robes of honor

jael is currently (and more likely, indeterminately) fascinated with weddings.  we use our winco check-out time accordingly.  but i think someday i may have to break down and get her a subscription.  anyways, as we flip through the pages we play a game where we look for dresses with sleeves.  there aren’t any.  seriously.  which got me thinking, what is up with that?  i read somewhere that the strapless wedding gown prevails by 90%.  that is a huge shift in society’s vision of what it means to be a bride.  i did a quick google image search of “vintage wedding photos” and was left with an overwhelming impression of innocence, grace, elegance, modesty, and the high estimation virginity.  in the following search i simply knocked off the word “vintage” and was left with a parade of anorexic street walkers pedaling some form of “haute,” in the remains of what could have been a wedding dress.  there wasn’t anything demure about it.  a totally different vision.

of course, norms change over time.  the question is simply if you’re all set to hop on the pony with them.  because as far as i can tell, they’re heading somewhere ugly.  we often try to coax girls into the “modest is hottest” dress by telling them what they shouldn’t wear and what they can’t have.  but i think that is the wrong tact.  honey, you don’t want what they got.  you’re after something better.

and if you’re not after something better, don’t sweat it.  but for heaven’s sake, if you made the commitment to present yourself as a spotless bride, don’t throw it away it at the altar when you show up in the other team’s half of a uniform.  why should we be coveting the prostitute?  why would we want to throw away our heritage for hers?  do you really think a virgin bride is of no value, or of no consequence?  is she not someone who has been esteemed, written about, dreamed of, and fought for all through history?  isn’t she a picture of christ’s own church?  simply ask yourself, would the bride of christ wear that?  and if she did, would it cheapen her, or lend her honor?  more specifically, what does honor look like?

“honor” being the key word.  know your value.  know that virginity is a priceless thing.  it is hard to find and that millions have sold it for a bowl of pottage.  but this is your birthright, this is your day.  a wedding dress is a robe of honor and a woman of noble character is hard to find.  be glad to be that woman.  show it off.

and if indeed, you are so lucky to be able to walk down the aisle as a pure bride adorned for your husband, glory in it.  that’s what a wedding is for.  go all out.  in a world where virginity is scorned and diminished, on your wedding day you have the chance to stand before hundreds and defend it.  a wedding just isn’t any girl’s right to a party because she finally decides to settle for the guy she’s been sleeping with the last two years.  it’s a celebration of virginity and it’s covenant bestowal.  the dress itself isn’t just cute and expensive, it’s a vestment of glory.  in fact, there isn’t one that is more so.  if all you can see in it, however, is something that sucks you in in the right places and makes you look f-i-n-e, then maybe you haven’t been paying attention.  who cares what we wear anyways?  well, you can easily gauge how important something when you look at how heavily satan has been smacking it around.  and when he has successfully convinced 90% of all blushing brides that the look they’re going for is “fornicator with a side of sultry“…well then i’d say you have yourself a battlefield.  so man up and don the headgear.

break out the veil and the long sleeves that no one has seen since the 1950’s.  and then put on some gloves (just to make sure).  a bride should be well wrapped.  there shouldn’t have been any lifting of the scotch tape around any of the edges.  and when you walk down the aisle, every male in the room shouldn’t be getting a foretaste of what your husband will that night.  instead, they should be respecting the man who gets to unwrap that package.  she belongs to no one else.  and after the wedding, when you go outside for your classy “jump up in the sky” photo, no one should be afraid you’re going to loose a boob.  in this instance, any hatch you can batten down adds to your dignity.  i mean, look at these dresses.  you can’t see a collar bone, much less the better half of fred and ethel.  desire the kind of dress that not many could wear without profound hypocrisy and presumption.  it’s  a hard won right.  not only does it add to your dignity, but it also adds to the dignity of all those who helped and preserved you along the way.  the right dress speaks volumes of virginity, tradition, god, parents, and churches, while the wrong dress….  well it says, “don’t i look cute?  i bet you haven’t seen this much of my back since…well, ever.”  yay.

and i know, doesn’t the poor girl look like she’s sitting there saying, “ugh, this outfit is way too hot.”?  kind of how the queen of england is frequently caught saying, “man, these cullinan diamonds are freakin’ heavy.  what i wouldn’t do for some cubic zirconium right about now.”  um, no.  when you get married put on some clothes.  not only that, be proud to do so.  i can totally understand why the less fastidious – those being married by some vanilla flavored “officient” in some insipid, vaguely spiritual ceremony, after 8 years of co-habitation – feel free to wear whatever they want.  (and whatever you do, don’t try and tell them otherwise.)  but christian girls need to savvy up.  end of story.  immodest wedding couture and it’s attendants, b1 and b2, are not proper attire for religious ceremonies in a house of worship.  just ask emily post.  especially religious ceremonies where the attendee is being paraded down the aisle as a pure virgin, the symbol of christ’s church, and a woman who’s worth is above rubies.  of which, the modern wedding dress is only a parody.  you know, kind of like those smokin’ hot nun get-ups they sell around halloween?  not exactly the same as the real deal.  yet so many girls show up for their big day in the equivalent of their “nun-kini,” all with a straight face.  you’re kidding me, right?

for the record, your wedding is not about how hot you are.  it’s about your god, your people, your husband, and your past and continued faithfulness.  most people are hitting about one out of the four.  and that not for long.  so have some pride.  up the ante and show them how it’s done.

you earned it.  this is your robe of honor.  the other, it’s just a dress.

3 Responses to “robes of honor”

  1. 1 Judy June 23, 2012 at 9:03 pm

    This deserves a Pulitzer!

  2. 2 chip June 25, 2012 at 9:21 pm

    Huh. Good thoughts. — Chip

  3. 3 Lisa-Marie August 7, 2013 at 4:07 am

    My wedding dress was indeed my “robe of righteousness”, symbolising my garment of salvation. I agree with everything you’ve said: well written!

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