When I was a lot younger, I wore clothes that looked more like underwear. On days when I felt like being conservative, I wore hanging blouses, if not low neckline tops, paired with low-waist jeans that were ripped all over.
Now I was able to document many of those days and every time I see them in my old hard drive, I also remember why I would always choose to wear almost nothing. It’s because I wanted to be attractive and desirable, and I thought I’d get both by flaunting my youthful skin, unbelievably flat stomach, and my hour-glass shaped body.
True enough, my sensual style caught a lot of attention. However, I never got quality relationships out of the crowds of people who ogled away. And I am talking about men, as well as women. Be it romance or friendships, the heart behind my outfits just didn’t win the right kind of people. Seems like confident people just couldn’t get along with insecure ones — or those who couldn’t get past the parades of flesh to define beauty and humanity.
During those years I also wondered why women who dressed modestly, would enter a room and be able to command respect and admiration just like that. These women could be wearing button down tops and trousers, but cause people to admire them more than those who came in micro-mini skirts.
It always puzzled me back then. How could women who didn’t even seem to give much thought about what they were going to wear for the day, catch more attention than those who punish themselves for the purpose of fitting into tiny dresses?
Looking back with my now less insecure and a tad wiser self, I think it’s because women who dress modestly are modest themselves. If you check the thesaurus and see what words also mean modest you’d find: self-effacing, humble, free from vanity. Paradoxically, what makes a modest woman attractive is that they are not full of themselves. In a room full of people competing for attention and attribution, a modest woman thinks of how she could not call attention to herself. And because this attitude is a rarity, she then becomes like a precious jewel, standing out in being self-assured without being self-absorbed.
This does not mean that a modest woman does not like fashion or style. This might even be fun for her, but at any point where she has to choose between causing commotion or unremarkable dressing, she would rather choose the latter. Because while dressing is fun, she also knows that life is not and should not ever revolve around her.
Women, yes, we are designed to display the glory and beauty of the Lord. But the beauty for God is far different from what the world has made it about. In the Bible, Sarah was obviously beautiful and yet she is commended for her submission to her husband and to the Lord. Jesus was greatly loved by the people because of His ministry and service, but was said to have been unremarkable in his physique. What God thinks is precious isn’t a pair of blue eyes, an attractive body, a beautiful face, but a quiet and gentle spirit.
In all these, there is a thread that definitely shows a lack of self-regard is lovely to the Lord. The more they thought of others and less of themselves, the more others thought about them and the more God exalted them. God is a God of paradoxes, after all. Be the first, and you”ll end up as the last. But be the last and you’ll find yourself first. Lose yourself to Him, and you’ll find it. Keep yourself and you’ll lose it. You’ll be attractive once only you’ve lost all desire to be so. And yes, there is just no way around it.