Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Why I Don't "Come As I Am"



Most Christians of today know what "Come As You Are" means, when it comes to churches.

I, however, don't hear "we accept you!" as much as I hear "free ticket to wear pajamas to church!"

As much as I am in favor of all coming to church, dressed up or not, I believe there should be a "specialness", if you will, for the Christian when he or she prepares to worship at the house of God, being that they have an existing relationship with the Heavenly Father.

I'd like to take this post to explain, from the Bible, why I don't "Come As I Am" to church, and, in thus doing, encourage you to reconsider your view of church.

     1. We Are a Peculiar People

If you are, in fact, of the born-again type, you are not like the world. It is literally commanded of you to keep yourself separate and unspotted from the world. Dressing like the world (amongst many other things, obviously) is deliberately disobeying the Bible's blatant commands of us.

[Christ] gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.
-Titus 2:14

But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar people; that ye should shew forth the praises of him who hath called you out of darkness into his marvellous light:
-1 Peter 2:9

Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you,
-2 Corinthians 6:17

Separate. Different. Set apart.

     2. Church is Sacred

So, do y'all remember when Jesus died on the cross, and the veil in the temple was torn all the way down? This specific event was significant enough to record in Scriptures in the first place because the veil was impossible to tear all the way down. (Here's some interesting info pertaining to the veil, if you have questions.)

Basically, in simple terms, God's presence was in the Holy of Holies, and only the High Priest could go in, and only once a year. This veil separated the Holy of Holies from the rest of the temple, but when Christ gave up the ghost, the veil was torn all the way down the middle. Through Christ's death, we now have God's spirit living within us (Acts 2), and Christ is now our High Priest (Hebrews 9).

Church today is mostly for the purpose of spiritual growth, and fellowship. However, you'll notice that it is still kind of like what the Holy of Holies was in the day of Christ. The difference is, besides not having the Ark of the Covenant, all of us can go and petition God ourselves, without needing a fleshly high priest, because Jesus tore the veil. He made a way for us to go to God's special room (or sometimes we call it "God's House") ourselves! Even though we can now petition God anywhere, not just in a specific place, it's still quite amazing, when you think about it!

So, when I'm getting ready for church, I'm going to God's house. And I know it, too.

This is special. This is sacred. I'm not going to disrespect this great gift (and God Himself) by misusing the liberty and treating the whole matter flippantly.

Separate. Different. Set apart. On purpose.

     3. Church is a Platform

Now, whether you'd like to admit it or not, you know that people are going to recognize the nice clothes you are or are not wearing. A lot of people use clothes as a reason to claim churches to be full of hypocrites, and such silliness. What? Nooooo. I don't dress up because I have my life all together, and I don't think you are a heathen for not dressing as I do. That's ridiculous.

But, as a born-again Believer, I know that I set an example.
  • I set an example to the next generation. There are plenty of little girls milling around the church, just dreaming of the day they are an adult like I am. I know, because I used to be one of them! So, let me give them something decent to aspire for.
  • I set an example for my peers. Yes, even within my own Sunday School class, I have an influence in the way a act, speak, and dress. News flash! You have influence, too. Use it wisely.
  • I set an example to the unbelievers. People that don't have Christ in their hearts aren't going to understand why I want to iron my skirt on Saturday night before church, or why I even wear a skirt at all. I mean, pants are way more practical and warmer when you're making your way to church in the midst of a winter wonderland! I don't mean to be rude, but if you don't have Jesus, you just don't understand. Trust me, you want to understand!! But back to my point, I can show unbelievers (through my actions, speech, and dress) that I am separate, different, and set apart from the world. That I have something special in my life: Jesus! Because I do want all people to come to the saving knowledge of Jesus Christ, as I have, I want to use my example to the fullest. So, while actions and speech alone are good tools to show the difference Jesus has made in you, why abandon the last tool? Why skimp out on dressing the part?
Separate. Different. Set apart. On purpose. With a purpose.

In conclusion...

I am not at all sitting here in my throne of self-righteousness saying everybody needs to wear heels and pearls to Sunday morning services. In fact, I don't even claim a Biblical conviction that skirts are the only thing God wants women to wear. But, I am a firm believer that modesty is a tool. Modesty is a way to be a salt, light, and candle to the rest of the world. A vital tool that women all over this world are forgetting exists.

And while denim skirts and polos are good for being modest at the dollar store on Tuesday mornings, between house cleaning, and teaching piano lessons, I do find Biblical evidence that church is a place of elevation. A place of sacredness, where the peculiar among us are raised up on platforms, displayed as examples to fellow church members, and unbelivers, alike.

Don't let me get too preachy on you, just think twice about what you're wearing come Sunday morning! Just to humor me? And have a good week!!






2 comments:

  1. I totally agree with you, Kimberly! I don't expect people who come to our church who are unsaved or unchurched to dress a certain way. I do, however, believe that we church members and Christians SHOULD have a standard when it comes to God's House! Thanks for your perspective!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks for the encouragement, Elizabeth!! :)

    ReplyDelete

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