Q: I’ve always liked clothes and fashion and make-up, but in my church I kind of feel looked down on for those things, like it’s not Christian enough. Is it okay to like fashion if you’re a Christian?
Hi girls! Jessie here. To answer this great question, I’d like to introduce my friend, Gabrielle Aurora (who, coincidentally, you might recognize from here and here). She is a a Denver-slash-Seattle fashion blogger, a lover of gluten-free cookies, and a passionate pursuer of Jesus. I love her heart, her adorable style, and the way she melds her faith and affinity for fashion. That’s why I’ve asked her to weigh in on this question! Now, I turn it over to Gabrielle…
I’ve found it’s easier to love fashion as a college student. We’re all constantly busy or preoccupied, so our style is a more honest expression of who we are, or at least an honest expression of the day’s status (late and caffeinated, or excited and carefree!). But honestly, I haven’t always viewed fashion and style in light of the truths that I have come to know and hold on to.
In high school I struggled with my identity and finding my assurance in Christ alone. I placed my value on my clothes, money, and the relationships I had with people. It negatively affected the way I thought about myself and ultimately how I thought about the people around me. I let fear of others control me, but now I know that Jesus has restored my identity. He has made me new. John 15:1-4 says,
I am the true grapevine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch of mine that doesn’t produce fruit, and he prunes the branches that do bear fruit so they will produce even more. You have already been pruned and purified by the message I have given you. Remain in me, and I will remain in you. For a branch cannot produce fruit if it is severed from the vine, and you cannot be fruitful unless you remain in me.
He is making me new, replacing my insecurities with truths like Jeremiah 1:5:
I knew you before I formed you in your mother’s womb. Before you were born I set you apart and appointed you as my prophet to the nations.
God has set us apart. We’re not to be of the world, or to chase after the things this world holds, but that doesn’t mean we can’t be current in it. That’s is how I see fashion. God gave me this love I have of colors, patterns, and textures. I love structure in clothing. I love looking at what is trendy. I love helping young girls and women find their style. God gave me this gift, and I think it’s a reflection of His image in me. Look at the earth! He didn’t have to make it beautiful, but He did—simply because He loves color, patterns, and textures! Look at the trees, the mountains, the ocean, the purity of snow. I have come to the complete conclusion that He loves beautiful things. And that’s why I don’t think it’s wrong to love fashion. As long as we keep our hearts in the right place, piecing together outfits can be a reflection of God’s creativity in us.
It’s true: I want to be on top of all the new trends. I know some people would view that desire as materialism. But, if you could see my deepest heart, I view staying trendy and knowing the trends as an opportunity to relate to the current generation and hopefully spread the truths and promises of the gospel to one of the most secular industries. And I’m learning to keep my love of fashion in perspective, remembering that—even though I’m passionate about it—fashion isn’t designed to bring myself glory or recognition, but to point back to God. The fashion industry needs the love of Jesus, and I intend to bring it. I get so excited and passionate talking about and doing fashion. I also get so excited and passionate about talking about and sharing Jesus! He is my first love.
Every outlet of our self expression can come free-flowing from our unique intimacy with Jesus Christ. Every aspect of who we are—including our talents and desires—are connected to the things that God has called us to. I have a desire to be fashionable, I have a talent in designing and styling outfits, and because I am deep rooted in the person of Christ, I am able to express my love for fashion in a way that points back to the truths of the gospel. And so can you.
Now, my love, go rock your style, be unique, and be a world changer!