Dressing modestly

Dressing modestly.

Dressing modestly.

Ate ano ba dapat ang suot pagpupunta ng church o paano manamit ang isang Christian?” Isa sa napaka-daming tanong ng little sister kong si Jean. Could you please give me some advice on how to dress modestly? Gusto ko nasa uso o nasa fashion pa rin. Gusto ko cool at comfortable but not at all sinful in the way I dress.

Mukhang challenge ito lalo na sa mga kabataan ngayon na ayaw pahuhuli sa mga in at patok na style ng pananamit ngayon. “Anything goes” ika nga nila.

Let’s be real. The Church does not view the human body as something ugly to be covered up. The body is beautiful. It is a work of God’s creation and in that it is good. In fact, it is only in and through the body that we can experience the spiritual realities of each other – because as people, we are spirit-body composite beings.

So, why the question of modest dress Ate Mhello? Why don’t we all just walk around naked like Adam and Eve in the Garden of Eden? Kasi nga po, unlike the Garden of Eden before The Fall, there is now sin in the world – it is as simple as that. Kuha ba? We dress modestly to protect ourselves from the lustful looks of others. If sin were not an issue in the world, neither would dressing modestly be.

Reality check muna tayo: Men are stimulated visually much more easily than women. Have you ever noticed that immodest fashions are generally a problem for women? Men walking around in low-cut shirts really doesn’t do much for women. Laki ng pagkakaiba di ba?

What we are trying to achieve, in dressing modestly, is not to give rise to stirring lust in a man’s heart. We do not want to give our brothers a reason to sin. And while not all men will necessarily lust after a woman who is dressed immodestly, many men do.

Some men have learned to control this. They have either learned to look away or they have trained themselves to look at a woman with respect. “I have made a covenant with my eyes.” (Job 31:1) We need to pray for more men to be formed in such virtues.

Unfortunately, all men are not trained in virtue! Remember, di ka lang haharap sa mga katulad nating believer, mas marami kang makakaharap na unbeliever sa araw-araw. So, when choosing our clothing, as Christian women, I believe we have the responsibility of ensuring that our dress does not tempt men to sin. We do this out of love for our brothers, we do this out of respect for ourselves.

Joshua Harris says in his book, I Kissed Dating Goodbye, that he knows many girls who would look good in tighter shirts and shorter skirts, but he appreciates the fact that they don’t choose clothes like that. This is a sign of respect for our brothers.

And, I saw this, saying “If you want a man to look up to you, don’t give him a reason to look down!” In dressing modestly we demonstrate self-respect. Again, self-respect mga ateng! When we show this kind of respect for ourselves, we can expect it from others – and we will usually get it, too!

So what clothes can you choose to wear, when many of the fashions for women are immodest? This is a real challenge! Kahit ako minsan nasusubok sa mga ganitong sitwasyon. Passion ko ang fashion. Mahilig akong pumorma. It is so hard to go into a store now a days and find something appropriate to wear. But it is possible – it just takes time and it often takes creativity! 🙂

You want something that enhances your natural beauty. You want something, lalo na ngayong summer at ang tindi ng init, you want clothes that keeps you cool but is not immodest. You want something that is in style.

So what are some general guidelines for modest dress? Simple advices ito na na-ishare ko kay Jean at ina-apply ko din sa sarili ko and I want it to share sa mga princesses of God.

  1. Do not wear clothes that are form-fitting. Tight fashions are really in, but they are also really immodest! If your pants don’t come up high enough (hipsters are the in-thing, now) then make sure your shirt goes low enough! (Say goodbye to the belly-button!)

 

  1. Avoid spaghetti straps and strapless garments. Here’s one creative way of being able to adapt a fashion. Put a light T-shirt on underneath the spaghetti strap top. Since this adds a layer of clothing, be sure to choose something light enough that it doesn’t get too hot. If you have a strapless garment, wear a light top over it to keep your shoulders covered appropriately. Choose light weight shirts – that are not see-through – if you want to stay cool in the summer. It is very distracting for a man to be able to see through a woman’s clothes.

 

  1. Wear appropriate undergarments. Don’t show cleavage! This is very stimulating to men and very distracting in women’s fashions. It is challenging for even the best of men to not have their attention drawn down when a woman is exposing her cleavage line.

 

  1. Don’t wear short-shorts and short-skirts. Dressing modestly requires us to cover ourselves appropriately. There are many styles of shorts that come down longer – and they look great. Skirts should come down far enough that bending over wouldn’t be an issue. Some would say at least to the knee, others would say two-inches or more past the knee. I am not going to pretend to be an authority on the issue.

 

One thing I do suggest is that when you get dressed to go out of the house, ask yourself this: If you were to run into Jesus walking down the street, would you feel comfortable with Him seeing how you are dressed? Remember, He does see you – for in “the least of your brothers” He is there.

Also, keep in mind that your body is the Temple of the Holy Spirit and that you want to adorn it appropriately, with beauty and grace. Clothe your heart in purity and it will be much easier to clothe your body in modesty.

I hope that these ideas help you in dressing modestly. I commend you for your sincere interest in wanting to do what is pleasing to the Lord. Be encouraged! Be confident! Walang ibang makakapagpaganda sayo kundi yung respetong ibibigay mo sa iyong sarili at sa ating Panginoon.

 

Your sweetest Melody, ❤

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Faith and Trust

 

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When I met Jesus, life became rather like a bike ride. Yung parang tandem bike. I rode in the front and steered, and Jesus was in the rear seat, helping to pedal kahit in reality hindi po ako marunong mag-bike. Hehehe!

I don’t remember just when it happened, but Jesus suggested we change places. Life hasn’t been the same since. Jesus makes the ride so exciting!

When I had control, I knew the way. It was safe and predictable, but rather boring—always the shortest distance between two points. But when Jesus got in the captain’s seat, He knew delightful “long cuts,” up mountain roads and down again at breakneck speeds. It was all I could do to hold on! (Just an illustration habang nagbi-bike, pero hindi po talaga ako marunong!)

I didn’t want to question His judgment, but once I couldn’t help myself. “Don’t You think we should slow down just a little? I’m scared.” He turned and smiled and touched my hand and said, “It’s okay. Pedal.”

Sometimes I got worried and anxious and asked, “Where are You taking me?”

“It’s a surprise,” He would say with a laugh. Gradually I learned to trust. I forgot my boring life and entered the adventure.

He took me to meet people with gifts that I needed—gifts of love, healing, acceptance, joy. They gave me their gifts to take on my journey—our journey, my Lord’s and mine—and we were off again. He said, “Give the gifts away.”

So I did, to other people we met. But the strangest thing happened. I found that the more of those things I gave away, the more I had for myself and to give to people we met along the way. And still our load was light.

At first I didn’t trust Jesus to be in control of my life. I thought He would wreck it. But He knows the bike’s capabilities and limits, and all sorts of tricks. He knows how to take sharp corners at high speeds, make the bike “jump” to clear rocks in our way, and He can even make it fly when the road disappears beneath us.

I am learning to not worry or want to get back in control, but just to relax and enjoy the view, the cool breeze on my face, and the delightful company of my constant companion, Jesus.

Sometimes we get tired because it is a long, hard ride, but Jesus just smiles and says, “Pedal.”

Let’s try to slow things down. Relax! Hinay-hinay lang. But most of all, stop, look, listen … and wait!  Warning signs yan na madalas nating makita sa mga dangerous places, such as railroad crossings-places of crisis where there is an interruption of the routine, your way, your road, your highway. Pag nagmadali ka pwede kang ma-hit and run at baka ikamatay mo pa.

Which is easier, to try to beat the train, to try to plough through the train, to jump over the train—or to stop for a few minutes and watch it go by? Mamili ka! It will soon be gone, and you can go peacefully on your way.

Trying to force the situation and push your way through just won’t work! God likes for you to give Him a little honor. You’ve got to put aside your own thoughts and partake of the Lord’s Spirit, through communion with Him. If you’ll do that, He’ll tell you what you’re supposed to do.

Getting quiet before the Lord shows you have faith that God is going to handle the situation, He’s going to take care of things. It shows that you trust the Lord. “Thou shalt keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on Thee, because he trusteth in Thee.” [Isaiah 26:3, KJV] If you’re not trusting, you’re going to be in confusion all the time.


Read…

Matthew 6:25–34

Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing?

Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?

Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature?

So why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.

Now if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?

Therefore do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’

For after all these things the Gentiles seek. For your heavenly Father knows that you need all these things.

But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things shall be added to you.

Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.

 


Prayer for the day…

You are a perfect God, Jesus! There is nothing that You can’t do, no situation You can’t control, no problem You can’t solve, no tangle You can’t unravel, no question You can’t answer, no burden You can’t lift. How could I not trust You?! Please help me to put my faith and my trust in You each day, to learn to rely on Your strength and wisdom no matter what problems I may encounter. Teach me to let You take control. Amen.

 

Your sweetest Melody, ❤

Only God can take away the pain

Photo by: Google Images

Photo by: Google Images


Maybe people may see me as super “halakhak girl”, a jolly and always happy person but I tweeted last day that “even the happiest people, cry”. There are situation in life that we feel hurt and we don’t feel God’s presence. He seems so distant! It is hard to think of Him much less pray to Him in my pain and suffering. Sometimes I may feel that He has deserted me because of the weight of my afflictions. He doesn’t seem to answer my cry for help! Friends, I am here to tell you that even if we don’t feel God when we are hurting, we need to realize no matter what suffering we are experiencing He is with us!  I am not alone! You are not alone!

I’ve learned a lot of things about God. Nakaka-amazed lang talaga Siya magbigay ng revelations. He gave me a clear fact that, He never said He would not give me more than I can handle. There will be times in life when I will feel like I am drowning and there is no one to help me.

The pain may seem unbearable at times, but God heals everything. He is preparing us for greatness, but we must be willing to allow Him to take us through His process.  God was, and is with us as we suffer. So take strength in knowing that as we suffer He is suffering too.

Remember that when God seems silent or not there in our suffering, He hasn’t forsaken us! We all forget at times that Jesus experienced all the hurt and pain we have had when He died on the cross for us. Therefore, He understands and wants to be a part of everything in our life. He also has never asked you to go through anything He hasn’t. I encourage you to patiently endure the pain and suffering because God is always present and wants to sympathize with us in our trials.

 

Why God allow the pain?

 1.  God uses pain to get our attention

Pain is a warning light. It tells us something is wrong. Pain isn’t your problem. It’s a symptom. It’s God’s megaphone. As you’ve heard before, God whispers to us in our pleasure, but he shouts to us in our pain. Proverbs 20:30 says, “Sometimes it takes a painful situation to make us change our ways.”

Paul tells us in 2 Corinthians 7:9, “I am glad not because it hurts you, but because the pain turns you to God.” Sometimes it takes pain to get us to do what God wants us to do.

Remember the story of Jonah? Jonah was going one way and God said, “I want you to go the other way.” So he provided a typical Mediterranean cruise for him – a whale! And, at the bottom of the ocean, Jonah said, “When I had lost all hope I once again turned my thoughts to the Lord.” God uses pain to get our attention.

2.  God uses pain to teach us to depend on him.

You don’t know that God is all you need until God’s all you got. Paul says it this way in 2 Corinthians 1:8-10 (TLB): “We were crushed and overwhelmed and saw how powerless we were to help ourselves but that was good for then we put everything into the hands of God who could save us and he did help us.”

If you never had a problem, you’d never know God could solve it. God allows pain to teach you to depend on Him. The Bible says in Psalm 119:71: “It was the best thing that could have happened to me for it taught me to pay attention to your laws.” The truth is, some things we only learn through pain. Depending on God is one of those things.

3. God allows pain to give me a ministry to others.

Pain prepares you to serve. Paul says in 2 Corinthians 1:4 (NLT), “He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others. When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us.” Everybody needs recovery of some type. Nobody’s perfect. Who can better help an alcoholic than somebody who has struggled with alcoholism? Who can better help somebody dealing with the pain of abuse than someone who was abused themselves? God wants to use and recycle the pain in our lives to help others, but we have to be open and honest about it.

Imagine the army of ministers we could train in our congregation if we helped people use our past pain as an opportunity for ministry. God never wastes a hurt!

Do not leave God out of your suffering. Let Him take control of your life. God loves us and He wants to comfort you. God brings hope and peace. Never be afraid to face your trials because Jesus paid the price for you on the cross!  Unfortunately, the pain, suffering and the trials will not disappear or vanish but things will get better.  God will help you figure this out.

Yes! ….this too shall pass.

 

Your sweetest Melody, ❤