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Can fashion glorify God?
Can you love God and fashion?
How can you have a job in something that is deemed “superficial?”
Are you loving this world if you love fashion and clothes?
Is a talent for fashion a God-given ability or just something you’re good at?
These questions have been swirling around in my mind a lot lately. I’m somebody that clears their thoughts by writing stuff down, so this post is more for me than anyone else. However, I know I’m not the only Christian girl out there that has struggled with this same thing and I hope this helps brings some clarity to somebody else.
*I am not a master of Theology. I did not go to Bible school. The following words are my own thoughts with verses taken from the Bible. I do not claim that I took everything correctly in context, so go read it and come to a conclusion for yourself. :)*
I believe that everyone was born with certain talents, passions, and skills meant to glorify God. Whether you use those skills in a job, a career, at home, on the mission field, or in your community.
Some are a lot more obvious than others. A doctor is the most obvious one that comes to my mind. You are helping the sick and healing them with the power of God working through you. To me, this is the epitome of walking in Jesus’ footsteps.
Matthew 14:14 (NIV)
“When Jesus landed and saw a large crowd, he had compassion on them and healed their sick.”
What about a teacher? You are shaping young minds to grow and be our next generation. Same with working in childcare and being a mom, just to name a few. It’s pretty easy that these are “wholesome”, God-given, make-a-difference jobs.
So we see that there are jobs where you have a gifting and can so obviously glorify God through them.
Then there are other career paths that don’t “obviously” seem like they would glorify God, but they do. By being honest, working for God and not man, growing your God-given skill set, providing for your family, and/or by being a light to those around you, are all ways to glorify God. Whether you’re an accountant, janitor, research analyst, construction worker, or (not limited to) banker.
Colossians 3:23 (NIV)
“Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters,”
Okay, so what about jobs that seem to have a bad taste in Christian’s mouths? Fashion, beauty, modeling, etc.
First, let’s look at God.
It’s no secret that God is a God of beauty. Just look around you if you’re not sure.
It’s also no secret that God knew a thing or two about clothes, colors, textures, and what would look good together.
Exodus 28:5-8 (NIV)
“Have them use gold, and blue, purple and scarlet yarn, and fine linen. Make the ephod of gold, and of blue, purple and scarlet yarn, and of finely twisted linen—the work of skilled hands. 7 It is to have two shoulder pieces attached to two of its corners, so it can be fastened. 8 Its skillfully woven waistband is to be like it—of one piece with the ephod and made with gold, and with blue, purple and scarlet yarn, and with finely twisted linen.”
We know God is a God of beauty and detail. And that’s the majority of fashion and other creative industries.
Yes, fashion can definitely have a darker side, but is it blunt or just true to say that everything can have a darker side?
“Working in the fashion industry is no different to any other job. Every industry is filled with lost, unbelievers in need of hope and a saviour. Yes, it’s tough and a place driven by money and lust, but I’m ready to be used by God to change people’s lives. We’re all called to be missionaries, and my mission is the world of arts. Though a dangerous field to enter, I know this is my calling and the place God wants me to so boldly dominate.” -Lisa Walden
God is not a stranger to fashion. Remember the Exodus 28 verses above? There’s a whole chapter dedicated to priestly garments. God is not a stranger to creativity either.
“I say this: God is creativity. He created the earth, he created the seasons – he made it so that we need to wear different things at different times of the year. In Exodus again there’s a whole section on designing the tabernacle – God is a designer too. So much of the imagery in the Bible is about garments and clothing, God is interested in these things.” -Simon Ward
There’s so much passion bursting around these creative industries. Did you know there’s such a thing as Christian Fashion Week? Buzzfeed actually reviewed it and didn’t have too many bad things to say about it. 😉
For me, fashion comes down to creativity. I always knew this about myself, but after reading A Cure for the Common Life by Max Lucado (would love to write more on that), it helped me narrow down my God-given talents into two words: design and create. That must be why I’ve always loved putting outfits together, decorating my house, upcycling home projects, taking pictures, writing, and more (yay to being the starving artist)!
“If God’s given you a gift, you want to do whatever you can to honor him through that, and I guess I have this gift about fashion.” -Jerry Lorenzo
Jerry Lorenzo, a Christian fashion designer has dressed Gigi Hadid, Justin Bieber, Kanye West, Kylie Jenner, Kevin Hart, and more. It’s actually really cool because if you click on his website it takes you to a video and the first words, without hesitation, are “I know that all things that are, were first in God.”
Some of you might say that he’s too in the world, dressing celebrities and such. Lorenzo’s take is that he “hopes to leverage his influence to expose his followers to faith.”
Whether you think Lorenzo is doing the right thing or not, I believe God has each called us to a different path.
“God has created you with the aptitude for particular skills and abilities, and with the inclination toward particular interests. Your design is the most important factor to consider in making career decisions.
John came from a family that was involved in full-time Christian service: his sister was a missionary, his brother was a pastor and his parents were Christian educators. Although he had very strong artistic talents and interests, John felt pursuing an art-related career wasn’t an appropriate way to serve God, so he became a computer programmer, working for a large Christian organization. Although he enjoyed parts of his work, he longed to be using his creative talents. He felt a part of himself was dying.
You are God’s handiwork. He created your inmost being, and knit you together in your mother’s womb. You are fearfully and wonderfully made (Ps. 139:13-14). You have been given work-related gifts that have been chosen specifically for you (Romans 12:6-8). God desires for you to use the gifts He has given you. Working out of your design will bring you satisfaction, will bless and enable you to serve others effectively, and will bring glory to your Designer…” via Church Staffing
So if working in fashion is okay, does that mean you can just wear whatever and call yourself a Christian? Aren’t there rules on how to dress?
Rules? There are none. That is if you’re looking for “how many inches your shorts should be from your knee” and “how thick your tank top straps should be.” Bikinis? Short shorts? Tank tops? Strapless tops? The list goes on. There is no checklist of what we should and shouldn’t wear. But we do have principles, the most popular being:
1 Timothy 2:9-10
“…women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with propriety and moderation, not with braided hair or gold or pearls or costly clothing, but which is proper for women professing godliness, with good works.”
1 Peter 3:3-4 (NIV)
” Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes. 4 Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight.”
Romans 12:1 (NIV)
“Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship.”
What does all of that mean? Notice that there seems to be a reoccurring theme that it all comes back to: the heart.
“If a woman’s heart is inclined toward godliness, she will wear clothing… that does not reflect negatively upon her personal testimony as a child of God. Modesty in dress reveals a modesty and godliness of the heart, attitudes that should be the desire of all women who live to please and honor God.” -via Got Questions
So what will set you apart from being just another fashion blogger to a Christian fashion blogger? We know we’re supposed to be in the world but not of it (John 17:14-19).
For me personally (and I think most cases are personal) this means coming to God with an honest, open heart and be willing to feel convicted by the Holy Spirit about the things I should let go of. For me, this means I will seek God’s wisdom every day to see how I can best use my God-given talents to glorify Him.
Up Next: Will God Make my Dreams Come True?