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Child Guidance

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    Section 15—Fitting Attire

    Chapter 65—The Blessings of Proper Dress

    Appropriate and Becoming—In dress, as in all things else, it is our privilege to honor our Creator. He desires our clothing to be not only neat and healthful, but appropriate and becoming.1Education, 248.CG 413.1

    We should seek to make the best of our appearance. In the tabernacle service God specified every detail concerning the garments of those who ministered before Him. Thus we are taught that He has a preference in regard to the dress of those who serve Him. Very specific were the directions given in regard to Aaron's robes, for his dress was symbolic. So the dress of Christ's followers should be symbolic. In all things we are to be representatives of Him. Our appearance in every respect should be characterized by neatness, modesty, and purity.2Testimonies For The Church 6:96.CG 413.2

    Illustrated by the Things of Nature—By the things of nature [the flowers, the lily] Christ illustrates the beauty that Heaven values, the modest grace, the simplicity, the purity, the appropriateness, that would make our attire pleasing to Him.3The Ministry of Healing, 289.CG 413.3

    Character May Be Judged by Style of Dress—The dress and its arrangement upon the person is generally found to be the index of the man or the woman.4The Review and Herald, January 30, 1900.CG 413.4

    We judge of a person's character by the style of dress worn. A modest, godly woman will dress modestly. A refined taste, a cultivated mind, will be revealed in the choice of a simple, appropriate attire.... The one who is simple and unpretending in her dress and in her manners shows that she understands that a true woman is characterized by moral worth. How charming, how interesting, is simplicity in dress, which in comeliness can be compared with the flowers of the field.5The Review and Herald, November 17, 1904.CG 413.5

    Guiding Principles Enunciated—I beg of our people to walk carefully and circumspectly before God. Follow the customs in dress so far as they conform to health principles. Let our sisters dress plainly, as many do, having the dress of good, durable material, appropriate for this age, and let not the dress question fill the mind. Our sisters should dress with simplicity. They should clothe themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety. Give to the world a living illustration of the inward adorning of the grace of God.6Manuscript 167, 1897.CG 414.1

    Follow Prevailing Customs if Modest, Healthful, and Convenient—Christians should not take pains to make themselves a gazingstock by dressing differently from the world. But if, when following out their convictions of duty in respect to dressing modestly and healthfully, they find themselves out of fashion, they should not change their dress in order to be like the world; but they should manifest a noble independence and moral courage to be right, if all the world differ from them.CG 414.2

    If the world introduce a modest, convenient, and healthful mode of dress, which is in accordance with the Bible, it will not change our relation to God or to the world to adopt such a style of dress. Christians should follow Christ and make their dress conform to God's Word. They should shun extremes. They should humbly pursue a straightforward course, irrespective of applause or of censure, and should cling to the right because of its own merits.7Testimonies For The Church 1:458, 459.CG 414.3

    Avoid Extremes—Do not occupy your time by endeavoring to follow all the foolish fashions in dress. Dress neatly and becomingly, but do not make yourself the subject of remarks either by being overdressed or by dressing in a lax, untidy manner. Act as though you knew that the eye of heaven is upon you, and that you are living under the approbation or disapprobation of God.8Manuscript 53, 1912.CG 415.1

    Care in Dress Not to Be Confused With Pride—There is a class who are continually harping upon pride and dress, who are careless of their own apparel, and who think it a virtue to be dirty, and dress without order and taste; and their clothing often looks as if it flew and lit upon their persons. Their garments are filthy, and yet such ones will ever be talking against pride. They class decency and neatness with pride.9The Review and Herald, January 23, 1900.CG 415.2

    Those who are careless and untidy in dress are seldom elevated in their conversation and possess but little refinement of feeling. They sometimes consider oddity and coarseness humility.10The Review and Herald, January 30, 1900.CG 415.3

    Christ Sounded a Caution—Christ noticed the devotion to dress, and He cautioned, yea, He commanded, His followers not to bestow too much thought upon it. “Why take ye thought for raiment? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow; they toil not, neither do they spin; yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.” ... Pride and extravagance in dress are sins to which woman is especially prone; hence these injunctions relate directly to her. Of how little value are gold or pearls or costly array, when compared with the meekness and loveliness of Christ!11Christian Temperance and Bible Hygiene, 93, 94.CG 415.4

    Bible Instruction for God's People—I was directed to the following scriptures. Said the angel, “They are to instruct God's people.” 1 Timothy 2:9, 10: “In like manner also that women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with shamefacedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array; but (which becometh women professing godliness) with good works.” 1 Peter 3:3-5: “Whose adorning let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting of the hair and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel; but let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price. For after this manner in the old time the holy women also, ... adorned themselves.”12Testimonies For The Church 1:189.CG 416.1

    Many look upon these injunctions as too old-fashioned to be worthy of notice; but He who gave them to His disciples understood the dangers from the love of dress in our time, and sent to us the note of warning. Will we heed the warning and be wise?13Testimonies For The Church 4:630.CG 416.2

    Those who are truly seeking to follow Christ will have conscientious scruples in regard to the dress they wear; they will strive to meet the requirements of this injunction [1 Peter 3:3-5] so plainly given by the Lord.14Messages to Young People, 345, 346.CG 416.3

    Dangers in the Love of Dress—The love of dress endangers the morals and makes woman the opposite of the Christian lady, characterized by modesty and sobriety. Showy, extravagant dress too often encourages lust in the heart of the wearer and awakens base passions in the heart of the beholder. God sees that the ruin of the character is frequently preceded by the indulgence of pride and vanity in dress. He sees that the costly apparel stifles the desire to do good.15Testimonies For The Church 4:645.CG 416.4

    The Witness of Simplicity in Dress—Simple, plain, unpretending dress will be a recommendation to my youthful sisters. In no better way can you let your light shine to others than in your simplicity of dress and deportment. You may show to all that, in comparison with eternal things, you place a proper estimate upon the things of this life.16Testimonies For The Church 3:376.CG 417.1

    Modesty Will Shield From a Thousand Perils—My sisters, avoid even the appearance of evil. In this fast age, reeking with corruption, you are not safe unless you stand guarded. Virtue and modesty are rare. I appeal to you as followers of Christ, making an exalted profession, to cherish the precious, priceless gem of modesty. This will guard virtue.17Testimonies For The Church 2:458.CG 417.2

    Chaste simplicity in dress, when united with modesty of demeanor, will go far toward surrounding a young woman with that atmosphere of sacred reserve which will be to her a shield from a thousand perils.18Education, 248.CG 417.3

    An Old-fashioned Idea—To train children to walk in the narrow path of purity and holiness is thought an altogether odd and old-fashioned idea. This is prevalent even among parents who profess to worship God, but their works testify that they are worshipers of mammon. They are ambitious to compete with their neighbors and to compare favorably, in the dress of themselves and their children, with the members of the church to which they belong.19The Signs of the Times, September 10, 1894.CG 417.4

    The Only Dress Admitted Into Heaven—There is a dress which every child and youth may innocently seek to obtain. It is the righteousness of the saints. If they will only be as willing and persevering in obtaining this as they are in fashioning their garments after the standard of worldly society, they will very soon be clothed with the righteousness of Christ, and their names will not be blotted out of the book of life. Mothers, as well as youth and children, need to pray, “Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me.” [Psalm 51:10.] This purity of heart and loveliness of spirit are more precious than gold, both for time and for eternity. Only the pure in heart shall see God.CG 417.5

    Then, mothers, teach your children, line upon line and precept upon precept, that the righteousness of Christ is the only dress in which they can be admitted into heaven, and that robed in this apparel they will be constantly doing duties in this life which will glorify God.20Christian Temperance and Bible Hygiene, 95.CG 418.1

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