“You can totally look nice in your skirts and dresses without looking “frumpy” or “grandma-ish”, while still being simple, modest and even mindful of your health with the right kind of shoes! “
I pray you are doing well! I recently had to do a little shoe shopping and I felt impressed to do this blog post because the following thoughts starting coming back to my mind. (Note: this post is being reposted some years after the original post! ;))
As I was growing closer to the Lord a couple of years ago, my dress changed because my heart had changed. When the light of Christ comes in our hearts and we come to know the beauty of His holiness, we can’t stay exactly the same as before. He causes us to be “born again” new creatures – our thoughts, likes, actions, etc. change! But it didn’t stop with skinny jeans and lower cut tops. I realized that even the shoes I wore would tell if I was seeking to bring glory and honor to God by being simple, neat and serving their purpose, or if I was seeking to glorify myself and to foster my pride by being flashy and drawing attention to me, my feet and my legs. With those convictions I ended up getting rid of many pairs of shoes, leading to this recent shoe shopping because…*drumroll*… I no longer wear high heels!
Why? Well to sum it up, to glorify God because I love Him! But more specifically there were two main reasons that I’ll explain below. I will also share with you types of shoes that go nicely with long skirts and dresses so continue to read on for those ideas! I pray that they will be a blessing 🙂 (Please note that I am not judging or condemning those who do or believe differently. I am just sharing the conviction the Lord placed on my heart as I have been praying, studying and striving to let Him work on my heart and change me so that I can be a true modest and virtuous daughter of God, within and without, to rightly represent His character in this dying world! :-))
Why I Stopped Wearing Heels
#1) The influence of the outward appearance for self vs. for God.
The additional height and instep of heels cause women to have to walk a certain way that actually draws attention to them. Do you know what I mean? They cause women to have to sway their hips a little more because they are taking either quick, forceful and short strides, or long strides to trying to maintain their balance — otherwise they look awkward if they don’t know how to “walk in them right”. Think about how the fashion models have to walk in their heels — long strides, or short and forceful ones all along with swinging hips. There are so many websites and videos you can watch online now to teach you how to walk in heels. One sight even said this ” Catwalk models will often cross one foot slightly in front of the other to give their hips a little more sway, but it’ll take some extra practice to master this.” And think about it – should we have to spend time training to walk in shoes (when we aren’t babies)? Let us rather train to walk in Christ’s shoes 🙂 Many will advise young women to spend a day wearing there new high heels in the house to get used to walking in them, while so many aren’t even privileged to own one pair of practical, comfortable, everyday shoes at all! So much of God’s precious time is wasted to glorify self. Will we be good stewards of the Lord’s time and money?
When taking a look from the outside, I noticed that my fellow sisters, when wearing high heels, had to walk in a way, whether they realized it or not, that was actually seductive to our brothers in Christ (swinging hips and rear and magnified attention to the legs). Now they were simply walking in such a way so that they could keep their balance, but many didn’t even realize, just like when I wore them, how it could cause their brothers to stumble.
High heels, especially now, are made to draw so much attention. I mean, I know from experience! When I had a nice pair of high heels, I loved how my legs looked with them on, and my friends would always compliment my shoes! “Those are soooo cute!” Some dared to even say “Those are so ‘sexy’ ” (insinuating just what type of mindset wearing or seeing someone in high heels usually stimulates). “How do you walk in those?!” “Ooo, where did you get those from?!”. These comments still echo in memory’s hall.
But shouldn’t my character and dress have been drawing my friends to the beautiful simplicity and humility of Christ and not to praise some high,unnatural, and uncomfortable, while yet somehow ‘cute’ contraption on my foot? (LOL, I had to say it – heels are like torture machines! So unnatural! Hehe, LOL). It was like when I went to church, everyone became so wrapped up in the outfits and shoes we all had on – it truly became like a fashion show.
So to sum up reason one – I wanted to honor God by being humble and simple in how I dressed myself so that attention wasn’t brought to me and my clothes, but to the beauty of Christ. I didn’t want to be a distraction to my brothers in Christ by the way I would have to walk in high heels, and I didn’t want to distract my sisters either by feeding a love for mere display and worldly fashion.
“Whose adorning let it not be that outward adorning of plaiting the hair, and of wearing of gold, or of putting on of apparel; But let it be the hidden man of the heart, in that which is not corruptible, even the ornament of a meek and quiet spirit, which is in the sight of God of great price.” -1 Peter 3:3,4
#2) My body isn’t my own.
God holds me accountable to care for my, nay – His temple, physically, so that I can better commune with Him, and so His Holy Spirit can better dwell in me, spiritually. Did you know that wearing heels causes damage to your body and isn’t good for your health? Multiple studies have proven that wearing heels negatively affects your muscles, tendons, bones, back and posture. Click here for a list of some articles about the topic!
For me, I like to stick with simple, nice flat shoes so that I don’t have to ever worry about health issues, balancing and not falling, bad posture, getting a heel caught in a crack, etc. This way, more of my mind can focus on Christ and less about what is on my feet. Flat shoes are more natural and simple, while still being able to be nice and appealing… as Jesus is 😉 Simple, nice flats can still be beautiful but are more “humble” and “modest” I guess one could say!
You know, it’s amazing how we can do things that are painful and that we know are harmful to ourselves, just to glorify and gratify ourselves and even others! Whether it is the food we eat, how we treat others or what we wear – we can know it isn’t good for us mentally, physically or spiritually, but when self is in the way (meaning Christ isn’t in the picture), we make some pretty interesting decisions that I am sure make the angels look in awe. “Beauty is pain” is the saying pushed on young women to encourage them to keep on trying to wear these fashion statements regardless of even physical pain. We are being trained by society to be “slaves to fashion!” I wonder how Jesus feels when He sees this happening all over the world — training little girls to do anything to look nice 🙁
Now, after not having worn heels for so long, if I even try on a pair of low heels or wedges, my feet and calves start to hurt! This is because of the physical effects on our feet and calf muscles and tendons. They shorten/shrink and tense up when we wear heels, and then when we wear flats, they have to stretch back out and that ends up being painful after wearing heels over a period of time! The muscles in your calves can even weaken and shorten permanently! Isn’t that crazy? No to mention calluses and bunions/corns! I used to wear 3+ inch shoes and now I can’t even wear 1 1/2 inch heels…it’s amazing how our body responds! I transitioned from heels to wedges and little by little the Holy Spirit kept impressing me with these thoughts (actually against my own desire to wear heels and wedges because I thought they were so “cute”) until my desire became new and completely different from what it was before. It’s amazing how God changes us! If you want more info about how heels affect your health, there are some really cool and informative pictures and a link at the very bottom of this blog! Check it out 🙂
“What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.” -1 Corinthians 6:19, 20-
So…What to Wear?
So now you can kind of see why I made the decision to get rid of my heels — but now what do I wear? I went shopping recently and found some really nice flats and sandals that would go great with my skirts and dresses this Spring and Summer for not only casual attire, but for work, church and more formal occasions! I hope these ideas can help you. If you would like to see how to pair these shoes with skirts and dresses, please let me know! I would love to make a video on it if it can help you 🙂 You can totally look nice in your skirts and dresses without looking “frumpy” or “grandma-ish”, while still being simple, modest and even mindful of your health with the right kind of shoes!
All we do should be to please God because we love Him – salvation is a gift and we show we are thankful for that gift by giving God all the glory due to Him. It is only God that works in us to do good (Philippians 2:13) – let us let Him live His life within us!
Oh, and please consider this!
There is a quote from a website about how to wear heels that says this:“Wearing high heels can make you stand so that your legs look slimmer, your stomach flatter, and your femininity unstoppable. It can also do wonders for your stride, but walking in high heels is not a natural talent – it’s a learned skill by practice and discipline.”
But I challenge you to consider this thought and to live it, by God’s grace, in your lives:
“Having the character of Christ makes you stand strong so that when others see you, you look and are happier; you look and are more loving; and makes your desire to live for Him by loving and serving others, obeying Him and being a virtuous woman, unstoppable. It can also do wonders for your faith, but having the character of Christ is not natural to our carnal minds and nature – it is a learned lifestyle made by beholding and following our dear and loving Saviour by letting Him change our hearts by His grace, and made also by practice, discipline and conquering self.”
(Note: I didn’t include sandals in this list, because I think most of us know that sandals are awesome with skirts and dresses! So don’t leave those out ;-))
Flats (Ballet Style):
I would like to say that flats are a modest girl’s “best friends”. There are so many styles of flats and they go perfectly with skirts and dresses! They can be casual or formal and worn in the hot weather and even in the colder weather with some tights! Flats are perfect for everyday use and especially for occasions when sandals/flip flops may not be appropriate (such as work or church). Flats are totally comfy, cute, modest, simple and very becoming for a young lady growing up in Christ. Below are some types of pairs that I personally have and that I’ve been using for even years and years!
Boots are so practical, versatile and also go very nicely with longer skirts and dresses! During the cold and harsh months of the year, knee high boots keep my feet and legs extra warm and protected from the harsh elements, look very nice with skirts and dresses, go with everything I wear, and are very comfortable. I recommend having a knee high length pair of boots first before having an ankle high or mid-calf height pair, because if you end up wearing a skirt or dress that isn’t down to your ankles, some lower boot height and shorter skirt combos might be a little awkward ! But that’s just an idea/personal preference! 🙂 Here are examples of the boots I’ve been wearing and loving!
Sneakers, Boat Shoes, Moccasins, Espadrilles