“Honey, is my good t-shirt clean?” was an inside joke. It was aimed at a young man who had a rather worn looking, but clean, t-shirt on a Wednesday night at church. I, of course, was wearing a tie. This joke stressed how disrespectful it was for him to dress down like that. Well, that’s what I thought at the time.
If you’re asking, “Who cares what this Andy fellow wears?” then you’ve probably never been taught that it was wrong, even sinful, to wear “less than your best” to church. I’ve heard things like:
- Women shouldn’t wear pants on Sunday morning. But it’s OK if they wear pants on Sunday evening or Wednesday evening.
- A preacher shouldn’t wear shorts and sandals in public.
- You have to wear a tie to sing in the choir.
I could go on and on with ridiculous rules.
That was about fifteen years ago. Now, here I am wearing my good t-shirt to church. Something has changed. We‘ve learned that God doesn’t really care so much how we dress, as long as we are decent. He cares more about our relationship with Him. Check out 1 Samuel 16:7:
- “But the LORD said to Samuel, “Do not look on his appearance or on the height of his stature, because I have rejected him. For the LORD sees not as man sees: man looks on the outward appearance, but the LORD looks on the heart.”
In Matthew 23:27, Jesus says:
- “Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you are like whitewashed tombs, which outwardly appear beautiful, but within are full of dead people’s bones and all uncleanness.”
Now, if anyone shows up at Canvas wearing a suit and tie, nobody make any jokes!! (I might dress up this week myself.)
- Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O LORD, my rock and my redeemer. Psalm 19:14.