An open letter to all the girls.
I doubt any of this is news to you. It’s actually pretty cliche, and possibly eye roll inducing…but, my heart will grow heavy with words, and I simply write them out for relief.
This blog is about the way we dress. And, it’s also about boys. (Did you just roll your eyes? Yeah, yeah, I know, but, I promise I won’t ask you to wear a “Modest is Hottest” t-shirt or a True Love Waits ring 😉 )
This is also really a confession. I know, another confession. I’m kind of screwy, so, I struggle with a lot of stuff. But, I, amazingly, know a very merciful God who is unbelievably patient with me.
I’m no stranger to feeling invisible. I know how it feels to believe you are ugly. I relate to the battle with the mirror. I know the pain of comparing yourself to every girl you see and declaring yourself to come up short. I know how it feels to be in a room and to feel like no one even notices that you exist. I get being invisible. I also understand perfectly the feeling that no guys know you exist.
And, I also know, that that matters. No matter what you say. It matters.
As a Christian, I consciously try to be selective in my clothing choices. I have rules in my head that subconsciously run through my mind while shopping. Nothing low cut or see-through. No short shorts, mini-skirts, or short dresses. Nothing too tight. etc. Flattering and feminine, yes, but, leave a little (or a lot) of room for the imagination. Christianity isn’t legalism so, there isn’t a list of do’s and don’ts when it comes to Christian girls and their clothing choices. It’s one of those things that’s between you and God. I’m not here to tell you specifically how to dress. Know that.
My desire to dress modestly is not so that I can “earn points” before God or be all holier than thou. I desire to honor and to glorify God with my body and the way that I dress out of respect for God, myself, and others.
But, here’s the confession. Lately, I’ve been battling with not wanting to.
If you’ve read any of my blogs, you know that I struggle with the idol of self. I struggle with the desire to be noticed, to be approved, to be praised, to be admired.
In a world of Facebook, Instagram, and selfies begging for approval and praise (worship), it’s mostly just fuel to the fire.
I want to be told I’m okay. I want you to tell me that. I want you to pat me on the back. I want to be “enough”. I want you to approve of me.
And, I would be lying if I said that I didn’t want men to as well.
Out last evening, I saw an endless parade of girls dressed in revealing outfits, and consequently, I saw the men stare, approach, etc.
And, I wondered what it must be like.
Albeit, I know the truth, the temptation is still there.
“Maybe if I wore this, he would talk to me.”
“Maybe then he would notice me.”
“Maybe then I wouldn’t be invisible…”
Even if we claim to dislike attention, we all want it. Well, at least I confess that I do. And, as someone who is single, I admit that I want attention from men. I want to be the one they look at, not through.
And, I think it’s easy to point the finger and scoff at girls who dress in ways that attract male attention, but, the truth is, …I get it.
I get what they want. It feels good to be told you’re beautiful–to be the girl all the men want–to be desired.
I want to be beautiful. I wrongfully compare myself to others and feel anything but. I understand wanting to be wanted.
But, in these moments (or hours…or days…or weeks…) of temptation to, possibly, sexually objectify yourself in order to win stares, desire, and attention–to find your identity in who other people/men say you are– I urge you (and myself) to remember that, as a believer, you are a daughter of God, made in His image to display His beauty & glory.
You are fearfully and wonderfully made. And, His works are wonderful.
It is so much easier said than done, believe me, I know, but, I pray that we will passionately seek after and desire to truly live out the truth that our identity is found in Christ, not in what others say about us–not in being asked out on dates or being chased after by men. Don’t compromise for attention. One day, Lord willing, a man will approach you not because of your low cut blouse or your body, but, for the reasons that last. And, he’ll probably think you’re smokin’ hott too.
See? This blog was totally cliche. The quintessential girl post. I apologize. But, I think there’s some beauty in honesty.
“Do not let your adorning be external…but let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God’s sight is very precious.”
1 Peter 2:3-4