We are people with opinions. Lots of opinions. We are also people who usually gravitate towards those who look like us, talk like us and believe like us. Heaven will not be like that. There will be one common point to those of us in heaven: Jesus. You may be standing next to someone who is a suit lover. Get over it. You may be standing next to someone who lives in shorts and a t-shirt. Get over it. (Of course we may all be dressed in white robes. Revelation 6:11 And I'll have to get over that!)
Although there is a great deal of freedom in what we can wear in worship (see my other posts on "dressed for worship"), there are constraints as well.
We are asked to put on a heart of compassion, kindness and humility (Colossians 3:12-13). How we dress should be affected by our humility. Jesus did say that what is on the outside of a person is a reflection of what is in the inside (Matthew 15:18). I personally don't wear sleeveless shirts because my guns are just too large and chiseled. I need to have sense of humility in how I dress my arms, so people aren't looking at my arms rather than God in worship! (Okay, okay... they are more like chicken wings, but you get the idea.)
Women are told in scripture to adorn themselves in modest apparel with propriety and moderation (1 Timothy 2:9-10). In the Greek, "adorn" means to beautify by adding something. Paul is not saying here that women can't look beautiful! Quite the contrary. But he is saying that women should do so with modesty, with humility. The heart of the passage is also applicable to men. It's okay to look good! Just don't dress in a way which draws attention away from God! In other words, Paul is encouraging people to dress as they normally dress. Nicer than your work clothes, but not overly fancy. Some people use this passage to say that we should be dressed up for church. It doesn't. Just dress normally.
Here are some guidelines I offer , which reflects the constraints within scripture, yet allows freedom. After all, God is a God of freedom. More on that in the next post.
1. Keep It Clean. Keep your clothes distraction free. No inappropriate skin. No short skirts which could distract. No overly tight clothing which accentuate muscles and other body parts.
2. Dress As You Dress. Within the boundary of number one above, dress the way you usually dress. Be yourself. God wants you and your heart. Not a show.
3. Respect Others & God. We worship a God who is father and friend. Yet, he is also Almighty Creator and Wrathful Judge. Best not roll out of bed unshowered for 4 days and throw on the wrinkled clothes in the corner if you are capable of better. Oh, and spritzing some perfume or cologne does not cover the stink, so think of the person next to you.
I often will tell our worship team to Reflect Your Church. If the average person in the church is a suit and tie and that is comfortable for you then go for it. If it is jeans and a t-shirt, that's fine too. Those who are on stage should be a refection of the overall church body. There is nothing wrong in and of itself for someone to wear a kimono on stage. But within the culture of our church that would be a distraction for worship, so no kimonos.
Check in next post to be reminded of the great freedom we have in Christ in how that can affect how we dress for worship.
worship Him 24/7...