3 Steps For Teaching Modesty In Today’s World

The subject of modesty does not rise up often in thought, conversations or even blogs but as a mom I believe it is time to maybe bring some attention to the subject and discuss the need that society may have for modesty to become vogue again.

We are all aware of the saggy pants style. I’m sure I am not the only one tired of seeing the underwear of today’s youth. Bra straps that seem to be part of the outfit, I’m thankful for the wearing of the bra but don’t really need to see evidence of it. So, let’s pull up the pants and cover the bras of today’s youth and talk about adjusting their thought process to having respect and modesty for themselves and others.

How do we do that? It’s a 3 step process that starts from the time a child is born. Let’s first start with a definition of modesty; it has been defined as a behavior, manner, or appearance intended to avoid impropriety or indecency. That’s a good definition but let us add mind in with behavior, spirit in with manner and body in with appearance since a person is made up of the mind, spirit and body. So, modesty is 1. a mind or behavior, 2. a spirit or manner, 3. of body appearance intended to avoid impropriety or indecency. Wow! Did you notice that the mind came first, then the manner or spirit of the person and then after the mind and spirit were dealt with then the body appearance was the last issue dealing with modesty. We usually deal with it the other way around; parents and authority figures usually worry about the body appearance first.

Step 1 when it comes to teaching modesty in today’s world start with the mind and the behavior that comes from the thought processes of the mind. If a child knows from the very beginning of life that they are a special person, unique there is nobody like them and that is to be valued. They have special talents and gifts that make them who they are. Now, I did not say that they are to be spoiled and made to think they are better then others.  At the same time a child need to be taught that all people are special and unique and need to be treated with respect. You have just taught modesty of the mind. A modesty of the mind that is not improper or indecent towards one’s self and the others around them.

Step 2 the spirit or manner of a person or we could say their heart attitude. There is a section of verses in the Bible that tells us how our heart attitude should be. 1 Corinthians 13:4-13 “Love is patient; love is kind and envies no one. Love is never boastful, nor conceited, nor rude; never selfish, not quick to take offense. There is nothing love cannot face; there is no limit to its faith, its hope, and endurance. In a word, there are three things that last forever: faith, hope, and love; but the greatest of them all is love.” If we as parents would teach our children these modesties of the heart that is not improper or indecent towards one’s self and others around them.

Step 3 is body appearance and how to keep modest. This is the easiest of all the steps. We have already dealt with mind appearance and then we dealt with the heart appearance. The body is just the shell that we keep the other two in. Remember we are teaching these skills, teaching and modeling modest to children from day one. Don’t begin habits early in their lives that are going to become battlegrounds for you later in their lives. Modesty of their body is appropriate during their toddlerhood through their adult lives. Also, teach your child to check to make sure that their clothing is modest themselves, you will not always be there to judge for them if something is modest to wear or not.

We have seen how modesty is so much more then just the body appearance of a person. That it deals with their mind and thought processes. How they as a person are important and other people around them are just as important. The spirit inside can be trained in modesties of the heart which are faith, hope and love. Is modesty going to come back into vogue by itself? No, but if parents want to see more of it then they have the power of instilling it into their children.


Shawn Snyder is a WAHM with 3 grown children and a loving hubby who gives her the freedom to follow her dreams. She has an online business selling personalized children’s products. And a passion about raising the next generation of adults with love, respect and some good old fashion work ethic. Visit her blog at The Odd Couple Blog.

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