Unfortunately, we don't often let the Cross shape our thinking. We don't stare at it long enough. When the question of modesty comes up, we toss reservation in the trash. We forget the cost of sin. We forget how serious our offenses are to a holy God. By moving on from the Cross, we belittle the opinion of God. We let the world gain a foothold in our lives.~Hannah Farver,Uncompromising (pp. 112-113)
Modesty is becoming obsolete in our society. In fact, our culture seems to pride itself on its complete lack of modesty. Television shows and advertisements are saturated with innuendo. Magazine covers parade scantily clad women surrounded by copy that should make us blush. Even office conversations are filled with double entendres. We flaunt our sexuality, consider no topic as taboo. How can we instruct our children to be discreet when we have no understanding of discretion ourselves?
Girls are having conversations in front of boys that they should never have. They discuss things with boys that, just a few generations ago, weren't even talked about among girls. They brag about their escapades in hopes of drawing attention to themselves. Oftentimes, they're learning it from their parents. How can we expect our children to be discreet when we are not discreet ourselves?
And our children's lack of discretion doesn't just play out in their small corner of the world. Often, it's put on the world wide web through social media, for everyone to see. Take a look at your daughter's Facebook feed and you're likely to find her friends have posted photos and status reports that belie claims of innocence and being a "good" girl. The lure of creating a different "on screen" persona can be powerful. Text messaging and social media gives a false sense of freedom to post or write anything, which can be toxic to a teenager who already has a limited capability to understand consequences.
Discretion isn't just about avoiding explicit or suggestive content. Being modest means calling attention to Christ rather than ourselves. Mothers, are we modeling this for our daughters? Are we teaching them to point others to Christ in their speech, actions, and in their online presence? I know I have not been the example that I should be in this regard. I also know I cannot expect my daughter to meet standards of thought, speech and deed that I have not reached myself. The truth is, our daughters are learning from us. If we're troubled by her lack of modesty, perhaps we need look no further than the mirror.
~Desiring Virtue recently hosted a series on modesty, that can be found here.
~Today at my blog, I'm sharing the guidelines I've established for modesty in social media.