My Barbarian Way

Our Sunday School class is reading through/discussing The Barbarian Way by Erwin McManus. We have not read the book but are allowed to add in our input anyway. Yesterday was the first class. I was resplendent in a brown dress, tan apron, white cap and my tan shawl. Talk about the pink elephant in the room! 😉

The teacher asked us if there were “barbarian stands” we made in the past, occasions where we stood against the world as a matter of faith conviction. A couple others ventured some answers before I thought I’d say something to explain my blatant Barbarianism:

I don’t look like a barbarian (nervous chuckles from the crowd) but as you all can see, I am making a rather bold statement with my clothing. My stand is against the world’s message to women that we should be obsessed with makeup, hair styles, and fashion and standing for modesty and propriety in dress. I know many people may assume some things about me because of my dress that are not be true, that I am not educated or work outside of the home or my husband makes me do this. I was not raised to dress this way; I simply obey Jesus in what I do. If he tells me to lay it down, I will.

On the upside of this obedience is that I have had a 100 fold opportunity to share about my faith with the curious. Whatever God asks us to do has a witness component to it. Wearing a cap, dress and no makeup might not seem like the most “practical” thing to do but I have seen God use it to His glory and that is enough reason.

The teacher was rather positive in an immediate response and asked questions of me afterwards. Our pastor then began a new preaching series on being strangers in the world…hmmm. He posed the questions of how people can tell we are citizens of another kingdom by the way we speak or act. He did make the firm point that it was not by how we dress, looking straight at me as he spoke. *Wince* Dressing is an action, right??


3 Responses to “My Barbarian Way”

  1. 1 Mrs. Brigham January 9, 2008 at 1:01 pm

    What silliness. Dressing sure is an action, and not only that, but I know from personal experience just how much changing one’s dress can help change one’s behavior and bring one closer to God. When God placed “changing my wardrobe” convictions on my heart, the changes that result in my attitude- and from there my marriage and life in general- were very positive and important changes that I needed to make to be of better service to my Creator.

  2. 2 cbrunette January 9, 2008 at 3:33 pm

    To get theological, this instance points out Antinomianism or dividing what one does from what one believes. Or, saying that a certain behavior does not affect one’s spiritual state negatively (unless there is a positive benefit, then go for it.) Thank you for chiming in, Mrs. Brigham!


  3. 3 MrsGaylynn January 13, 2008 at 4:17 pm

    Anna, I’m a little cloudy on the theology behind this. I’ll have to do some studying. (not thinking real clearly because I’ve been sick) From my own experience I think dressing modestly and/or wearing dresses or skirts humbles us and it is a witness to others. We certainly couldn’t go around witnessing while dressing the way the world dresses could we? But I have to admit I get positive reactions as well as um, let’s say stand-offish reactions to my dresses and skirts. While I blend in with some, I am opposite from others. And I can also say I get/got the same reaction from both parties when I wore pants. The ladies that I blend with while wearing my skirts are standoffish/nearly shunning when I have worn pants. While the pants-wearing ladies are more friendly when I wear pants-and shunning when I wear skirts. So I guess what I’m saying is that how we dress does affect how people see/read us, regardless, good or bad. So I guess we have to choose individually and how God lays it our our hearts, not just what is popular because if we are around a lot of different types of people we would please some and displease others. I hope I’m saying this right. If you don’t mind I may continue this topic on my own blog. I’ve been doing some soul searching and trying to figure it all out lately and your post has given me some inspiration to do so. Thanks for the nice article-post. It’s something to think about and not have a pat answer about.

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"I can't say I don't believe in your God, but I don't believe He meant the world to be as it is." ~Nicholas Higgins. North and South.

"I wanted you to see what real courage is, instead of getting the idea that courage is a man with a gun in his hand. It's when you know you are licked before you begin but you begin anyway and you see it through no matter what." No idea where that last quote came from, but I like it!

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