*The following post was written by Ksenia, one of our monthly contributors here at TFG.
Oh no, not another modesty article. Why do people feel the need to push their prudish perspective down my throat? Like really, I'm not sleeping around, nothing is hanging out; I try to keep it classy. But alas, it's never enough.
We're always told to dress appropriately, but perhaps our modesty goggles should focus more on actions and emotional purity. You can always change into a more modest outfit, but it's much harder to change our emotional habits, and impossible to do it as quickly as simply putting on a different dress.
I can remember being told by my father on multiple occasions to go back to my room and change my outfit, sometimes being instructed to bring back a particular article of clothing which would go straight into the donation bin. I would get so angry, so offended, hot tears would stream down my cheeks and my day would be ruined.
Looking back, I think that the most concerning of those exchanges was not the clothing itself, but my attitude to honest correction. How often are we offended and angered by a person's well-meaning comments? Sometimes we need to swallow our pride, but I think we often need to check that we are truly being charitable when pointing out someone's immodesty to them.
Modesty is an intensely personal matter. It is the proper veiling of our most private and vulnerable selves, whether physically, emotionally, or spiritually. We don't want people telling us what what we should regard as private. It's demeaning that someone else thinks that they know better than you what is most precious and hidden in your very being.
I think that we all get so offended when corrected in the modesty area because it's like being told you're committing a sexual sin. It's personal and intertwined with who we are. Although we should evangelise and lead our brother's and sister's to holiness, we should consider that commenting on someone's modesty is like commenting on their sexual habits. We should point it out to those with whom we have a close enough relationship to comment on such sensitive matters.
I'm not here to say that a hem length or dress style is the cut-off for modesty. On the contrary, I see clothing as a very minimal part of the issue. I think that we should focus and teach girls and women to be modest in speech, in emotional bonding, and in my opinion, social media exposure.
Oversharing is a true modesty concern. Our selfie culture is extremely immodest. Note: taking a selfie and posting it on Facebook/Instagram is not immodest - posting 25 selfies in a day/weekend is when things are getting a little ridiculous. Also, when that is your source of self worth, we're getting worried.
It's not that there's anything wrong with your body, with pictures of your pretty face, or sharing your feelings. They are all beautiful, God made treasures. In reality they are so fiercely special that that they should not be shared with the world to access whenever. Not everyone carries an Hermes bag or a Cartier watch, because few are willing to invest that much into a single luxury item. You are so much more beautiful and valuable than a $100,000.00 piece of jewelry.
Make sure that the people you share your intimate self with (physically, emotionally, spiritually, socially) are making a Valentino commitment and investment to you. Don't ever sell yourself short, you're worth more than any Versace or Dolce & Gabana handbag. God doesn't make Wal Mart people.