One thing I know a little bit about is church. Adopted at a very young age, into a pastor’s family of ten kids, raised in a small country town, you can only imagine the hours spent in the place of God.
Aside from the normal no, no’s: getting white girl wasted, infidelity, stealing, lying, and murder, fashion and style of all things, seemed to bring just as much scrutiny to young women in attendance.
While I understand the need to be appropriate and modest at times, my view on what a women should be entitled to wear and when she sees fit to wear it, always differed drastically, from the somewhat plain Jane guidelines that were laid out for me. I mean, I’m no plain Jane! So why dress like someone I’m not? After all, isn’t fashion and style a way of expressing who you are? From your nail color to your shoes, what you wear speaks volumes.
After d@mn near a decade of tug and pull with my parents, the dryer mysteriously eating my clothes, and side eyes from other church goers, I decided to give my wardrobe a face lift. It was out with the ski high pumps and in with the kitten heels and flat boots, out with the form fitting dresses and in with some flowing pieces, out with the cat eye liner and in with the natural shadow. And while everyone else seemed content with my new look, fact of the matter was, I wasn’t.
You see, I felt like I was bending to everyone’s will and if I had to dress a certain way to be “liked” I didn’t want it! It wasn’t long before my edgy, New York girl style returned. I may have stuck out like a sore thumb in the little country town I was raised in, but I was me.
Moral of the story: I wasn’t at church for the fashion. I was there to get right and I’m positive God was paying more attention to where my heart was, than where my hemline fell. The whispers were just distracting me from bettering myself.
Now, I’m not saying pop bottles and show up in service the next day mascara running down your face, lip stick stains on your dress, and hungover (not that I’ve done this before).
I’m saying that you can be you and be with God! He’s just happy to see your face…
Words By: Ruthie Hawkins