part, they don’t cover a person’s body: trunk and thigh, front and back. When Adam and Eve stepped out in their new clothes, God made His opinion clear. Their aprons were insufficient. He replaced them with tunics (or robes) that covered much more than their foliage fashions.
Modesty is an issue that concerns and benefits all Christian men and women. Matthew Henry, a famous 17th Century Bible scholar and author wrote, “Those that have broken the fences of modesty will never be held by the bonds of piety.” Let me break it down like this:
Dressing immodestly or sensually takes a step away from purity; while modesty supports and encourages morality.
It’s my hope that if you haven’t yet met my friend, you will come to know and appreciate her for yourself. I love Modesty. She takes into account the feelings of others. She seeks to honor God, help guys maintain pure thought lives, and model moderation among Christian sisters—blessings for everyone! There’s so much more I could write a book. Oh, yeah, I did!
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