I met Savannah at an event called “Fashion Cover”, where I was invited to speak to teenage girls about our identity as daughters of the King. The event’s theme revolved around modesty and how to dress as the Jesus’ girls we are. What an awesome idea! They had a fashion show before I spoke and the “models” (girls from that church) had to write an essay about what Modesty meant to them. Savannah won the contest and I invited her to be a guest on this blog. I believe this is a very important message today: If we are to make an impact in this world for Jesus, we must act, talk and dress like His daughters. Listen to Savannah as she shares her heart.
By Savannah Carnahan
Modesty to me means respecting myself, others, and most of all, God. The way you dress shapes how people perceive you. If you dress like a vulgar woman, people are going to treat you as one. I once had a good friend who tended to dress immodestly, and despite the fact that she was highly intelligent, she had a hard time getting people to treat her as anything other than boy-crazy and vapid.
The way you dress also shapes and is shaped by the way you see yourself. The easiest example is that when you are in a bad mood, the only thing you want to wear is sweatpants and a sweatshirt. Obviously, there is nothing wrong with that, but it is a good example of how what you wear is shaped by your attitude.
Subconsciously, we also see what other people wear and judge them by it. If I say “high heels and micro-mini”, a judgment about the character of the girl in question automatically pops into your head. Even though we try not to judge by appearances in theory, in reality, most of us do.
Modesty means respecting others, especially guys.
I read a book once about praying for your future husband, and one of the things the book recommended praying for was that you would behave toward the guys around you the way you would want the girls around your future husband to behave.
That really hit home with me. It made me realize that I wasn’t just preventing the guys around me from stumbling because of me – I was also respecting their future spouses.
However, it is not only guys that you are respecting when you dress modestly. You are also respecting older people’s feelings. Back in my grandfather’s day, women wore full dresses as swim suits and did not even wear pants. I am sure today’s extremely short skirts or shorts shock him to no end. By dressing modestly, I am showing him that I have respect for him.
But I am also respecting myself by dressing modestly.
Although women are still long ways from being respected only for their intelligence and not their looks, dressing modestly means that the first thing my boss would see is my face and not my other assets. Obviously, some ogling will still happen, simply because guys are guys, but when I dress modestly, I know it’s their choice, not mine. Modesty means being known as “that really fast girl Savannah” at my track meets, instead of “that girl that runs around in her sports bra after her race… what was her name again?” Dressing modestly helps people see me as a person instead of an object.
Finally, dressing modestly honors God.
By respecting my body, I am clothed in His righteousness. When I do not, I am, in essence, desecrating His temple.
Dressing immodestly also takes away from my Christian witness. When people see micro shorts and a low cut top instead of a high and mighty God, I make myself a graven image and put myself above God.
Immodesty takes away from the pure beauty only He can give. That beauty was intended for one man: My future husband.
Savannah is a tenth grader and participates in cross country, track and field, FCA (Fellowship of Christian Athletes), Beta Club, and FBLA (Future Business Leaders of America). She is also involved in her youth group at her church and Girls on Track, which teaches middle school girls life lessons using running and games. She believes she will major in either biochemistry or creative writing.