I grew up in an era where dressing up was a sign of respect not only for your own well-being but because the occasion for which you got dressed in the first place demanded it. Those days are gone.
Today, dressing down seems to be the rule for everything from carnival places to sacred spaces. I wish I knew why this is such a trend. Pastors grace the platform in tennis shoes, blue jeans, and a t-shirt. “Just as I am” no longer refers to the blackness of our spiritual heart but the tattiness of our physical dress. And I can’t help but wonder if maybe, just maybe, the state of attire on the platform reveals the state of the soul in the church.
Is it possible, the more casual we have become with the sacred, the more insouciant we have become in our passion for Christ?
I’m not referring to a legalistic set of rules which are set out to determine the level of a person’s holiness.
I am suggesting that in throwing off the bondage of legalism, we trashed the awe of the supernatural.
I seem to recall that initially, dressing down was for the purpose of reaching a specific spiritual market. A noble gesture. A generous kindness. Using whatever means possible to reach people with the gospel.
But watch yourself, or you also may be tempted.
I can’t help but wonder if, in our zeal to reach the lost, we ourselves have yielded to the subtle temptations of evil. Have we treated sacred things flippantly, loosely, without due regard?
Now before you all yell at me, “It’s not about the clothes we wear!” I know. I know! And Jesus chided the religious leaders for washing the outside of the cup when the inside was filthy. So is it actually possible to wash the inside of a cup without getting the outside clean?
And you know I’m not just talking about dressing down, right?
Father, whatever it looks like, help us to give you the honor and respect that is due you, inside and out. For our souls’ sake, in Jesus’ name, and always for your glory. Amen.