Modesty Extends Beyond Clothing



A while ago I wrote about my choice to be modesty - and since then the concept of modesty has been on my mind. For years and years the Mormon culture has been linked to modesty – long shorts, one piece swimsuits, sleeves, and so on. Sometimes we are asked to explain why modesty is important and sometimes we must defend our clothing choices in a constantly changing world. But the principle of modesty still stands because it is timeless and it applies to all stages of life. It is a principle given by God that applies to men and women, sons and daughters – for all times. But being modest extends beyond the clothing you wear. It is also in your attitude and in your reverence to the Lord.

Modesty shows humility. The willingness of a modest man or woman shows that they are willing to set aside the worldly fashion trends, styles, and pride to become fully dedicated to something that the Lord has said is important. In Doctrine and Covenants 42:40 the idea of humility and modesty is continued, “Thou shalt not be proud in thy heart; let all thy garments be plain.” Does the phrase “plain garments” mean we cannot have stylish and trendy clothing? No. It means that that we dress properly for the occasion and we do not become consumed with brand names or the hottest fashion.

Modesty shows dedication and preparation. Modesty in dress and appearance and in thought and behavior will help prepare us to make and keep sacred temple covenants. Our modesty shows our dedication to the gospel by making the right choices to help us prepare for the temple. Modesty in dress and appearance and in thought and behavior will help prepare us to make and keep sacred temple covenants.

Modesty shows strength and courage. It can be difficult to remain modest as shorts are getting shorter, tops are getting tighter, and sleeves are being removed left and right. By being modest we are showing are strength to the Lord and to those that are curious about the Church. Remaining modest through the constant fashion trend changes shows our ability to stand up for what we believe is important. Strong and courageous children of God all working towards the same goal.

Modesty shows reverence to the Lord. The way we dress whether at church meetings or with our friends will show God how we value the body he gave us. Our bodies are often referred to as temples – which are the most sacred of buildings. How do we treat our temple? How do we protect our temple? Show respect for the Lord and for yourself by dressing appropriately for Church meetings and activities, whether they are on Sunday or during the week.

Modesty also offers the constant companionship of the Holy Ghost, a foundation to teach our own children on the importance of appearance, and the ability to “stand as witnesses of God at all times”.

There are many blessings that come from being modest in your dress and in your attitude, and one of those blessings is an increase in confidence. When I dress modestly, I don’t think about pulling and tugging clothing to make sure I am covered properly. I am more confident in what I wear. When I dress modestly, I can focus on the people I meet, what they are saying, and the conversations we are having. I am more confident in my communication. When I dress modestly, I know I am sharing an outward appearance of drive and determination and that my clothes do not define me, but my words and my accomplishments become the focal point. I am more confident in the woman I am.

So while people will often ask why we choose to dress modestly – the principle of modesty will extend beyond clothing and appearance. Modesty becomes part of your attitude, your reverence to the lord, and your confidence. And those things are more important than any piece of clothing.
© Deidre Emme. Design by Fearne and Breezy & Co.