Friday, March 6, 2009

Cultivating Modesty From Within

I saw a treasure chest, beautiful and intricately carved with rich gold and many jewels on it.  As beautiful as the outside was the inside was filled with the most precious and rare jewels of all types. This was a gift for a groom at the wedding, more costly than all else and more to be desired than any other gift. I saw two brides-one would carelessly open her treasure chest and grab a handful of gems and give them to whomever she fancied over the years while the other bride took such care of her chest and kept all the contents safe. The year came for the brides to give their grooms the chest but the one who had given so many of her treasures away, I noticed, the beauty of the chest had diminished so that it was ordinary while the bride who had cared and protected hers presented her groom with a beautiful chest. When the first groom looked at the chest, he was puzzled because it was just an ordinary box and as he opened it there was nothing inside while the second groom took his in awe and gazed at his wife. Slowly he opened it to find that all that were originally placed were still there and he was touched beyond words.

You see the treasure chest represents the bride-all the purity that she is born with; her hugs, love, loving looks, kisses and touch were the jewels on the inside that she had kept safe for her husband. 

My Mom shared that story with us again and again as my sister and I were growing up.  It was a story that impacted me, taught me, molded me.  I remember being around 8 or 9 and seeing a girl that lived in our neighborhood that was in 7th grade kissing a boy and running to my Mom and yelling, "Mom, Mom, Tara is giving away her jewels."  

My Mom's story gave me such a vivid picture of what we possessed and the importance of it, so much more than any list of what to do and what not to do ever could have.  She romanced our hearts and gave us a picture of the beauty that we possessed and through that we were able to grab hold of our own purity.  We valued it...  we treasured it... and then a natural modesty flowed forth.

I'm just beginning the journey of raising two little girls and yet already I find myself so aware of the need to cultivate modesty and purity in their lives.  Yet, it's not just the importance of being modest, I want to cultivate their modesty from within.   My heart's desire is to see them grab hold of what they possess, to understand the importance of cultivating a quiet spirit...  

I want them to understand the art of modesty, the beauty of purity and the amazing journey of walking as the king's daughter.

All glorious is the princess within.
Psalm 45:13

So, today we are teaching them the importance of wearing modest clothes, watching what we do with our legs when we are in a skirt or dress, talking of the importance of modesty and purity in our lives, but I'm not stopping there...


Book and stories have a way of teaching us... taking us down a path... romancing our hearts...
Faith and I have fallen in love with these books and continue to read them again and again.

God's wisdom for little girls is so precious.   It follows Proverbs and teaches little girls how they should act.  While it does not focus on modesty and purity, it does focus on issues of the heart.

We've fallen in love with the Princess Kiss.
It is the story of a princess and her journey to getting married, saving her kiss for her husband...  it reminds me of my Mom's story in many ways.  Faith loves the pictures, loves looking at the princess and all of the silly guys.   When we are done reading, we always talk about our treasure chests.

Modesty is not only an ornament, but also a guard to virtue.
Joseph Addison

On a side note, Joy over at SAHMissionary, is hosting a modest fashion week and I know it will be wonderful.


I'd love to hear if you have found some good resources.  


  1. What a great post- Loved the links and am off to see more (especially the one on girls! Kari n=has two and kijsa has one)!
    kari & kijsa

  2. This is wonderful! My girls are only 3 right now, but in this day and age, it's never too early to start teaching our daughters these timeless truths.

    We talk about the Fruit of the Spirit almost every day in our home. We like Elizabeth George's picture books for both girls and boys on the Fruit of the Spirit. I believe they're called A Little Girl after God's Own Heart and A Little Boy after...

    When my girls are naughty, they're able to identify the "fruit" they lack. After they're disciplined, they usually bring me the book turned to the page of that fruit. I love that they "get it."

  3. hi Carrie,

    Thanks for sharing these resources. I really needed this post to get me thinking about this topic. I think of my daughters as so young - at 3 and 5 - that I don't think about it much. But as Jenny said above, it is never too early to start teaching...

    By the way, I haven't been able to access my email for about 2 weeks. You will get an email reply from me someday when it gets fixed. :)


  4. I love this! I have two boys and my youngest is a girl. Although they are all under 4 right now, I want to teach them at an early age to keep their bodies as temples. Thank you for this piece and visual example that will help me in my teaching.

  5. Thanks for sharing Carrie! Oh, how important to start teaching modesty when our girls are young. We have God's Wisdom for Little Girls and greatly enjoy it! The Princess Kiss Looks so precious, I will have to put it on my wish list.

  6. Hey Carrie,
    I love this post (and I love the recipe above for the granola bars...yummy! can't wait to try them).
    Thanks for sharing on this topic. I'm wondering if you would be kind enough to link up this post tomorrow over at my place? I want people to read it!

  7. What a wonderful post! Thank you for the beautiful story about the jewels I can't wait to share that with my daughter...and I am going to look into getting those books! Thanks!

    Blessings, Amy :)

  8. Carrie,

    This is my first visit to your lovely blog via Joy's and I'm absolutely a fan now! My daughter would adore those books, and we're going to be near a huge Christian bookstore this weekend, so I'd love to find "The Princess's Kiss" there. :o) What a wonderful story passed along to you by your mother and now by you to your own girls. Great post, mama!

  9. Carrie-
    I found your site from the link on Joy's SAHM blog. I love this! I will be holding on to that story in case I ever have daughters. :)

  10. What beautiful words on purity. Thanks you for sharing this.

  11. Thank you Carrie! This is a beautiful post...which reflects it's beautiful author! :)

  12. Thanks for stopping by my blog! :-) I really enjoyed reading some of your back posts...blessings! :-)

  13. I loved the story. I've been struggling with this issue of young girls giving so much of themselves away before their wedding day. I'm not talking about sex, but as you mentioned, the hugs, the kisses, etc. It bothers me and I want to ask the parents: "Don't you care? Don't you see what's happening? It's your responsiblity to protect your daughters and you're not doing it." Naturally I haven't said anything so blunt but I do wish for an opportunity to share that there is an alternative.

    Your Mother was a very wise woman. I'm sure you're going to do a great job with your own girls!

    Blessings, Jules

  14. The Princess and the Kiss is a great book!!