Monday, August 31, 2009

the wonderfully workable wardrobe

A wonderfully working wardrobe begins with the principles of being unique, practical, feminine, modest, and creative.


What is a girl's wardrobe if not uniquely her? A person's clothes, we have heard, can tell a lot about a person, and it's true. You can learn if a person is more old-fashioned, classic, sporty, practical, artsy, country, etc. It reflects a lifestyle and a person's view of himself. What are your clothes saying about you? I hope it says that you put value on purity and that you enjoy being the unique young woman God has designed you to be.

In my humble opinion, a girl's wardrobe should display her individuality as well as serve it's practical purpose of protection, and it's providing of modesty. So show your personality in the way that you dress!

I'm kind of artsy and I like classy vintage styles, so for me, showing my personality in the way I dress looks like adding unique items or the classics, like pearls to an outfit. I love hand-me-down jewelry from the woman of my family. I have many neat pieces that have first belonged to mother, grandmothers, and sister. One lady gave my mother a bundle of clothes and in them I found this vintage print pillowcase that I made into a one-of-a-kind skirt that I just love!

You're a girl:
rejoice! Being feminine in dress doesn't mean being uber girly, but rather it means and says, "I am glad to have been made a woman!" Do your clothes say otherwise?

I think this poems sums it up wonderfully:

True Femininity

Is it curling the hair
Or painting the face?
Pinning on bows,
Pink ribbons and lace?
Flounce and frills,
Bracelets and rings?
Polishing nails?
Is it all of these things?

No, you can't pin it on
Like a bow in your hair.
You can't put it on
Like a garment you wear.
It's deeper than ornaments
Gracing the skin.
For true femininity
Comes from within!

It glows from a heart
That is gentle and kind,
A soul that is chaste,
An honest, pure mind.
Without inner goodness
How futile the bows,
For "pinning on petals"
Can n'er make a rose!


More on femininity and feminine dress here.

Do your clothes work in your everyday life? Here is a blog post about building a workable wardrobe and yet another about "styling the basics".

Must Haves for Your Closet
Styling the Basics

When I was younger, I didn't know a whole lot about the reasons for modesty. "Well," I would reason, "isn't it the guys' responsibility to guard their own eyes and control themselves?" Guys are going to have to give an account someday for their every thought and action before the Lord (thank the Lord for the covering of His son's blood), this is true, but so are we girls.

When I think about modesty, I often think about Romans 14:13 which says, "
Therefore let us not judge one another anymore, but rather resolve this, not to put a stumbling block or a cause to fall in our brother’s way." When dressing in a way that heavily accentuates the beautiful and attractive form designed by the Lord, we are causing a brother to stumble. So, be a good sister, even if it does mean putting in some extra effort. ;-)

Not sure what may be a stumbling block to the guys? Check out a group who dared to be candid on the subject.

Modesty Survey:

And you have to ask yourself, who am I wanting to attract? If your a wanting a young man who responds to his physical attraction without restraint, then dressing carelessly is a calling card for him. But if you're wanting a man who is striving for purity himself, than that sort of dress is going to turn him off big time.

Let's face it, there aren't many of us that have a lot of funds to work with when it comes to investing in our wardrobe, but that's okay! Why? Because, we are given the awesome opportunity to be innovative, crafty, and resourceful. Making a wardrobe of hand-me-downs, sale-rack finds, and thrift-store treasures can be great fun!

One of my favorite books captures the essence of what I'm hoping to get across,

Having no ornaments fine enough for this important occasion, Amy looped her fleecy skirts with rosy clusters of azalea, and framed the white shoulders in delicate green vines. Remembering the painted boots, she surveyed her white satin slippers with girlish satisfaction, and chassed down the room, admiring her aristocratic feet all by herself.

...Amy was gratified, but of course didn't show it, and demurely answered, "Foreign life polishes one in spite of one's self. I study as well as play, and as for this"--with a little gesture toward her dress--"why, tulle is cheap, posies to be had for nothing, and I am used to making the most of my poor little things. Amy rather regretted that last sentence, fearing it wasn't in good taste, but Laurie liked her better for it, and found himself both admiring and respecting the brave patience that made the most of opportunity, and the cheerful spirit that covered poverty with flowers."

Quote from
Little Woman by Louisa May Alcott

Any thoughts on any of this?


Monday, August 24, 2009

a truly authentic beauty: hadassah

So I've been stepping into a new world, set back in ancient Rome where men were forced to fight to the death for the enjoyment of others in the arena, and some were sold like cattle and made to serve their masters in whatever way they desired.

In this world, a little Jewish girl is captured after Jerusalem fell some years after Christ resurrected. The Jewish girl is sold as a household slave to a prominent Roman family to be the maidservant to a self-indulgent little mistress of about the same age . A converted Christian, Hadassah faces many challenges as she lives in a place that glamorizes almost every form of self-gratification and all forms of sensuality.

Her heart yearns to tell others about the hope she has in her, but in ancient Rome, "underminers of Rome's supremacy" are fed to lions as the multitudes cry out for their blood. Besides, the citizens of ancient Rome view Jesus as a "Jewish God", and who can compare to the Roman god's whose worship can consist of fulfilling the lusts of their flesh? As they live for the moment and to please themselves with whatever luxuries and passions that are available in this earth, they are totally blindsided to their need for a savior... the Savior. Sounds a lot like our world today, right?

Little Hadassah faithfully serves her mistress, even though she is bratty, self-centered, and rebellious. Unlike the girl's former slave, who did what she was told because she had to, Hadassah anticipates her lady's needs, seeking to serve her instead of merely obeying. Anybody can do what they're told. She even risks her life in order to save her from a certain death.

By doing this, Hadassah gained trust and respect, because it was evident that she truly cared, and that her thoughts were not thoughts filled with herself and her poor situation. And because of her lifestyle and loyal service, when the right time came she was called upon to share with the family she served about what made her different and gave her that evident hope, peace, and joy.

This story has made me realise just how important our actions are in regards to our testimony to others. As a slave, Hadassah was not allowed to speak unless spoken to. She was just a set of purchased hands. But oh how she impacted this family by the way she served them, the way she loved them, the way she was loyal to them, and how she endlessly prayed for them. They came to love her too, and grew open to learn about her God. And then in boldness, she was able to share about a God for all people: Jew and Gentile, who loved us so much that He sent His son in the form of a man to be the ultimate sacrifice and atonement for all the sins of the world.

Amazing. AMAZING. This is an authentic beauty if ever there was one. A girl who put her own comforts aside. A girl who, after seeing her own family murdered before her eyes, and then brought to the homeland of their murderers to serve as a slave, and one who had every reason to wallow in self-pity, anger, and hate, with the help of Christ, forgave and served with everything in her, to the point of being willing to sacrifice her own life for her mistress.

She was humble and submissive, with a gentle and quiet spirit. And after some time, as she grew in her faith, she also grew in boldness- boldness to share about her faith, even when she faced death because of it.

May we keep in mind how our life testifies to others. Our we self-indulgent, thinking only of "my life" like Hadassah's mistress? Or are we serving with a heart for pleasing God and not man, like Hadassah?

While reading A Voice in the Wind by Francine Rivers, I'm sad to say that I could see the inner man of myself some in Hadassah's mistress, Julia. She wanted to experience all the pleasures and excitement of the world, unaware of the traps laid before her. She got sucked in by the glamour only for it to lead to ill-health, depression, and severed relationships with those who truly loved her. In my case, I deal with fighting the yearning and urges of that kind of indulgence and self-centered living (it's a condition of the heart), and I praise God for sparing me the experience of learning the hard way like Julia. She learned that that sort of lifestyle may be pleasing for a time, but in the end leads to feeling unfulfilled, regretful, and alone.

A life-changing book, but a forewarning would be that it's not for the faint of heart. In it is described some of the harsh realities of that time-period.

Friday, August 7, 2009

the most attractive woman

A young man writes about who he considers to be the most attractive woman as well as what he's looking for in a wife. Very interesting!

The most attractive women I’ve met are those who are satisfied where they are, yet are open for more of what God has for them. This is a freedom only God can give.

What am I looking for in a Wife?

I want a girl who's interested in friendship first. I’ve run into three types of girls over the years—two of them make me chuckle, but with a hint of sorrow inside. The third class I’ve observed always makes me stop and think. And smile.

Just Say Hi But Don’t Be Ferocious

There are two types of young ladies, one at either end of the “girl spectrum.” The first is most prevalent in ultra conservative, homeschool settings. She ignores the existence of the guys around her, believing the lie that any interaction with a guy is either sinful or premature romantic involvement. That’s just wrong—God created both genders to edify and challenge each other!

I would say to that girl, just get over yourself, and say hi!

Then there’s the other extreme, the “ferocious females.” Now, I have to say that I appreciate energetic, engaging girls. What concerns me, however, is that with some of these young ladies, they display a sense of discontent with their singleness. “Need” is not attractive in a girl. When a girl already has an interesting life, she then has something to bring to the marriage.

Looking for Sarah

This brings us to the type of girl that is very appealing and attractive. I like it when a young lady I meet takes the time to both talk and listen, especially when God has given us similar passions in life. And I believe that mutual passion that has the power to keep us together for a lifetime. At least, I think so. Remember, I’m still single.

Beyond that, my attention is always piqued when a girl is walking in the freedom of Christ. The most attractive women I’ve met are those who are satisfied where they are, yet are open for more of what God has for them. This is a freedom only God can give. But I’m looking for one more thing: confidence. A girl who has placed her confidence in Christ, who isn’t “afraid with any amazement” (1 Peter 3:6) but resembles Sarah—that’s a girl who will make any guy turn his head. Including this one.

My happily married brother has wisely told me, “Find a girl who is willing to follow. But you must be willing to give up as much as you’ve asked her to give up.” That’s what Sarah and Abraham did. They followed God even when they didn’t understand what he wanted. Sarah trusted God despite Abraham’s deficiencies. Sarah wasn’t afraid. She was confident in God. Yeah, I’m keeping my eye out for Sarah.

[Article found here.]

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