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How Should You Dress for Worship Services?

WIP

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#61
See my OP for my thoughts here. I guess my reasoning back in the day wasn't so original after all. :lol

So, I have to shower before the worship service? Legalism!! (Just kidding)
To answer the two questions you posted.

1. How do you dress for worship? I like to put on dress slacks with what I hope is a nice dress shirt.

2. How do you believe you should dress for worship? I believe one should dress nicely given what they fits within their means. Whether we like it or not, how we might look to others that may be visiting in both dress and action, particularly potential non-believers, says something about our character. We not only attend worship services for worship, although it should be top priority on the agenda, we also attend for fellowship so we should dress presentable.
 
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#62
I haven't gone to church in a while, but I'm planning on going soon-ish. my plan is to dress reasonably well...nothing too over the top, but probably nicer than day-to-day clothes. to each their own, of course. at this point, I'm thinking that I'm blessed to have nice clothes to wear to church, and blessed to be free to go to church, so....yeah. not exactly puttin' on the ritz, but i'll get cleaned up and dress nicely.

of course...I think it depends on the church, too. some I think set the bar a bit too low, for no apparent reason except to avoid 'legalism,' or...something.
 
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#63
This topic has been discussed countless times, but I was in my morning devotionals, and the topic was brought up. Something was said that caused me to realize how differently I answer this question today than I did for decades until only a few years ago.

The reasoning I gave when the question was asked was a rhetorical question back. How would you dress if you were invited to meet the President? Doesn't your God deserve at least that much honor? I've come to the point where I wear jeans or shorts and a comfortable shirt. When I pose my rhetorical question to myself today, I believe I have a good response.

Mike, don't confuse worldy customs and norms with God's desire. The world invented the neck tie. The world says what appropriate dress is in any given situation. God wants your heart in the pews; not a suit and tie. Cloak yourself in humbleness and bring a heart of gratefulness.

Romans 12:2 "And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God."

This isn't to say people shouldn't dress up if that is how they are Led or if it helps them get in a spiritual place to meet the Lord, but it should never be a requirement (stated or implied) of the church they attend.

So two questions:
1. How do you dress for worship?
2. How do you believe you should dress for worship?
So I can see of the above, you might say, I would have agreed with Mike, having washed myself first.
But I would not dress so that a person can see my body figure, but rather: in modest apparel, with shame facedness and sobriety; not with broided hair, or gold, or pearls, or costly array;
1 Timothy 2:8-10, As God looks on the heart, http://biblehub.com/1_samuel/16-7.htm

1 Peter 3:3 Whose adorning let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel;

http://biblehub.com/1_peter/3-3.htm
 
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Mike

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#64
We not only attend worship services for worship, although it should be top priority on the agenda, we also attend for fellowship so we should dress presentable.
I have tremendous respect for your opinion here, as usual, but again I defer to my OP. I believe these are society customs. I see them as being driven by our culture. Further, I think we cannot help but let our congregation we regularly worship with shape our opinions of appropriate dress.

Like you now, I was a member of the LCMS for much of my life, and I felt it important to dress like you do for the same reasons you do. This opinion was shared by most members of our church. When we migrated to the non-denominational church we attend now, I have to admit I was a little put off by the casual attire. Even on Christmas and Easter, they dressed down. I'll always remember our first Christmas service we attended, I showed up in a coat & tie, because everyone knows that's what you do. Yup. I was the only one. I felt self conscious that I looked pretentious.

As you can tell, my opinion has morphed. I would say it's because of the emphasis our pastor places on focusing inward rather than outward, but in truth it probably has at least as much to do with our congregational norm.
 
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#65
Well, I think one should look decent and clean.
I realize that some people don't look decent and we'r not suppose to judge a person by what they look like, but.....when a person keeps coming back every sunday looking dirty and not decent, maybe the church should help this person.
I know about one case that a woman looked pretty bad every sunday, so the pastor's wife took her to a store and bought her a few nice dresses and took her into a beauty parlour to get cleaned up. As far as I know she was very happy and kept coming to church in her new dresses. Sometimes we don't know in what kind of situations people are.... just my two cents.
 

Mike

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#66
maybe the church should help this person
That's a good point, but I wouldn't want to be the guy who asked and offended them. The better thing would be to risk that on the chance they really do need help, but I guess I'm not that risky a person.
 
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#67
Tried to post a photo. I guess it does not work.
I figured I could load from my Iphoto, but that's a no go?
 

kiwidan

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#68
Well, I think one should look decent and clean.
I realize that some people don't look decent and we'r not suppose to judge a person by what they look like, but.....when a person keeps coming back every sunday looking dirty and not decent, maybe the church should help this person.
I know about one case that a woman looked pretty bad every sunday, so the pastor's wife took her to a store and bought her a few nice dresses and took her into a beauty parlour to get cleaned up. As far as I know she was very happy and kept coming to church in her new dresses. Sometimes we don't know in what kind of situations people are.... just my two cents.
Meh, they wore sandles and sheets of cloth to church 2000 years ago.

I don't care about appearance, I would go to church unshaven because I was too lazy to shave. Every hair on my face is still numbered.
 
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#69
This topic has been discussed countless times, but I was in my morning devotionals, and the topic was brought up. Something was said that caused me to realize how differently I answer this question today than I did for decades until only a few years ago.

The reasoning I gave when the question was asked was a rhetorical question back. How would you dress if you were invited to meet the President? Doesn't your God deserve at least that much honor? I've come to the point where I wear jeans or shorts and a comfortable shirt. When I pose my rhetorical question to myself today, I believe I have a good response.

Mike, don't confuse worldy customs and norms with God's desire. The world invented the neck tie. The world says what appropriate dress is in any given situation. God wants your heart in the pews; not a suit and tie. Cloak yourself in humbleness and bring a heart of gratefulness.

Romans 12:2 "And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God."

This isn't to say people shouldn't dress up if that is how they are Led or if it helps them get in a spiritual place to meet the Lord, but it should never be a requirement (stated or implied) of the church they attend.

So two questions:
1. How do you dress for worship?
2. How do you believe you should dress for worship?
Those are good questions. You sound just like my dad, lol. He said the exact same thing to me about how would you dress if the President was (going to stop by?). He said sometimes he uses Frank Sinatra for that example. (He's a huge Sinatra fan, lol).

Anywho, I agree with you. God wants our hearts in the pew not our fancy schmancy clothes. I heard one man's testimony of meeting Jesus in Church. Jesus was disguised as a homeless man, scruffy looking, sat all the way in the back...(That was a Brandon McClendon testimony on youtube). But I digress.

1. Slacks, shirt and nice shoes. Very rarely a tie. Never a jacket. Respect. Respectful. If you wopuldn't wear jeans for the President, how much more so God?.
2. I believe you should dress as nice as you have (within reason, no clubbing clothes). At least clean clothes (if not homeless and in dire straights)...but don't let it stop you from going to church because you didn't get your clothes back from the cleaners or wotnot.
 

StoveBolts

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#71
Since when?? You live in a fantasy world. Great benefits and a place where jeans and business are mentioned in the same sentence. I said it before, and I'll say it again in all caps. DON'T EVER LEAVE THE JOB!
I seriously need to give a shout out to how great of a God we serve.
I grew up with a troubled childhood, which extended into my teens and reflected itself in my first marriage where we both lost the kids and I was motivated to change careers from truck driving to sheet metal.
In short, I don't even have a high school diploma, but I do have my GED. I have a college diploma in client server programming i earned at night school when i moved to michigan as a roofer.
I have had 4 promotions in the past 3 years, all with substantial pay raises.

I work hard, but my focus has always been on allowing God to put me exactly where he needed me to spread the gospel and make a difference in the lives of others. For me, that has been my focus and God has continued to bless our family in so many ways.
I give all thanks to God, and a shout out to my loving wife who treats me so well.

God is good, no matter the circumstance, and even at times when we can't see it, or we forget.
 

WIP

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#73
I have tremendous respect for your opinion here, as usual, but again I defer to my OP. I believe these are society customs. I see them as being driven by our culture. Further, I think we cannot help but let our congregation we regularly worship with shape our opinions of appropriate dress.

Like you now, I was a member of the LCMS for much of my life, and I felt it important to dress like you do for the same reasons you do. This opinion was shared by most members of our church. When we migrated to the non-denominational church we attend now, I have to admit I was a little put off by the casual attire. Even on Christmas and Easter, they dressed down. I'll always remember our first Christmas service we attended, I showed up in a coat & tie, because everyone knows that's what you do. Yup. I was the only one. I felt self conscious that I looked pretentious.

As you can tell, my opinion has morphed. I would say it's because of the emphasis our pastor places on focusing inward rather than outward, but in truth it probably has at least as much to do with our congregational norm.
The way we present ourselves can obviously be viewed differently by different people. Our church is currently not associated with any particular denomination but our history is ALC and we tend to still follow those traditions. In fact, when we left the ELCA we re-instituted the original ALC constitution with a couple minor changes to fit better with our small congregation. Just a little history for clarity.

For me I guess my Catholic upbringing shows through in how I feel I should present myself when I attend a worship service. When I walk through the front door I believe I am walking into the presence of our Lord, even though I know He is always present wherever I go. He did say where two or three are gathered in His name, He is there with them and I believe the gathering that we share in our fellowship is far more than just a bunch of friends getting together to chit-chat, get caught up, and renew friendships. We gather there for the primary purpose of worshiping our Lord and Savior, Jesus, and the fellowship we enjoy is a lesser part, although still very important and recommended by Scripture.

We ring our church bell to signify the opening of the service and although many don't do this, for me, when that bell rings its a call to attention. From that moment until the bell rings again signifying the end of the service my thoughts are directed toward the service, the liturgy, and Jesus as much as I can. I try to really think about the words of the liturgy and what they truly say to us and what they mean.

When I left the church in my younger years a major part of that decision was the lack of "feeling" I got from the service. It wasn't fulfilling because I was just going through the motions, speaking words that had no meaning, and praying memorized prayers that were nothing more than words and I don't ever want to allow myself to fall victim to that again. Dressing up for the service is one way that I use to help me keep that focus on the importance of the meeting.

Ever notice how our attitude tends to take on a different form when we are dressed up vs wearing our grubbies? I know mine does. When I dress up I feel different...more formal and serious. I don't feel casual and I don't want my time in worship to be casual because I don't believe our relationship with God is something to be taken casually.
 

WIP

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#74
Well, I think one should look decent and clean.
I realize that some people don't look decent and we'r not suppose to judge a person by what they look like, but.....when a person keeps coming back every sunday looking dirty and not decent, maybe the church should help this person.
I know about one case that a woman looked pretty bad every sunday, so the pastor's wife took her to a store and bought her a few nice dresses and took her into a beauty parlour to get cleaned up. As far as I know she was very happy and kept coming to church in her new dresses. Sometimes we don't know in what kind of situations people are.... just my two cents.
I'm not picking on the ladies here, just using the example but personally I would rather see a person arrive in rags if that is the best they have than to see some of the ladies that come dressed to kill if you know what I mean. To me that seems a bit more casual than is appropriate for a worship setting and is distracting from the service but maybe that's just me.
 
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#76
Amen Brother!

When I left the church in my younger years a major part of that decision was the lack of "feeling" I got from the service. It wasn't fulfilling because I was just going through the motions, speaking words that had no meaning, and praying memorized prayers that were nothing more than words and I don't ever want to allow myself to fall victim to that again. Dressing up for the service is one way that I use to help me keep that focus on the importance of the meeting.

Ever notice how our attitude tends to take on a different form when we are dressed up vs wearing our grubbies? I know mine does. When I dress up I feel different...more formal and serious. I don't feel casual and I don't want my time in worship to be casual because I don't believe our relationship with God is something to be taken casually.
Yes, me too. I have realized over time...(had it revealed to me over time?) that...feelings, as well as speaking word (with little meaning), are nothing more than words and...sometimes less is more. More heart, less words. And, the Lord doesn't work through feelings. In fact, I believe that He prefers to work through us...deadpan. Pure faith and belief and no feelings.
 
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#77
I'm not picking on the ladies here, just using the example but personally I would rather see a person arrive in rags if that is the best they have than to see some of the ladies that come dressed to kill if you know what I mean. To me that seems a bit more casual than is appropriate for a worship setting and is distracting from the service but maybe that's just me.
I heard a guys testimony once...Someone had invited a homeless guy to their church. And he came. But as he walked up the isle...people sort of shunned the guy from sitting next to them, so he...sat on the floor in the isle. The church took on an awkward silence...until one of the ushers came over and sat down right next to the guy in the isle. Then it was ok.

Another testimony I watched on Youtube...(Lol!), was Bradford McClendons, and he met Jesus in church one time, sitting in the back row...disguised as a homeless man. He said he was drawn to the man who was looking down...and when he walked up next to Him...He lifted his head and winked at him!...and he got this big rush of the presence of Jesus! I believe the guy. That sounds like something that Jesus would do.

We have to remember, that the Lord doesn't look at the outside of man, but the heart. If we are to be emulating Jesus, then we should too.
 

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