Little Thoughts: Acknowledging Modesty

Thank you for not dressing to reveal yourself to the world.

My boyfriend said this to me yesterday.  We were at a local amusement park for the day, and in front of us in line, was a young-ish girl (maybe 16 or 17) wearing a shirt that revealed her entire bra.  I was actually rather taken back by how many women and girls were scantily dressed.  I saw more bras, cleavage, butt cheeks, and body parts yesterday, than I did my entire high school career.

I was wearing a college t-shirt, jean capris, and sneakers.  And even when we were in the water park, my body was covered. While we were in line, with this girl and her boyfriend (who couldn’t keep his hands off her, I might add) in front of us, my boyfriend pulled me close, and whispered that in my ear.

I grinned like a freaking fool.

See, here’s the thing; I dress modestly.  I know I have the choice to dress however I want, but I know that what makes me attractive and appealing, isn’t how much skin I reveal. I know my body is attractive to men, simply because I am a woman.  I know men are visual creatures, and I know I want to respect men and not put them in awkward or uncomfortable positions.  There have been times when I’ve worn a shirt not thinking anything of it, and my brothers or other guys I trust, have told me that the shirt was making them uncomfortable.  And guess what? I have incredible respect and appreciation for men that do that, because it makes me aware of the consequences of the clothing I choose to wear.

My boyfriend tells me all the time not only how beautiful how I am, but how smart he thinks I am.  He compliments my writing, and engages in my philosophical ideas.  He encourages my adventurous spirit and he challenges my relationship with God.  He doesn’t make me feel like I need to reveal myself to him, to be worthy of his attention.  And, the cool thing is, he acknowledges my modesty.  He acknowledges how I dress, and by doing so, he’s showing me how much he cares about me.  He knows I could dress however I wanted, but it makes my heart happy to know he appreciates my modesty.

My question to you is this: when did we stop caring about modesty? When did we stop caring about how the other sex reacts to exposed skin?  When did we stop respecting each other, and acknowledging that how we dress and what we choose to expose, has an effect on our primal instincts?  And, when did we stop imparting the importance of modesty on the younger generations?

Personally, I think modesty is hand in hand with respect.  I dress modestly, because I respect and acknowledge the undeniable fact that men are visual beings.  I dress modestly because I respect myself, and I don’t need body parts hanging out to feel good about myself, or to think I am attractive.

Also, and this could easily become another post, but to put it plainly – ladies, if you don’t want to be lusted after, put some clothes on.  Naked girls tend to end up in Playboy.  And, really, guys?  Girls are visual too, so if you don’t want to be lusted after, put some clothes on.  Naked guys tend to end up in Cosmopolitan. 

But I guess, to tie this all up, modesty goes a long way.  You don’t need to show off your body to be attractive.  Guys (and girls) do appreciate modesty.  And there’s something really cool, when people you deeply care about, acknowledge your modesty.

Ciao for now,

Julia

Little thoughts: Pray in Public

*Recently, I’ve found that I have a lot of topics for posts, but very little material to expand on them.  So I figured, at least for now, I would create a little series where I just put these “little thoughts” out into the world., rough cut and short.*

Pray in public.

Pray when you go out to dinner.  Pray when you’re eating a picnic.  Pray when you’re with friends.  Pray when you’re with your family.  Pray when you’re on a date.

Praying in public is a very vulnerable expression of faith.  I know, as Christians, we need to be bold about our faith.  But I’m more comfortable with wearing a shirt from Walk in love. and posting verses and praise songs on my social media, than I am with praying in public.

It’s vulnerable because you are allowing yourself to immediately be judged and criticized.  In an active form of faith, you are putting your guard down and opening the door for attacks.

But.  Pray in public.

Do it.

Still your hands, bow your head, close your eyes, and verbally pray to God.  Show the world who you are thanking and praising.

Let me tell you: It’s a way cool thing to pray with my boyfriend when we’re out to eat.  It’s something I’m not used to, and it’s strengthening my relationship with God.

Be bold, and pray in public.

Pray out loud.

Don’t make a show of it, and don’t demand attention.

But pray.

Pray in public, because you don’t know who may need to see, or hear, it.

Last night, some of my friends and I went to a local Friendly’s for dinner.  When our food came, we prayed together.  As we ate, we goofed off and had fun.  And a good bit of time into our meal, one of the surrounding tables got up, and one of the patrons walked over to us.  It was an older woman, and she told us that she saw us praying.  She said it made her really happy to see the younger generation still praying and being connected to God.  She concluded by saying we had blessed her heart, and made her night.

That made us all really happy, and shocked.  Something as simple as praying, and praying in public, had such an impact on a complete stranger.

I will say it again; pray in public.

Don’t let the fear of being judged keep you from praising and thanking God.  He deserves more than that.

Pray.