Spending time at homeschool conventions behind a booth leaves you lots of time for people watching. I’ll be totally honest – I don’t spend my time observing families. Rather, I observe outfits.
I left this last convention with the same old spark revived in my heart. I love fashion. And when I say fashion I don’t mean the Hollywood version that is supposed to leave you shocked and awed at what they wore (or didn’t wear) as they walked down the red carpet.
I love observing what average moms wear; especially homeschool moms who spend all day at home with their children and can easily fall into the rut of not caring how they look.
There is an argument that we should be plain and simple and not care about our clothing. The simpler we can look the better. I once believed that argument. Be clean, tidy and plain.
I honestly reject that now.
Before you gasp and think I’ve lost my mind, let me reassure you that I haven’t gone to the other extreme and think our clothing should be as elaborate and expensive as possible. Not at all!
What I now appreciate is an outfit that is put together nicely. It all blends together, from the shoes worn to the earrings they might have on. The outfit reflects the women’s personality and you can easily tell if she is a bubbly person by the brighter colors she might be wearing, versus the darker colors of a more serious and reflective personality.
I love beauty. I love seeing women look beautiful because I believe God made beauty. He made the flowers, all unique, all with different colors, some more bold and beautiful than others. Some are more playful – think of the difference between the pansy (my favorite since childhood!) versus the rose. That happy feeling you get when you see the cheery face of a pansy in spring is a different feeling than the richly beautiful look of a rose in bloom.
Just like flowers, we women can be beautiful in our own unique ways. Just like the flowers are unique, our own personal styles will be different, and yes even our own modesty standards. I appreciated observing women in both jeans and dresses/skirts at the conventions. Their faces shown with excitement over learning and picking out the best items for their children, and they had joy over being there with friends. The clothing they wore might not have been super expensive, but it was up to date and thoughtfully chosen.
For years now the modesty group has loudly proclaimed that we wear skirts and dresses to be a witness to others. In previous years I’ve said it myself. Now I reflect more on how I come across to others versus just putting on a skirt.
I might be wearing a skirt but my hair is not fixed, I look horribly tired, I have on zero accessories and my shoes are clashing with my outfit. I’m not being a good example of what Christian Motherhood could look like!
I woke up super tired on the second day of convention. My face was puffy from sleeping and red, and I felt sore all over. Sean even remarked on how tired and worn out I looked. I went into the bathroom, scrubbed my face and put on makeup and fixed my hair. The difference was so remarkable that Sean couldn’t believe it when I walked out of the bathroom. It only took 5 minutes, but it helped give me the confidence to face the day, greet customers and feel more cheerful.
My focus these days is not so much on if I’m wearing a skirt or not. Sean prefers me to wear jeans sometimes and I’ve learned it’s all in how I wear them and how I present myself to my husband, my children, and those around me.
Do I radiate the love of the Lord in my face? Do I share joy and encouragement with others? Am I a testimony of the Lord’s beauty? Or am I simply overwhelmed all the time and drowning in fatigue and wishing my life somehow looked like this other person who appears to have it all together?
Do yourself a favor today. Get dressed from head to toe. Spend a minute longer on your outfit, not for your own vain glory, but rather to glorify the one who created you and who created the beauty that surrounds us.