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Modesty in Principle and Practice


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A review of the doctrines and principles that influence what is modest as well as an overview of the modesty standards in the For the Strength of Youth pamphlet.

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Modesty in Principle and Practice

  1. 1. Modesty in Principle and Practice A review of the doctrines and principles that influence what is modest as well as an overview of the modesty standards in the For the Strength of Youth pamphlet
  2. 2. 2 What is Modesty? Dress, Grooming, Language, and Behavior The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints defines modesty as so: “Modesty is an attitude of propriety and decency in dress, grooming, language, and behavior. If we are modest, we do not draw undue attention to ourselves. Instead, we seek to “glorify God in [our] body, and in [our] spirit” (1 Corinthians 6:20).” See Dress Grooming Language Behavior
  3. 3. 3 What is “propriety” in dress and behavior? Appropriate for the situation • Propriety is the “state of being proper or suitable : appropriateness.” • To be modest is to be proper and appropriate in dress, grooming, language, and all behavior. • What is appropriate in one situation, may not be appropriate in another situation. • For example, wearing a swim suit at a swimming pool is appropriate, but wearing a swim suit to school is not appropriate and would therefore not be modest. a X
  4. 4. 4 Other context factors influence what is modest • Contexts such as the country you live in, the year you live in, etc. • For example, we would consider it immodest if someone… • showed up at a Church meeting in Joseph Smith’s day wearing 21st century clothing because it would be a futuristic, extreme style • attended a modern Church meeting wearing a robe and sandals from New Testament times because it would be distracting
  5. 5. 5 Jesus is Our Example of Bringing Glory to God rather than Attention on Ourselves • Modesty means that we should not draw undue attention to ourselves, but rather, we should bring attention to God • This principle of bringing glory to God gets to the heart of modesty • In the council in Heaven, Satan came before God and said: “Behold, here am I, send me, I will be thy son, and I will redeem all mankind, that one soul shall not be lost, and surely I will do it; wherefore give me thine honor.” • But God’s Beloved Son Jesus Christ said: “Father, thy will be done, and the glory be thine forever.” (Moses 4:1-2) • Jesus was dedicated to bringing glory to God and he did that by honoring God’s will
  6. 6. 6 Your Body is a Temple, therefore Glorify God • Most youth in the Church have heard that the physical body is a temple because it houses the spirit of God • This relates to modesty because, taught Paul, like a temple we should use our body to glorify God • “Know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.” (1 Corinthians 6:19-20)
  7. 7. 7 Inward vs Outward • In a perfect world, the outward would always be an expression of the inward • But in this world, Jesus taught, “Beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.” (Matt 7:15) • Conversely, the Savior taught that there are people who may appear bad on the outside, but on the inside, they are disciples of Christ • The “scribes and Pharisees murmured against his disciples, saying, Why do ye eat and drink with publicans and sinners?” (Luke 5:30) • There are many people who are modest in dress and behavior, but inwardly still need to improve the way they glory and honor God • Conversely, there are many people who inwardly glorify God, but their dress and actions still needs some improvement to reflect that
  8. 8. 8 A Tale of Two Trees • A friend bought a home with two large, beautiful oak trees he thought would stand for many years • When a storm came through, though, one of the trees came crashing down • The friend discovered the fallen tree was infected with insects and rotting on the inside • While it looked strong outwardly, inwardly it was damaged and dying • If modesty standards are outward only, they will not help you withstand storms • If modesty is an expression of our inward glory to God, then we will be strong, inside and out, and be able to withstand the storms of life like the tree that stood firm.
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  10. 10. 10 For the Strength of Youth Standards • The Holy Spirit will teach you ALL things that are modest • The prophets have provided a basic list of modesty standards that will help us look and act appropriate, and become people inside and out that bring glory to God • “The standards in this booklet will help you with the important choices you are making now and will yet make in the future. We promise that as you keep the covenants you have made and these standards, you will be blessed. …It is our fervent prayer that you will remain steadfast and valiant throughout your lives and that you will trust in the Savior and His promises.”
  11. 11. 11 Appropriate Dress and Appearance • “Immodest clothing is any clothing that is tight, sheer, or revealing in any other manner. Young women should avoid short shorts and short skirts, shirts that do not cover the stomach, and clothing that does not cover the shoulders or is low-cut in the front or the back. Young men should also maintain modesty in their appearance. Young men and young women should be neat and clean and avoid being extreme or inappropriately casual in clothing, hairstyle, and behavior.” (FTSOY) • “Will ye still persist in the wearing of costly apparel and setting your hearts upon the vain things of the world, upon your riches?” (Alma 5:53)
  12. 12. 12 Appropriate Language • “How you communicate should reflect who you are as a son or daughter of God. Clean and intelligent language is evidence of a bright and wholesome mind. Good language that uplifts, encourages, and compliments others invites the Spirit to be with you. …Speak kindly and positively about others. Choose not to insult others or put them down, even in joking. Avoid gossip of any kind, and avoid speaking in anger. …Do not use profane, vulgar, or crude language or gestures, and do not tell jokes or stories about immoral actions.” (FTSOY) • “Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good.” (Ephesians 4:29)
  13. 13. 13 Appropriate Behavior: No Bullying • “To have good friends, be a good friend. Show genuine interest in others; smile and let them know you care about them. Treat everyone with kindness and respect, and refrain from judging and criticizing those around you. Do not participate in any form of bullying. Make a special effort to be a friend to those who are shy or lonely, have special needs, or do not feel included.” (FTSOY)
  14. 14. 14 Appropriate Behavior: Honesty and Integrity • “Closely associated with honesty is integrity. Integrity means thinking and doing what is right at all times, no matter what the consequences. When you have integrity, you are willing to live by your standards and beliefs even when no one is watching. Choose to live so that your thoughts and behavior are always in harmony with the gospel.” (FTSOY)
  15. 15. 15 Appropriate Behavior: Music • “Music has a profound effect on your mind, spirit, and behavior. Choose carefully the music you listen to. Pay attention to how you feel when you are listening. Some music can carry evil and destructive messages. Do not listen to music that encourages immorality or glorifies violence through its lyrics, beat, or intensity. Do not listen to music that uses vulgar or offensive language or promotes evil practices. Such music can dull your spiritual sensitivity.” (FTSOY)
  16. 16. 16 Appropriate Behavior: Dancing • “Dancing can be fun and can provide an opportunity to meet new people. However, it too can be misused. When dancing, avoid full body contact with your partner. Do not use positions or moves that are suggestive of sexual or violent behavior or are otherwise inappropriate. Attend only those dances where dress, grooming, lighting, lyrics, music, and entertainment contribute to a wholesome atmosphere where the Spirit may be present.” (FTSOY)
  17. 17. 17 Appropriate Behavior: Dating • “In cultures where dating is acceptable, it can help you learn and practice social skills, develop friendships, have wholesome fun, and eventually find an eternal companion. You should not date until you are at least 16 years old. When you begin dating, go with one or more additional couples. Avoid going on frequent dates with the same person. …Choose to date only those who have high moral standards and in whose company you can maintain your standards.” (FTSOY)
  18. 18. 18 Appropriate Behavior: Sexual Purity • “Do not have any sexual relations before marriage. …Never do anything that could lead to sexual transgression. Treat others with respect, not as objects used to satisfy lustful and selfish desires. Before marriage, do not participate in passionate kissing, lie on top of another person, or touch the private, sacred parts of another person’s body, with or without clothing. Do not do anything else that arouses sexual feelings. Do not arouse those emotions in your own body…Do not participate in any type of pornography. …Make a personal commitment to be sexually pure.” (FTSOY)
  19. 19. 19 In Conclusion • Be intentional in dress and grooming choices and try to convey reverence for God and ourselves in all our behavior. • “The Lord needs you to look like, sound like, act like, and dress like a true disciple of Jesus Christ” (President Russell M. Nelson, “Hope of Israel”, worldwide youth devotional, June 3, 2018) • As you do so, “you will be blessed with the companionship of the Holy Ghost, your faith and testimony will grow stronger, and you will enjoy increasing happiness.” (FTSOY)
  20. 20. 20 Kahoot Quiz • Below is a link to a Kahoot quiz I built about the standards from the For the Strength of Youth pamphlet that goes along with this lesson •