Is There a Certain Way to Dress For Church?

It’s Sunday morning and time to get dressed for church. 


As I entered adult life in the 60’s, my fashion attire for church was spike high heels, pantyhose, dressy dress to the knees, and perfectly coiffed teased hair. On Easter Sunday, I added a hat and gloves. 


Being from a strict denominational background, pants were taboo, but the fashion market introduced a new style in the 70’s - - pantsuits. I didn’t care what the preacher said, I donned a stylish pantsuit, and off to church I went.

And then it happened - - the mini skirt hit the fashion market! My pastor in the 80’s said, “I stopped preaching on women wearing pants to church when they started showing up without enough clothes on to clothe ajay bird.” 

During the 90’s, I was back to wearing longer dresses, so I shed my pantyhose. Praise the Lord!


Recently, as my fellow parishioners were coming into church, I critiqued the way they were dressed. 

·      Tattoo Queen - - Jesus on the crossand scriptures were painted all over her arms. (How irreverent!) 

·      Prancing to the seat in front of me was a young woman with purple hair and wearing hip- hugger pants. She bent over to put her purse down and glaring me in the face was her butt crack!  (Shameful!) 

·      The worship team entered the pulpit for rehearsal. Women, wearing skintight jeans, began swaying their hips in sync with the music. (Disgraceful!) 

·      Strolling down the aisle was the preacher wearing Khaki jeans with open-collar shirt. (I bet if he were invited to The White House, he’d wear his suit and tie.)

All of a sudden someone started whispering in my ear. I looked at the seat next to me, but no one was there. A bit shaken that I couldn’t see anyone, but could still hear a soft whisper, I finally realized it was God Himself. 

God:“Martha, do you remember why you didn’t accept Jesus as your Savior for so many years?”  

Me: “Yes, Lord; it was because the preacher was telling me I couldn’t wear makeup, couldn’t cut my hair, or wear pants. I wanted to be fashionable, so ‘getting saved’ didn’t appeal to me. That was for old ladies.”

God: “What finally convinced you I’m not into fashion?”

Me: “Well, it was the scripture that Pastor Bethany recited at the end of each message from James 4:8 - - Draw near to God, and He will draw near to you.

God:  “What was that scripture saying to you?”

Me:  “One day as I was meditating on it, I said to myself, ‘I’m just going to draw near to God, and let Him tell me what to wear, not somebody else.’  And You know, Lord, when Sunday came and Brother Bethany gave the invitation, I raised my hand and said, ‘I want to ask Jesus into my heart.’ In that moment, I could have cared less about my clothes; I just wanted a relationship with You.”

God: “That’s what I want for all the people you are criticizing for their fashion.”


And with that, the music began. Worshipping with God sitting beside me was awesome. I no longer noticed the worship team’s swaying hips. 

But, I have to admit the woman sitting in front of me showing her butt crack still bothered me. I turned to point her out to God, but He wasn’t there anymore.  

Apparently, He hadn’t noticed.

Personal Reflections


1.     Has your life been affected by “what is expected fashion attire” in the church? If so, how?


2.     Do you dress different for church than at the workplace?


3.     How has this affected your spiritual life in regards to fulfilling God’s will and plans for your life?


Goal Setting and Sharing

List 3 goals that you would like to accomplish at home, work, with family, etc. that will allow you to make good choices in fashion at church or in the workplace in order to do what God has called you to do.





We believe that as Ambassadors of Christ, it’s okay to show up well! We believe our identity and self-worth comes through Christ and as we embrace our unique personality and quirks He has given us, our fashion becomes an outward expression of who we are created to be. Plus, fashion is a whole lot of fun!


Gather Her: June 13th

  • Speaker, Heather Frierson

  • Fashion Partner Alma Boutique

  • Podcasts

    • June 11th, Hannah Breaux, How-to series

    • June 25th, Heather Frierson, How faith & fashion go together


Weekly Devotionals every Monday & Wednesday:

  • Modest is hotest

  • Nineteen & never

  • Is there a certain way to dress for church?

  • Ever been worn by a dress?

  • Does this fit me?