(The long and short- fashion does not and should not define our faith.) My Evaluation: So hear me out...this one has been in the works for a while, in all honesty on the back burner really. I was hesitant to use it at all, but sometimes something is said or something is done in an instant that gives you a little nudge; and this topic convo always seems to wriggle its way in every now and then with not only fellow christians but friends who are non-believers.
Are your clothes the only thing that portray your Christianity? Are you hiding behind them so you won't have to step outside of your comfort zone, approach others, get to talking with them and sharing who you believe in and what you stand for? Are you letting them do all the work for you? I think it's basically well known to everyone that knows me that I tend to have one rare sense of style (to put it mildly). I'm rather quirky at times, often ethnic, I'm a boundary pusher, I like to try new styles, new brands, eras, looks, materials and patterns. I've always loved fashion ever since I can remember. Mum used to get some laugh at the outfits I used to pull together when I was a little skipper; however outrageous and colourful they would have been. I've always appreciated the craftsmanship, the culture, colours, art and the feeling of fashion. Your clothes are ultimately the thing that speaks volumes first before you open your mouth. Clothes express who we are, what we like and what we are like without using words.- Self expression so to speak!
I'm not going to lie I get a few stares, which I'm 110% used to at this point lol. Some people don't get it, perhaps they would feel more comfortable if I blended in like every other Tom, Dick and Harry with a reasonably long, plain skirt/ dress and my hair in a bun 99.9% of the time, but I'm sorry thats just not me; one persons idea of comfort is not for everyone. Speaking personally- I spend 5 days a week wearing a strict uniform, with my hair tied back, so when it comes to the weekends whether I'm heading shopping, into town, for a walk, a road trip, to a meeting or a conference of any sort, I'm excited to wear something different (in my case something very different haha) I don't apologise for having an unusual style because I'm only reflecting what is on the inside- one pure nutter that is lol! Different types of people dress differently and clothing certainly identifies us but it shouldn't be the only thing that defines us. Ultimately what you wear could discern how confident you feel about yourself and how confident you are to approach others and share Gods message; something so minor can make a difference. 1. A new hairstyle. 2. A sunny day 3. Walking in heels 4. Learning a new skill 5. Shaved legs 6.Lipstick 7.Glowing tan 8. Perfume By all means if all of the above make you self-assured and more confident to share Gods love, then what can they hurt. Some people don't know who they are and self discovery is still on their radar. Fashion is my way of showing that I know who I am, I'm sure of myself but ultimately I'm sure of who my Saviour is! I'm prepared for the everyday challenge of not relying on my apparel to show my testimony and what i believe but rather my personality, composure, attitude, manner and heart to shine my light! Just being me, the best me. I use my clothes as a turning point in my ability to minister to others, clothes can be used for mission and ministry; call it a strategic use of fashion in evangelism if you will. I don't know about you but I feel like you get down on the same level and playing field when you just dress normally and what you feel most confident and comfortable in. We could go down the line of the jeans and skirts argument but i'd rather not, everyone is entitled to an opinion, as I see it as long as I am identifiable as a girl whether I'm wearing jeans one day or a skirt the next, I don't see a problem with it, but I digress. I'm happy regardless if someone feels more presentable, more themselves in a long skirt, then I'm glad. I have no issues either which way. Sometimes it can be apparent that what others wear is to much of a focus; "Did you see what she was wearing, like would you ever!?", "what on earth does she look like?" Wouldn't it be just amazing if we took all that energy and time wasted judging how each other looks and put it to good use; like say...for Gods Glory!? What does our message of judging each other portray to non- believers-those we are trying to reach!? Comparisons are overrated and societal, so let us not conform, let us seek to build others up, not tear them down. The way I see it is, your best bet is to ignore those that don't understand you. It's not for them that I was created. I don't live to please others. I no longer get aggravated at those who might have an opinion on my love of clothes like I used to. As long as I am doing all things as unto The Lord, then why worry? I'm His Daughter and He directs me. CHRISTIANITY AND FASHION CAN CO-EXIST!
We are Christ's representatives and ambassadors in this world. I aim to present to the world that Christians are regular Joe's, we are just like everyone else. I like to think we look approachable and relatable. Fashion is fun and exciting because we can use it to recreate ourselves. With every new look, we can become something different, until, ultimately we find the one that feels the most like us. When we do the same with the attributes Christ has chosen for us, we also begin to transform. On a deeper level, we change and we grow, until we come to be the exact version of ourselves that we are meant to be. We discover that a love for Christ and a love for others is the perfect look! All that aside, let's not get bogged down with material things, for the time being; yes its nice to explore these elements of ourselves but the Bible tells us that God sees us differently than we see ourselves. He looks through our good and bad hair days, perfect outfits and fancy watches. God sees beyond petty titles, egos and categories. He looks past all of it and straight to our hearts. There are parts of Christ in us and I think we are most beautiful in His eyes when he finds that part of us beating the hardest. This is supremely what makes us pretty, handsome, successful and accomplished. The evidence of our Creator living inside of us and shining from within us! Don't get dressed with darkness; put on the armour of light and clothe yourself with The Lord Jesus Christ! We present ourselves to others with our clothes but some day the believers will be presented in robes of righteousness, with crowns on our heads for to cast at the feet of Christ. So before we go any further and wrap up this meaningful application, this is the one thing we have to savour because it frames the context for everything. The conversation of fashion is really about identity. In the context of our faith, it's crucial to remember our spiritual clothing and to identify ourselves first and foremost with those clothes! Never change who you are. Not for a second. Not for any man.
Scripture: Therefore, as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience...and over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity. Colossians 3: 12, 14. All of you, clothe yourselves with humility toward one another, because, God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble. 1 Peter 5:5
Do not judge by appearances, but judge with right judgement. John 7:24