How many times have you stared at your image in the mirror, with a pile of clothes from your closet nearby as you try on the seventh or eighth outfit choice (so far) for your day? Please don’t tell me it’s just me.
Some days we just want to make an extra effort to look put together. We may feel that it’s important to look or dress a certain way because of where we will be that day, or who we will be spending time with. In our culture, even wearing certain brands or having a purse with specific initials on it can be seen as a status symbol.
Clothing we wear or see others wear often helps us identify something. If you see a person in scrubs, you might assume they are in the medical profession. If you’ve ever attended a Mary Kay event (like I did last night), you will soon notice that many of the consultants are dressed in a very smart blazer that identifies the level of leadership they have attained in the organization. A logo on a T-shirt while you are out shopping may help you identify that another shopper in the grocery store attends your church. In Jesus’ time, if one person made an agreement with another person, they would often trade clothing as a way to identify themselves with each other. This was a way to show they stood together in a decision or commitment.
While I do believe that looking nice can positively affect your mood and confidence, I know that there’s something more important to wear than pretty clothing.
Colossians 3:9-14 (MSG translation) says, “You’re done with that old life. It’s like a filthy set of ill-fitting clothes you’ve stripped off and put in the fire. Now you’re dressed in a new wardrobe. Every item of your new way of life is custom-made by the Creator, with his label on it. All the old fashions are now obsolete…From now on everyone is defined by Christ, everyone is included in Christ. So, chosen by God for this new life of love, dress in the wardrobe God picked out for you: compassion, kindness, humility, quiet strength, discipline. Be even-tempered, content with second place, quick to forgive an offense. Forgive as completely as the Master forgave you. And regardless of what else you put on, wear love. It’s your basic, all-purpose garment. Never be without it.”
Next time you are standing in front of the mirror, trying to decide what to wear, remember to dress your insides, too. Put on the compassion, kindness, humility, quiet strength, forgiveness, discipline and love that comes from God. Not only does it make you more beautiful, it helps others identify you with the most amazing designer, Jesus Christ. And once we are dressed like Him, He is able to use us to show His beauty, His kindness & His love to others.
And that’s being a smart dresser.