Chances are you’ve heard the phrase, “Modest is Hottest” at least once. When quoting this we attempt to communicate that all this tiresome covering up won’t make us ugly, stuck-up, frumps after all. Hooray! We can be dazzlingly attractive AND still follow all the rules of How to be a Good Christian Woman. Maybe we will even get a good husband out of the deal. That’s the point of being modest, right? To attract a good man?
Hopefully I am not the first person to tell you that Modesty is in fact not Hottest(y). If our decisions to dress modestly are based on the goals of attracting attention then something has gone wrong. Luckily there is something better in store: Proclaiming the Glory of God.
I find it a little bit difficult to describe precisely how the decision to put on jeans instead of yoga pants, or a one piece instead of a bikini translates into God’s glory. I CAN tell you that on my mirror, there is an index card that asks me “Whom are you proclaiming today?” It invites me to consider how I act, and what I wear, and whether I am doing it for my own glory, or the Lord’s. When I dress for the glory of God, I don’t seek to draw attraction to myself. I choose to be aware of the limitations and temptations of the men I meet. (If you don’t get this, ask your dad.) I can choose to not distract them, and allow them to more freely pursue the holiness that we should all strive for. If I dress immodestly, I glorify myself and my body (or even simply my comfort) at the expense of those around me.
Of course this decision can meet with criticism:
“It’s MY body! I should be able to wear what I want.”
“It’s just way too HOT to cover up that much!”
“MEN need to be taught to control THEMSELVES, this isn’t my responsibility.”
Each of these quotes has a strain of truth. Our bodies and lives are gifts from the Lord, and we have free choice to do with them as we will. Men of course are responsible for their own holiness. But it should bring joy to us help one another on this path. If I can help someone by being a little more cautious about what I wear, do or say, I should do it.
Kelly Christopherson is a leading member of UCO Lansing and is a senior at Michigan State University, double majoring in Economics and Philosophy. In her spare time she plays and watches basketball as much as possible. She is enamored of the many methods of communicating beauty and truth.