When you think of a modest maiden, what comes to mind? How would you describe her? For the rest of this article, we’re going to talk about a fictional modest maiden, Anna. Anna is feminine, beautiful and radiant. She’s sweet, kind, gentle, discreet, and a young lady seeking God with her whole heart. I would guess that most of you have a good visual image of her- yet I haven’t even described the most basic of her physical characteristics!
I didn’t mention to you what clothing Anna was wearing. But can you picture this young woman in a mini skirt and halter top? I can’t! Her heart and character will flow through into every area of her life- including how she dresses.
We, like Anna, must start with our hearts, and let that flow through every aspect of our lives. This is not an excuse to dress immodestly! However, there are some young ladies out there who do everything “right” as far as dress codes go. Sadly, though, their hearts aren’t in tune with the Father’s. Some may lack radiance- you can’t coax even the slightest smile from their lips, or a friendly greeting. Others lack discreetness, and tend towards loudness, boisterousness, and a flirtatious attitude. Where do you stand? Evaluate your heart, dear sister, and see what changes need to be made in your attitude, in order to be truly modest. Let us journey through some of Anna’s characteristics together.
We first note that our model is feminine. What is true femininity? It’s a working of the heart that comes through in your dress, as well as the things you say and do. One dictionary notes that femininity is “having qualities traditionally ascribed to women, as sensitivity or gentleness.” We should strive for our very being to be feminine. Anna chooses modest, feminine clothing. Many ladies have taken modesty to the “frumpy, unkempt” extreme. Our outward appearance isn’t everything, but it is an important testimony. Choose colors and styles that are modest, feminine, and work well for you. Anna enjoys allowing men to be masculine, by not doing everything herself- even if she is capable. There’s something very lovely about a feminine lady that those around you will appreciate- because it’s how God intended for things to be.
Anna is very beautiful and radiant. Her physical features may not be what the world would classify as “stunningly beautiful”, but no one around her notices. Her ever-in-place smile lights up her face so brilliantly, it’s hard to see anything else. Where is your smile? Do you wear a genuine one, or is it tucked away? She’s joyful and this radiates to everyone around her. While feminine and discreet, Anna is very vibrant. She’s friendly to her neighbors and others she meets, and the first to welcome a stranger. Are you friendly and approachable? Do you make an effort to approach others who may be uncomfortable?
Our heroine is sweet and kind. She delights in spending time with children and babies. Her family and friends all know they can come to her with anything they’re struggling with or bothered by, because she’s compassionate. She isn’t judgmental, but loving. How do people feel about you? Are you adored by the children around you? If this isn’t something you’ve tried much, do! You will be greatly blessed.
Anna is also gentle. It shows through in her tone of voice as she speaks and in her movement while she’s cradling a newborn. What about you? Is your tone calloused and harsh? Do you do things in jerky patterns, or with grace and gentleness? I’m not talking about every movement you make needing to be “perfectly graceful” (some of us are just really good at tripping!), but the “aroma” you’re spreading around you. Are you too hurried to be gentle to the child bothering you for the one hundredth time?
We’ve mentioned that Anna’s discreet. Synonyms of “discreet” include: modest, conservative and thoughtful, while antonyms would include flirtatious, thoughtless and rash. Flirting, and anything opposite discreet is very popular these days. In fact, many discreet women are even referred to as doormats! Don’t be bothered by the world’s opinion of you. John tells us that the world will hate us for following Christ. Ladies, we need to be ever so careful in this quality, which is mainly an attitude. Once more, however, if your heart is right it will show through in dress. It doesn’t matter how conservatively you’re dressed; if you aren’t being discreet in your actions, it does no good.
Anna is actively seeking God with her whole heart. Are you? No matter where we are in life, no matter how young or old, this is all-important. We should spend our entire lives living for Christ, searching after Him. Do you seek to spend time with God? How about serving Him, through serving others in menial ways? Now, as singles, is one of our largest opportunities to seek after and serve Christ- are you taking advantage of that, or are you wasting your teen years?
All of this leads to the way Anna chooses to dress. She dresses modestly, because it reflects her King, and heart. She earns more respect and is treated like a lady when she dresses like one. How about you? Are there areas in your heart attitude that need to be changed, so you can model Christ more brilliantly? Does your clothing reflect your attitude? May God bless you, my sisters, on your journey closer to the Father’s heart!