Wednesday, April 11, 2007


A parent recently sent me a note regarding modesty among our children. I've observed that the clothing available to little girls is starting to have an older and older flavor. I'm sure parents have struggled with how to maintain their child's innocence in the midst of a changing world. I would highly encourage parents to look at how their children (specifically little girls) are dressing. Are these dress patterns that you would hope continue through their teenage years, or do you plan on them become more modest as they get older? I know that standards set today will carry into their older years. The letter below expands one why it is important to encourage modesty in our young girls.
Another parent reminded me that often the dress of the children is reflective of the parent or whoever is raising them. I have often felt challenged to look at my own wardrobe to make sure what I wear reflects Christ-like character. Denise Nelson once told me about what a wonderful opportunity I have by being a younger woman leading these little girls. She encourages me to be a person that I would want them to model after.
I hope you can take to heart what was shared with me.

Dear Friends,
I know spring is in the air because my kids are asking for Popsicles and to run through the sprinkler!
None of us subscribe to the exact same length of skirts, age when shorter shorts are prohibited, skorts appropriate or not, or programs allowed to be watched. This is fine but for the one or two days we are together for a Sunday school class, community group, or activity we attend together, it seems we could all abide the same "higher" or more "strict" standard. I am talking to myself as well as all of you. If you only have one pair of long shorts then save them for when you will be at community group, for example.
This came up from something my kids and I were listening to on the radio. The author of a very good book I have read, " For Women Only: What You Need To Know About the Inner Lives Of Men", Shanti Feldhahn was speaking about her new book, "For Young Women Only: What you need to know about how guys think". She was talking about the results of the surveys and interviews she did of 404 15 -20 year old boys.
It did not matter if they were Christian and conservative or not. They overwhelmingly said that when a girl wears a tight top or one with spaghetti straps, they can't help but file her away as a picture in their mental Rolodex. Although she thinks she is just cute, fashionable, or possible sexy, she would never want him to picture her naked! But unfortunately, that is what the boys said happens. Even though he does not want to and as Christians we train our sons to look away and fill their minds with good thoughts, the picture is there and it is very easy for them to go from the remembering of the tight tee shirt to picturing the same girl naked! As moms this can be shocking. As dads this maybe embarrassing and you won't want to admit it. Its OK. The 800+ 15-75 years old males admit it for you.
This brings me to why I write this. Fine, fine, that is some other boy; someone else's daughter. But.... after those comments were made on the radio, I turned to my own 12 year old son. Please trust me. He is a good and godly boy. Loves his friends and family. Doesn't lie to us (really!). Turns the channel when I am not even in the room if an inappropriate commercial or show comes on. I asked him if what Shaunti just said was true. He hung his head a bit and said," Yes". I apologized to him that this is even possible and something he has to deal with. "Is this a problem with girls you know, Son?" "Yes, sometimes," he said. Now I know that this is uncomfortable and I can not ask my son to tell you all this story or have him ask our friends to not wear thus and such. BUT I ,being the speaking the truth in love kind of gal that I am, can say this.
We are a family. We spend time together. A lot of time, tears, growing, laughter, and training is done through our relationships in Christ. I want all the kids to be safe, loved, respected, to be free to be young and not worry about what others may be thinking or picturing. These are the only "youth groups" that some of us have. They should be able to feel like sisters and brothers not like they need to avoid each other. We are not perfect, but this is something that needs to be addressed and continue to be so.
I looked up the dress code for Salem/Keizer public schools and clipped a few items to be discussed. The ball is in your court now parents. Let's get a consensus before the weather gets any warmer.
Thanks for your consideration. I just read a two great articles by Dannah and Bob Gresh called The Clothes Crisis and Helping Boys Stay Pure. They are the team that promotes modesty and keeping the female allure for marriage. Their website is The articles are found at

Your Friend
P.S. Our son read this email and approved it.

from the Salem Keizer School district website:
Our main purpose as an educational institution is to assist students in presenting themselves in a manner that promotes a positive and productive school environment, personal pride, and academic success. Students' dress shall be modest, neat, clean, and in keeping with health, sanitary, and safety practices. To clearly establish this climate, the following are not acceptable:
-Clothing which compromises modesty. Immodest clothing such as tank tops, halter tops, tube tops, muscle shirts, backless tops/dresses or see through attire. Clothing that exposes inappropriate areas including undergarments, shoulders, and midriffs shall not be worn at school. Shorts and skirts that do not cover the mid thigh area. Fashion holes in pants must be below the thigh. Pants designed to sag below the hips will not be allowed. Pant legs must not drag on the ground.

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