Of course it would be nice if a dress code from heaven fell down to us telling us exactly how much skin should be covered, etc. But the dress code from heaven has already been stated: “that the women adorn themselves in modest apparel, with propriety and moderation….which is proper for women professing godliness…” (1 Tim. 2:9-10).
The Christian faith is not a faith of rules and regulations but of liberty and wisdom. Women are to exercise and express their faith in God by many means, one of those being how we dress. And this requires wisdom. Official dress codes/rules have their place in schools or work places. But when it comes to how we live and apply God’s Word personally, we are to use wisdom. If we are simply given a list of rules, we don’t need to think for ourselves. We don’t need wisdom.
So I believe we ought to think world-viewishly about the way we dress at the pool, as well as how we dress at church or the grocery store or school. We should think like faithful Christian women.
We often apply our Christian worldview to literature, art, music, entertainment, and culture. But it obviously applies in our daily living as well: our view of our homes, food, family, gardening, really everything. Clearly it applies to how we “adorn ourselves.” So we ought to dress with a Christian worldview in mind.
Now I’m not saying that since we have no specific list of rules governing how short, how low, how tight, or how loose, that these things must not matter. Far from it. We ought to dress like wise women, not like fools. That means thinking about it. It means shopping with an eye toward what is proper for women professing godliness. A foolish woman dresses provocatively; a wise woman dresses attractively. What is attractive on one woman may be provocative on another. So this requires wisdom. And I always fall back on this: when in doubt, throw it out.
So what is the standard? Modesty is a good thing. It isn’t dorky or out of date. Modesty is a woman’s glory. It is concerned with propriety and moderation, which I take to mean good taste, not cheesy or cheap. Modesty is an attitude. It isn’t flamboyant or ridiculous. It is reverent, God-honoring. A modest woman has integrity and self-respect. She cares more for pleasing God than exposing herself to the grandstands. She has security in knowing who she is and Whom she serves.
So with all that in mind, dressing for the pool takes wisdom. Give it some thought and prayer. And be sure to check the mirror from the backside.