"And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him." - Colossians 3:17
The Bible tells us that whatever we do, we should do it for the Lord Jesus Christ. Whether it's waking up or sleeping, eating well or working in our workplaces, or even in our daily relationships, all that we do should be to the glory of the Lord.
Many Christians around the world understand that we can glorify God in everything we do and say. Not as many, however, are aware that we can either glorify or give a wrong testimony about Christ with what we are wearing.
So for this article, I'd like us to talk about one thing that should matter to every God-fearing Christian who desires to honor the Lord in everything: clothing that glorifies Christ.
Does your clothing honor the Lord?
Some Christians out there think our choice of clothing doesn't matter as much as the words that we say and the actions we do, but it does. It matters because people see us, and even without hearing the words we say or witnessing for themselves the things that we do, the clothing that we wear tells them many things in such a short amount of time.
For example, let's talk about something important to Christian men out there: women's clothing. Why is this important to men? It's because so many men struggle in the area of purity.
Suppose a brother invites an unbelieving friend to church, only to find the female worship leader wearing something so revealing that it disturbs the Christian (even plays with his mind) and gives a bad testimony towards the unbeliever. What will the unbeliever think? Here are a few possibilities:
- "So it's OK for me to dress like that after all?!"
- "Hmm, I guess women in church are just the same as women outside it"
- "So Jesus doesn't care what we look like or how much skin we show?"
- "My mom dresses more appropriately than that woman up there"
No offense, sisters, but that's the reality. What we wear speaks volumes.
And the same goes for men in church: you don't want to be wearing the kind of clothing that screams fleshly machismo and perversion to every person who sees you, do you? If your shirt is only buttoned half way or your pants are being worn low and exposing your underwear, I'm sure many women will feel just as uncomfortable.
What should I wear, then?
Friends, I will not tell you what to wear. Instead, I'll teach you how to choose what to wear. Here are some guidelines, based on 1 John 2:16, which says,
"For all that is in the world—the lust of the flesh, the lust of the eyes, and the pride of life—is not of the Father but is of the world."
1) Wear things that do not entice lust
First, the clothes we wear should not entice the "lust of the flesh." Simply put, if that piece of clothing will entice people to sexually lust after you, don't wear it.
For the ladies, I would recommend not wearing very revealing clothes. Avoid clothing that looks like the tailor had a shortage of cloth, or clothing that stimulates the wrong thinking or could be an unnecessary distraction.
For the men, please wear clothes. Seriously. Some men are so proud of their muscles they want to show them off to everyone, even at church! Please, just wear decent clothes.
2) Don't just follow the latest fashion trend
Just because everyone is wearing it, doesn't mean it's pleasing to God. If what's "in" makes you become a stumbling block to your brothers or sisters in church, please don't even consider it.
Sisters, if the ladies around you show off a lot of skin, be an example to them of what real beauty is about: Godly character without the need to show some skin or be flashy (see 1 Peter 3:3).
Brothers, if the men around you look "cool" with their new shoes and all the accessories they can find, remember that what makes you look cool is the beauty of Christ in you. You not only lose the urge to compete with other men in terms of fashion, you also avoid the problem that being flashy (pride) and having a busted wallet (poverty) brings.
3) Put your confidence in God
Lastly, don't put your confidence in what you wear. You are a child of God, and your confidence should be in Him.
You don't need to wear designer clothes if you can't afford them. You don't have to wear "statement" shirts (see below) to feel good about yourself. You don't have to show off in order to feel cool. You can just rest in the fact that God loved you so much that He sent His one and only begotten Son Jesus to save you.
Bonus: Statement shirts
There are shirts with statements or sentences printed on them. Avoid wearing those that have ungodly or suggestive messages. Your clothes say a lot, and if your clothes have words on them, they will say a lot more.