Saturday, 27 April 2013

Friends Weddings!

This is rather a random post, but these photos were so lovely that I just had to share the links with you all. They are from the weddings of two godly couples I know, and I had the priviledge of attending both ceremonies. :) 


Congratulations  Israel and Lina, and Jono and Olivia! May the Lord bless you all as continue to serve Him! 

 


Falling Plates

Well, I'm back from camp everybody! It was an absolutely amazing time, and I can't wait to tell you all about it!! But I will wait till I have some pictures, and more energy!! A week full of fun, friendship, fellowship, voice-losing, very little sleep and 8 hour trips has taken its toll - but it was all totally worth it!! :D 

But anyway, I saw this video this morning, and I just had to share it - it is incredible! Please take a moment and watch it :) I'll just warn you now though that it does have some upsetting content, so I wouldn't recommend it to younger viewers. But it is very powerful, and it truly spoke to my heart!
I will be back soon to tell you all about camp!! :D 
Love from

Thursday, 25 April 2013

ANZAC Day 2013

Hi all!

It is just turning 7.00am here and I have just got back from our city's ANZAC day service. Amid pouring rain (there were lots of umbrellas out!) we heard some speeches and watched wreaths being laid in commemoration and tribute of all the people lost in conflicts that New Zealand has been part of, notably World Wars I and II. This is a day of remberance for those in both Australia and New Zealand, and you can read more about it and its origins here: http://www.nzhistory.net.nz/war/anzac-day/introduction.

Anyway, as a little reminder as to why today is important, I thought I would post this music video, The Victory, by New Zealander Holly Christina.



God bless and I hope you all spend some time today thanking God for the peace and security He has given our country.

From,


Sunday, 21 April 2013

For A Reason...

You are who you are for a reason. 
You're part of an intricate plan. 
You're a precious and perfect unique design, 
Called God's special woman or man. 
You look like you look for a reason. 
Our God made no mistake. 
He knit you together within the womb, 
You're just what He wanted to make. 
The parents you had were the ones He chose, 
And no matter how you may feel, 
They were custom-designed with God's plan in mind, 
And they bear the Master's seal. 
No, that trauma you faced was not easy. 
And He wept that it hurt you so; 
But it was allowed to shape your heart
So that into His likeness you'd grow. 
You are who you are for a reason, 
You've been formed by the Master's rod. 
You are who you are, beloved, 
Because there is a God! 
Poem by Russell Kelfer

I heard that poem today, and just had to share it! Isn't it beautiful?! 
Well, I'm off to camp for a week (this camp, the one Violet and I went on last year), with my brother and my friend Charlotte, which is pretty exciting!! So anyway, you won't hear from me for a week, but I will be sure to update you all when I get back :D 

Have a most blessed week, 
Love from

Saturday, 20 April 2013

Real Beauty Sketches

 I saw this on one of my favourite blogs Paper Mache this morning, and I just had to share it! I know its an advert, but wow, the message it presents is amazing...
What do you think of it??
God bless, 

Friday, 19 April 2013

A Small World...

Guess what?? Something really cool happened to me the other day when I hopped online :) I saw we had a new follower on our blog, so I looked them up, and journeyed over to their blog. The blog, called From L&P to English Tea is run by a blogger called Anjali - turns out she used to go to my church back when she lived in NZ. Now she's in the UK. And this is how she found out about our blog: 
That's right - she was awarded our very own blog award :D How cool is that?! We didn't really expect out award to go very far, but we are so thrilled that it did!! Such a small world haha (If you would like to have a go at the award, you can find it here:

By the way, Anjali's blog is really cool, and you should totally go check it out :) I found some super interesting things on it! One of the things is this Lists project from yet another blog, which I am definitely going to try.
It is from the blog Moorea Seal, and the project is called 52 Lists: A New Prompt For Every Week of 2013. I know it is quite a few weeks into 2013 already, but hey, too bad, I'm just gonna start late haha :P I think its such a good idea!! Here's what Moorea herself says about the project: 

"I've always been a bit of a list addict.  I feel so much more peaceful and content with myself when I've got a few lists going, from what I need to do today to my favorite r&b songs from 2002.  I love lists!  So I thought it would be fun to start a series on my blog for 2013 that focuses on List making, lists for fun, lists for self discovery, lists to bring you peace, you name it.  And it's all about participation!  Each week on Tuesdays I'll have a new list prompt for you to download and each week, you are able to link up your own list that you have posted on the web to my post.  This way we can all explore each others' lists!  I encourage you to print out a page each week, or simply create your own each week, collect them through the year and then bind them together at the end of the year as a little memento of 2013.  Or perhaps start a new journal just for your 52 List project.  Let's go on this fun and inspiring list making journey together!"

I've always been a bit of a list addict myself... I'm gonna be making a journal of these lists, and I might even share some of my lists here :) I highly recommend you try it out too, its a great way to remind yourself how blessed you are :D 

Well, that's it from me for now, but I'll be back soon, promise! 
God bless you all, and I hope you all have amazing weeks!! 
Love from, 

Monday, 15 April 2013

Our first production

Okay, so Violet has been after me for a while to post these, and I have finally gotten around to it! :D Here are the first three scenes from the first musical Family Friendly Productions put on. The play was called Psalty and The Take-Your-Time Machine, and tells the story of how Psalty the Singing Song book and the Kids Praise Kids (anyone else ever listen to them?!) accidentally went back in time! It was almost 2 years ago now - seems so long ago! I had the enormous privilege of being the director of the show!! My mum was the musical director, Lily, Hyacinth and I did most of the choreography, and Violet was the stage manager! So many amazing memories! :)



Well, I hope you enjoyed those scenes! :) I'll try and upload some more to Youtube some time soon, as well as some bits from our more recent musical The Flavour of Christmas, and a few parts from our movie too! 

Hope you all have an amazing week, 
Love from 

Sunday, 14 April 2013

New Blog: Rejoice in the Lord always! :D

Hi all!

Just a quick notice to let you all know that I (Violet) have started up a blog called Rejoice in the Lord always! which is specifically aimed towards Christians who are experiencing suffering, trials, or hard times of one kind or another. Violets and Daisies will continue to be the place where I mostly post articles I write. However, I have noticed that I am posting more than a reader could keep up with here, and a lot of the posts have been to do with seeking the Lord during the hard times. So I thought it was about time to place those posts somewhere seperate. I want Rejoice in the Lord always! to be a place where those who are going through tough times in their lives can be built up in their walk with the Lord. To find out more about the blog and its purpose, go here.

Some ideas I have at the moment for future blog posts on it are as follows:
  • My own thoughts on the subject of suffering.
  • Verses I find helpful and inspiring.
  • Quotes, music and resources about it.
  • Links to good sermons.
  • Excerpts from books.
  • "Inspirational sufferers" - posts about Christians who have endured great trials by God's grace.
  • Guest posts from Christians who have gone through hard times.
  • A weekly (Lord willing!) post on something to add joy to our lives: it will be easy for this blog to become a dreary and sad place as I will be posting on such a somber topic, but the verse I use as a motto for this blog reminds us that the Lord wants us to have joy even when things are hard, so I will also be posting things to brighten your day! :)
So please check it out and tell me what you think! :) At the moment, you will recognise a lot of the posts there as I have reposted posts on suffering from Violets and Daisies, but hopefully I will soon have new and exciting articles up! :D

God bless, and my prayer is that you find this blog helpful in your own walk with the Lord.
To close, I will leave you with this blog's main verse, which has been the verse I have returned to most often in recent years:
"Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice. Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus." ~ Philippians 4:4-7
To God be the glory!

Saturday, 13 April 2013

I love this!

Its those little acts of random kindness which really make a difference! :)
Love, 


Friday, 12 April 2013

What Can You Bear?

I have been getting so much out of Joni Eareckson Tada's book Glorious Intruder that I thought I would share a section I read today that really gave me a different perspective on suffering. My prayer is that it will help you too!

Over the years, many people have asked me, "How do you do it, Joni? How do you cope with your paralysis? How can you bear it?" I've wondered the same thing of others. Every time I look at someone who is totally blind or deaf, I think, How in the world can they do it? ....

Suffering, and our ability to stand up strong in it, is relative. in 1 Corinthians 10:13, Paul assures us that our Lord will never tempt or test us beyond what we can bear. The apostle further reminds us that God's grace willl never be in short supply. "And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work" (2 Corinthians 9:8).
Through God's grace, Vicky and others like her have been able to bear up under a severe paralysis. But God has not chosen that level of limitation for me. Yes, I am paralyzed, but only to the degree that I can, with His grace, live a joyful and meaningful life.

Not everyone can be trusted with suffering. Not everyone can endure a fiery ordeal. So the Master scrutinizes the jewels and carefully selects those which can bear the refining, the branches which can stand the knife. It is given for some to preach, for others to work, for others to give, and for still others to suffer. 

Where do you fit on that scale? Perhaps you're not paralyzied. You may not be deaf or blind or carry the seeds of cancer in your body. God know that you are not the one to handle - even with all of His resources of grace - that kind of suffering. 

But he has selected you to handle that particular, unique, individual set of circumstances in your own life. Your singleness. Your marriage. Your sterility. Your prision term. Your finances. Your job. Your unemploymnet. Your background. Your physical appearence, abilities, and educational opportunities. 

Whatever you would call "suffering" in your own life, God has allowed it. Even purposed it. 

Don't you dare think you can't handle it! First Corinthians 10:13 promises that you can not only handle it, but glorify God in it.

So don't be looking at the man with cerebral palsy, thinking, How does he manage? Don't be looking at the saintly wife who exhibits a submissive and quiet heart in an abusive family situation and think, I could never do that. Don't shake your head when you see a mom or dad with a Downs Syndrome child and say, No way I could face that.

Most likely you couldn't. Which is precisely why God hasn't asked you to. Instead, take time to seriously consider how you will remain joyful and obedient within your own particular, unique, individual situation. Accept your circumstances as a gift from His hand. Dare to thank Him for them. 

Not everyone could be trusted with what you're wrestling with today, but you have been so trusted. Find meaning and joy as you draw on His resources ... and persevere.

The grace is God's. The choice is yours.

Wow! Challenging, isn't it? The first thing I do when I undergo trials in my life is complain or begin to feel sorry for myself - I really need to change my perspective and see my trials as a God-given opportunity to serve Him and demonstrate His glory. Father help me I pray!





Thursday, 11 April 2013

45 Years Since the Wahine Disaster

Source: Wellington City Libraries
Yesterday marked 45 years since this famous New Zealand maritime disaster occured. For more information go to http://www.nzhistory.net.nz/culture/wahine-disaster. If you're ever in Wellington, I sincerely recommend that you check out the Museum of Wellington City & Sea as it has a display devoted to this disaster.

Years ago, I read a book called No Safe Harbour by New Zealand author David Hill and while I now feel that it's not the greatest read (some of the language and attitudes in it were not necessary), it still is good at portraying this disaster. To me, the Wahine disaster illustrates in a similar way to the Titanic (though on a much smaller scale) that life is short and fragile. Fifty-one of the people on this ship had no idea when it left Lyttleton that they would never get to Wellington alive. 

So....
  • Treat each day as if it was your last!
  • Serve God wholeheartedly now!
  • Do not try and put of dealing with sin in your life saying "I'll deal with it tomorrow..." for tomorrow may never come!
  • If you are not yet right with God, ask Him to be the Master of your life.
 God bless!


Book Review: Passion and Purity by Elisabeth Elliot

Passion and Purity: Learning to Bring Your Love Life Under Christ's ControlPassion and Purity: Learning to Bring Your Love Life Under Christ's Control by Elisabeth Elliot
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Goodreads Plot Summary:
Very few books on dating have stood the test of time like Passion and Purity. Its much-needed message remains strong and hopeful in an age when doing whatever "feels right" is common practice. Using her own life as an example, Elisabeth Elliot guides singles of both genders and of any age on how to put their love lives under the authority of Jesus Christ.

Passion and Purity covers dating issues such as:
-how to know which person is the right one to marry
-loving passionately while remaining sexually pure
-the man's and woman's role in relationships
-putting God's desires ahead of personal desires
-how far is too far, physically.



My Opinion:
This has got to be one of the best books on the subject that I've ever read! Elisabeth Elliot humbly weaves her own personal experiences with scriptural teaching to show that true love, true passion and true purity is not only possible but also enriching when we surrender this area of our lives to the Lord. I found this book so helpful and insightful and seriously recommend it to anyone!

Quotes I loved from it:
“I do know that waiting on God requires the willingness to bear uncertainty, to carry within oneself the unanswered question, lifting the heart to God about it whenever it intrudes upon one’s thoughts. Its easy to talk oneself into a decision that has no permanence – easier sometimes than to wait patiently.” ― Elisabeth Elliot


“If we hold tightly to anything given to us unwilling to allow it to be used as the Giver means it to be used we stunt the growth of the soul. What God gives us is not necessarily "ours" but only ours to offer back to him, ours to relinguish, ours to lose, ours to let go of, if we want to be our true selves. Many deaths must go into reaching our maturity in Christ, many letting goes.”Elisabeth Elliot

“By trying to grab fulfillment everywhere, we find it nowhere.”Elisabeth Elliot

“Our vision is so limited we can hardly imagine a love that does not show itself in protection from suffering. The love of God is of a different nature altogether. It does not hate tragedy. It never denies reality. It stands in the very teeth of suffering.”Elisabeth Elliot
 
“We are not meant to die merely in order to be dead. God could not want that for the creatures to whom He has given the breath of life. We die in order to live.” ― Elisabeth Elliot

“But the question to precede all others, which finally determines the course of our lives is What do I really want? Was it to love what God commands, in the words of the collect, and to desire what He promises? Did I want what I wanted, or did I want what He wanted, no matter what it might cost?” ― Elisabeth Elliot

“I realized that the deepest spiritual lessons are not learned by His letting us have our way in the end, but by His making us wait, bearing with us in love and patience until we are able to honestly to pray what He taught His disciples to pray: Thy will be done.” ― Elisabeth Elliot

Wednesday, 10 April 2013

Whilst Waiting of the DVD to burn...

I have just finished editing the dvd for the production we put on last Christmas "The Flavour of Christmas"!! So exciting :D I can't wait to share it with everyone :) But I'm having great difficultly getting it to burn to a dvd... I've just tried a new programme which will hopefully work, but the problem with it is, I can't let the computer go to sleep whilst it is at work, else it stops burning :P So, I have been busy on Pinterest, and I just thought I'd share some of the gorgeous things I found this morning with you all!
                                                   
Just SO cute!
This is SO me!!
Wow, sorry, I know that is a lot of photos, but I thought they were really beautiful/funny! Hope you all like them too :) And now that dvd has finished encoding, so I must go... See ya again soon!

God bless, 

Monday, 8 April 2013

When Times are Hard

I've had a very difficult day, but the Lord has seriously been at work even in the hard times! He really brought His word to bear upon my life today, and I thought I would share these verses for reading when "times are hard" as these all came to mind throughout the day, and it is my prayer that they will really help you too. I'll let them speak for themselves. :)
  • "...do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus." ~ Philippians 4:6-7
  • “Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted." ~ Matthew 5:4
  • "I can do all things through him who strengthens me." ~ Philippians 4:13
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  • "Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing .  . . Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him. . .  Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change..." ~ James 1:2-18
  • "Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest." ~ Matthew 11:28
  • "And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” ~ Matthew 28: 20

  • "For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven... a time to weep, and a time to laugh..." ~ Ecclesiastes 3:1,4
My friends have also been building me up in prayer and by giving me these verses today, which really helped me! It's great to have such godly friends like the ones I have - I can never be thankful enough for them!
  • "So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us and eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal." ~ 2 Corinthians 4:16-18
  • "I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world." ~ John 16:33
  • "You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you. Trust in the Lord forever, for the Lord God is an everlasting rock." ~ Isaiah 26:3,4
  • "...fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand." ~ Isaiah 41:10
  • "Then they cried to the Lord in their trouble, and he delivered them from their distress. He made the storm be still, and the waves of the sea were hushed. Then they were glad that the waters were quiet, and he brought them to their desired haven." ~ Psalm 107: 28-30
If you are having a hard time at the moment, I encourage you to rest in the Lord, pray and search the scriptures. Allow Him to use the trials to shape you and conform you to His ways. It is hard, and certianly not pleasant at the time but in the end it is worth it!



Peter Pan

Peter Pan has always been one of my all time favourite children's stories, and I know it is one of Violet's favourite too. I grew up watching, and loving, the Disney version, but it wasn't 'til a few weeks ago that I got the opportunity to see the 2003 acted version, with my youth group. Well, I absolutely loved it!! :)

It tells almost the exact same version of Peter Pan as the Disney animated feature does, but in rather a different way...
This movie is filled with beautiful costumes, lovely special effects and incredible sets.

Personally, I felt they "adultified" a few things too much - some very slight references to things I felt they could have left out... I guess most people find that funny, but I just really don't think its nessasary. Don't worry, there wasn't anything inappropriate really, it was just a thought I had, thanks to a couple of lines :)

But I can honestly say that this did not in any way spoil the movie for me - I found it enchanting!! I would recommend this anyone who loves Peter Pan, magic, fairies, or who didn't want to grow up :D

To be perfectly honest, this trailer doesn't really present the movie as it is... It is a lot more magical, and has a lot less violence too! Either way, this is a lovely movie, which I'm sure most people would love!

And here are some of my favourite quotes :)


Love this one so much!!

God bless, 

Saturday, 6 April 2013

Describe Him: Active

Describe Him: A-Z Challenge Series
Active ~ given to action, working, effective.

I know it's not a word I would usually use to describe God but "active" is what I have come to realize He is. It is so easy for us to form a view of a passive God who sits idly on a cloud, but this is far from true! He is actively involved in our lives, and it is us who are so slow to see it! 

Here are just some examples of how God is active:
  • "For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart." (Hebrews 4:12, ESV) - God's Word, in the Bible is very active in bringing people to Him and convicting them of their need for salvation.
  • "...keeping steadfast love for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, but who will by no means clear the guilty, visiting the iniquity of the fathers on the children and the children's children, to the third and the fourth generation.” (Exodus 34:7, ESV) - God is actively involved in bringing about His plan for salvation while also bringing about His judgement which will ultimately be fufilled when Christ returns again.
  • There are countlesss examples in the Bible of where God was actively involved - in fact the entire Bible is about how God is active, particularly in the lives of believers but also in the lives of unbelievers, bringing everything to His glory and working His plan of salvation. It's really amazing! One thing that I am doing and encourage you to do is read lots of Biblical accounts of men and women, some who believed and some who did not believe in God and you will quickly see how God works actively!
I also love studying history because it is also full of examples of God providentially working. After all, history is really HIS story (no pun intended of course)!



Wednesday, 3 April 2013

To Wear or Not To Wear?

The other day, I was laid up in bed a lot of the day with a cold, and, as often happens when you have plenty of time on your hands, I began to think about and spend time meditating on the Lord. And for some reason, the thing that kept coming into my mind was the issue of modesty. 

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Now, I know that one word may make a lot of you want to quit out of this post immediately. I myself struggle sometimes with the term, thinking "Great, another Christian who wants to impose their views on how they think I should dress upon me. No thank you!" Well, I encourage you to keep reading as this post is written from my heart, and I truly think this is an area of the Christian walk which we all struggle with to varying degrees. Once again, feel free to disagree with me on some of the points I raise here, as the only thing that we should rely on ultimately is the Word of God in the Bible. But I sincerely want my own struggles to help you in your walk with the Lord, so please, whatever your view on the matter, bear with me. :) It would be great if you could leave your thoughts in a comment, as I'd love to hear what you think! And I ask you to forgive me in advance if I come across as "preachy" - I struggle with modesty as much as the next person, so this post is as much for myself as for you, believe me!
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Before I really dig into this, I want to state that I think that among Christians there seems to be a huge division over this issue, and that when you really think about it, there seems to be a problem of Christians either not caring enough about modesty or caring too much. That's right - it is possible to care too much about modesty! Very few girls I know have managed to reach a place between themselves and the Lord where they simply ARE modest - not being peer pressured either to focus too much on modesty or not enough on it. And the few girls I know who have managed to steer clear of either extreme are the ones who actually seem to show the Lord to the world most clearly. So now, I'll try and address some common issues I've come across in my search to be "modest". 

What is it actually?

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While everyone seems to have the vague notion that modesty is to do with honouring the Lord through their external appearance, the reality is that everyone seems to have a completely different standard. I'm sure you can identify with this. I mean, how many times have you opened different blogs with a focus on modesty which appear to have completely contradictary standards that leave you going either "How can she even call that modest?" or "If I walked out of the house in this people would look at me like I'm crazy and might even ask which century I'm from!" (Postscript: This is not a critique of any particular modesty blog, rather I thank all those bloggers who take the time to try and earnestly search for modest clothing. You have encouarged and helped me so much over the years!). I've lost count now of the many times where there is such a stark contrast in views, with some firmly convinced that to be modest means that you must be wearing an ankle length skirt and a neck high top while others will tell you that surely wearing a bikini is modest as you're still covering up certian areas of the body, right? I'm not going to enter into a discussion as to my own convictions on these views here, and of course those are extreme examples, but I merely want to point out that this is something which is surely confusing so many of us out there!
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To be honest, I don't really have any answers as to "what is modest and what isn't". I think it really is a lifelong search! As always, I think we have to look to scripture first and foremost and see where it is clear and not so clear. Some verses that have helped me in this area are as follows:
  • “Do not let your adorning be external - the braiding of hair and the putting on of gold jewelery, or the clothing you wear, but let your adorning be the hidden person of the heart with the imperishable beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which in God's sight is very precious.” ~ 1 Peter 3:3,4
  •  “Charm is deceitful and beauty is vain, but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised.” ~ Proverbs 31:30
At the end of the day, I think the reason why there is so much division here is that it is one of those "grey" areas in the Bible - there are some clear guidelines the Bible sets, but the reality is that the Lord's focus in the Bible is on our heart, with the way we behave in our external lifestyles flowing out and changing to be more conformed to His will once we are right with Him. We must bear in mind too that the way modesty will manifest itself will vary slightly with each generation and culture. So maybe the way to look at it is to see where the Bible places the emphasis and so to not focus so much on the external but rather on the internal. In other words, you need to ask yourself that if I really love the Lord, would I not at least be striving to serve my fellow brothers and sisters as well as demonstrating to the world that I serve Him by attempting to be modest? Is the way I present myself to unbelievers having a negative or positive influence on their view of the Lord I serve? Is maybe the way I present myself externally a reflection of my relationship with the Lord at the moment? 

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I'm going to briefly share with you my own struggle with modesty. Feel free to skip down to the next point if you are short on time as I'm aware this is a really long blog post! :) I just wanted to share my own story so that you can see that this topic really is something I have struggled with too, and to encourage you to keep trying to come to an understanding as to how to be modest.
I remember beginning to struggle with the concept of "modesty" aged about 12 when I was heading into the "terrible teens" and so was becoming more self-concious about my appearance and the impact it had on others. However, for some reason I reacted in a very different way to most others my age: while many girls spend their teenage years trying to look attractive, I spent most of mine deciding that getting attention and looking pretty in clothes was somehow "sinful". So I dressed in a way that undoubtedly was well covered and modest but certianly not attractive. Not suprisingly, I got my way - no unwanted attention was directed my way! :) Except...I gradually came to realise that that wasn't actually what the Lord wanted either. He was at work on my stubborn heart, and helped me to slowly see that attractiveness, being feminine and pretty was actually what He had created me, as a girl and woman, to be. Yes, I still believed that I had a responsibility to be modest in what I was wearing but now I realised that I should still be embracing my feminity too. So I began to wear clothes (especially my new favourite - skirts!) that I found pretty and girly and even began to wear jeans for the first time in five or so years (up till then I mostly wore baggy black sweatpants). Yes, I do still struggle with getting a balance in being modest, fashionable and feminine but the Lord is helping me and my prayer is that He will help you too! :D
Not Caring Enough About Modesty

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It grieves me to see so many young Christians viewing this issue carelessly or simply not realising its importance. As we can see from the above verses, while scripture is more concerned with the inward workings of the heart, if we are going to be truly expressing our love of the Lord and want to be a witness to the world than surely there should be some outward expression? You should be really worried if a non-Christian starts viewing your clothing as "revealing too much" - if even they are making that distinction than how much more should we care! Of course this will vary with each culture and generation, as stated above, but really how difficult is it to try? Yes, it may mean that you don't always match up perfectly with the world's view of fashionable (though I actually believe that with a bit of extra effort it is possible to both be fashionable and modest). Yes, you won't always get it right - we all slip up in this area at some stage, but our God is a gracious God and when we really are prepared to surrender our own preferences and put them under His guidelines than He will help us! Many others have written comprehensive articles as to why we should be modest, so I will not go into the arguments for it, but I strongly encourge you to look into the matter further, particularly if you struggle to see why modesty is significant in our lives as Christians.

Caring Too Much

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This section is really where the Lord has been convicting me recently and why I really felt compelled to write this blog post. You see, I think that this is an issue just as much as not caring enough about modesty is. Through my own life, I have come to realise that it is possible to be outwardly modest but to still have heart attitudes that are not at all Godly. Sadly, so many of us (myself included!) have been convicted by the Lord that modesty is an issue to be worked on, but have spent much of our time and energy obsessing over it at the detriment of other heart issues that need to be dealt with. I know for myself this comes in the form of a judgemental and proud spirit, whereby I am tempted to think that my view on what is modest and what isn't is the one and only correct view. I hardly need to say how foolish this is and yet how many of us conciously or subconciously do this! We read extensively on the subject, spend hours shopping for the most modest possible outfits and feel that in doing so we are pleasing the Lord, somehow earning "brownie points" with Him. Then along comes another sister in Christ whose clothing doesn't fit our checklist and so we feel smug and superior. If I'm truly honest, to my shame there are many times when I have thought to myself, "Hah! I wouldn't be seen dead wearing that, I must be a much more Godly Christian than she is, the Lord must be pleased with me!" Well, if we are going by the Word of God, where it is really clear is certianly in the area of our heart attitude so while I definately can see that an outward expression of modesty is important, I think it is even more important that we be aligning our heart attitudes to God - we need to remember that no matter how important we personally may feel modesty is, truly "man looks on the outward appearence, but the Lord looks on the heart." (1 Samuel 16:7)

It may also come as a surprise to you that I believe that if my own life is anything to go by, it is possible to be modest outwardly and yet to be completely immodest at the same time. For instance, a dear sister in Christ I know wears clothes that I personally wouldn't wear (in part due to the fact that we are completely different sizes) but whose whole lifestyle shouts to the world who it is that she serves and her gracious, Godly manner demonstrates a modesty that inspires me so much to serve the Lord more. Surely this should be our focus! Conversely, I have at times struggled with outwardly dressing in a modest way but acting in a way that even a non-Christian would find hard to term "modest" - in other words, the way in which I speak often doesn't draw attention to my Maker but to myself, and when that is happening dressing modestly becomes a sham and simply an attempt to cover up the horrible reality that I am a sinner who would prefer to boast about myself rather than the one I serve. Lord, I pray that you would help me and any other sisters in Christ who struggle with this to boast not in ourselves, but in You!

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Wow, what a long blog post! I feel that I have sort of gone on a rant about the topic as it is something that has been in my mind for such a long time, but I hope I have written what I feel is the truth with love. Dear sister in Christ, if you are anything like me you will feel like such a failure in this area, whether it be because of caring too little or too much about modesty. But remember that the God we serve is greater than us and has overcome our sins so we need to earnestly seek to serve Him but rest on His grace to help us in this area. 

God bless you, dear sisters in Christ, as you serve Him!