Finding God's Goodness

Week Thirty-One. Modesty. Decency.

Month Seven – Valuing My Body. Temperance with faith produces modesty.

I’ve spent a lot of time in my life thinking about what I wanted to wear and the image I wanted to uphold. A lot of energy and effort has gone into finding the right outfit, earrings, shoes or purse. As a Christian, I need to ask “What am I saying by what I am wearing?  In other words, what am I “packaging” and advertising?  What am I trying to draw attention to?”  If my intent is to show off my body and draw attention to myself, especially in a sexual way, and pique the curiosity of another, then I have violated modesty, and the virtues of humility, studiousness, and modesty in dress and behavior. 

It is easy to get caught up in today’s fashions and feel we shouldn’t be judged by our clothes but the reality is everyone is judged by his clothes.  Why else do people try to look their best for a job interview?  Why else do most companies have dress codes?  The reality is that clothes send a certain message and reveal the spiritual disposition of the person.

Moreover, whether it is a person’s intention to show off the body and to arouse sexual feelings or not, to draw attention to oneself and pique the curiosity of another, prudently, a Christian must not be an occasion of sin for someone else.  Prudently, a Christian must not be sending the wrong message, and jeopardizing one’s safety.

Modesty is decency.  It inspires one’s choice of clothing.  It keeps silence or reserve where there is evident risk of unhealthy curiosity.  It is discreet.

CCC 2522

Thank you Lord for teaching me how modesty and decency support each other. 

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