No Skirts. No Suits. No Service : a response
Wow, the response from this discussion has been diverse. Clothes are something that people obviously care a lot about. I had a second part to this article started, but because of the amount of comments and concerns I’m going to postpone that. I’d like to comment on the concerns and ideas I’ve been hearing. I will post the second part which is about modesty sometime this coming week. I have added a poll, would you mind to vote? I would love to get a snapshot of the varying ideas.
A friend told me this morning that they found my article offensive. I appreciate her honesty with me, and think it’s safe to assume that others shared her view. She felt that I put everyone who goes to a conservative church in a box. She felt I was wrong to assume that all people who dress up for church is judging others or doing so to make themselves feel righteous. I am sorry for this, and she is absolutely right. Certainly, many people do not feel the way I characterized in my first article. How could I possibly know the hearts of those around me? I was speaking very directly about my perception. My perception cannot be placed on those around me. It is obvious from the comments and e-mails that many share my view and others do not. I would assume that since someone voiced their concern there are probably others who were offended. If you were, I sincerely apologize for characterizing you negatively. It was not my intent.
Another concern voiced in the comments and by a few others was dressing up for the occasion, which is coming to God’s house. God’s holiness is very important. His holiness is a central attribute in my mind. His Holiness is something we should be focused on when we pray, when work, when we attend church, and in whatever we do. While I don’t know of any specific passages that command us to dress up, certainly the idea of respecting God’s Holiness is a valid point. We do come together to worship God and when two or three are gathered together in his name he is in the midst of them. When we dress up to show our reverence for God and His house I think it is a good thing. If you feel that dressing up shows respect for God’s Holiness I understand that and am supportive.
The issue I was trying to address was that our clothes should not define who we are, and what we wear can even be a hindrance. If you are dressing up because you want to acknowledge God’s holiness on Sunday, I support you in that. My concern is that this tradition has morphed into a requirement. This was the issue I was focusing on. If what we wear on Sunday is an outpouring of the heart; that is a good thing. If we wear something to be accepted by our peers or be looked upon as “good Christians” then it is probably not from good motivation. I raised questions based on my perceptions and experiences because that’s what I understand. I’m thankful for the different views that have been shared, it gives good perspective.
It is clear that many share my concerns. I hope that in voicing our shared concern you will grow in grace in understanding your Brothers and Sisters in Christ who disagree with you.
For those who disagree with the view I suggested, I hope you will take the knowledge of others feelings and use that to grow in grace as well.
It is clear from this discussion that no one wants others, especially those who do not know the Lord, to feel uncomfortable at church. I don’t know how we do this. Do we have people come to church a little less formal so that if guests come they feel welcome? Do we go out of our way to buy Sunday clothes or do we just wear our best from everyday life? I’m sure there are better suggestions out there, share them!
I’m looking forward to reading Scripture filled responses!