Every woman or girl has probably picked up a copy of Cosmopolitan (or Cosmo Girl for teens) at least once in her life. Although the magazine has great fashion editors, it’s hard to endure flipping through the pages or even looking at the covers of this and many other publications like it because of their sexual content. It pains me to even glance at magazine stands next to grocery store counters. Truth is, there is a psychology behind the way items are placed in stores. The items near the checkout are what people usually buy at the last minute such as gum or batteries, because they are small and often overlooked. Magazines, on the other hand, are there to be eye candy (and to entice purchase) while waiting in line. Everybody is in the business of taking something from you, whether it be your money, your attention, or your mental/spiritual well-being.
So, what is kosmios? It’s the Greek word mostly identified with the word modesty. Kosmios means “proper, decent, respectable, and modest.” This word was actually derived from the original Greek word kosmos, which is closely associated with the universe. This word refers to order, adornment, and decoration. I know at this point, you might be getting a little lexicon leary from all these derivations, but I do want to point out something fantastic that I drew from this! After contemplating all of these terms, the three magic words that popped into my head were divinity, design, and modesty.
We are all divinely created by design, mirroring the image of God, and clothed modestly to cover up our sins. Adam and Eve were only naked and unashamed before the Fall of Man, but because of mankind’s disobedience, God provided them with decent clothing. As Jim Hamon of Psychoheresy says, “Contrary to the popular illustrations of Adam and Eve with their fig leaves, God’s covering was not a loin skin for Adam and a fur bikini for Eve.” God fashioned their clothes to cover their entire body.
I’m not going to just say “as Christians, we should…”, because we are all like Adam and Eve, human beings meant to be covered. This should eliminate the perception of the boxed, legalistic mentality that Christians supposedly have. The reason we as human beings wear clothes is found in the history of the covering of our shame. Although obviously not all things that happened in history were wonderful, I do believe that everything happens for a reason—a purpose that we might not fully understand until it is revealed to us by our Creator.
I can think of many reasons why covering myself is beneficial, and those things relate to my wellness and the wellness of everyone around me. Dressing like most scantily clad models and celebrities in magazines, in my mind, really just serves one selfish purpose: to sell through sex.
The pressure to be a Cosmo Girl will keep knocking on your door like a thief coming to steal, kill, and destroy you. You can’t really respond to this using the “WWJD?” method, because Christ was male and this issue addresses females. What you can do is examine your heart to find why you want to dress a certain way. Do you want to look sexy and attract all kinds of men—even the ones who are married? Do you want to stand out from the crowd, compete with other women, and incite jealousy? It’s okay to want to stand out, be unique, and show art through fashionable clothes, but it’s never okay to flaunt your body and contribute to lust.
I am a lover of independent art and the way it is shown through clothes, music, films, etc. I like showing creativity through my clothes, but I do this with respect to kosmios, the way God wants women to dress.
The kosmios girl is creative, godly, wise, fashionable, and modest. She cares for all people. She is unselfish, pure, virtuous, and intelligent, satisfied in the knowledge that she’s beautifully and wonderfully made. She is independently unique and adorns herself with creative cover-up couture, a la Modest. Are you a kosmios girl?
Do you “Like” reading this blog? a la Modest is now on Facebook!