Despite devilish and divisive opinions to the contrary, there exist persons explicitly ordained and commanded to say what is–and what is not–modest. They are called fathers and husbands. The reason I said “To get out of this trap is going to take generations. I suspect that my daughters may be among the first Yiayias in a long time” is because Yiayia’s don’t occur out of nowhere. Nor do their standards of modesty arise from the ether. They are the product of long and loving toil from their fathers and husbands.
A good name is to be chosen rather than great riches,
and favor is better than silver or gold.
2 The rich and the poor meet together;
the Lord is the maker of them all.
3 The prudent sees danger and hides himself,
but the simple go on and suffer for it.
4 The reward for humility and fear of the Lord
is riches and honor and life.
5 Thorns and snares are in the way of the crooked;
whoever guards his soul will keep far from them.
6 Train up a child in the way he should go;
even when he is old he will not depart from it.
25 Husbands, love your wives, as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her,26 that he might sanctify her, having cleansed her by the washing of water with the word,27 so that he might present the church to himself in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish. 28 In the same way husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. 29 For no one ever hated his own flesh, but nourishes and cherishes it, just as Christ does the church, 30 because we are members of his body.
The generations before us–since at least and including “The Greatest Generation”–have not only dropped the ball, but tossed it out of the park and declared the whole activity of raising children to be a null and boring and even oppressive pastime. The field itself was let to go wild; so now men like Empath, Dalrock, Oscar–and yes myself–are flat lost in a thorny, rocky, arid wilderness that many pretend is still a fit ballpark. It’s a lie.
What seems so mysterious and subjective to women is not to men. That is because while women are well-positioned to police these matters, they are not the arbiters of them. Husbands and fathers are. What makes Yiayias unseemly to modern people–why they work to make them irrelevant, and corral them into oblivion–is that those women bear the beauty of truth from a lifetime of listening to their husbands and fathers; who they did not rebel against and who they did not divorce as our post-modern women do.
Of those husbands and fathers, not one of them was perfect. It didn’t matter because for the person in the position of submission: Obedience unto a husband and father and unto God will itself prove fruitful. Likewise, imperfection in training a child or washing a wife with the Word does not nullify God’s promise. Steadfast faithfulness with what we have been entrusted will bring forth a harvest.
So, modesty is defined and judged by the fathers and husbands, and policed by older women
2 But as for you (Titus, the pastor of the church in Crete, a man) , teach what accords with sound doctrine. 2 Older men are to be sober-minded, dignified, self-controlled, sound in faith, in love, and in steadfastness. 3 Older women likewise are to be reverent in behavior, not slanderers or slaves to much wine. They are to teach what is good, 4 and so train the young women to love their husbands and children, 5 to be self-controlled, pure, working at home, kind, and submissive to their own husbands, that the word of God may not be reviled.
Likewise, despite raging controversies over whether Christians ought to date, hook-up, engage in formalized courtship, whathaveyou–the main and Biblical thing is to do is: What your own father and husband approves. Dating, courtship, “the college experience”…these are all systems that may have been put forth as helpful guidelines, but the moment the father becomes subject to them rather than the systems subject to the fathers, then they become corrals to pen in the shepherds. This cannot be allowed to continue.
Patriarchy scares women. More importantly it incites them to harridan heights under the excuse of fear. But like a man must gird his loins even when fear turns his bowels to water, women are going to have to reach deep down insides themselves and kill that rebellious spirit.
If the Christian’s Men’s Sphere proves anything, it’s that fathers and husbands will have discussions among themselves. They will set the community standards; fluidly and organically, but like concerned family farmers with a vested interest and not as eco-crazed nihilists or money-crazed corpo-rape-tions. These things can remain subjective and mysterious to women (as their nature adores), but to us they will be toiled over and decided in love. At the same time, we depend most heavily on the support of women to uphold us as we undertake these tasks. It is not good for us to be alone. The blessings of Yiayias are hard to overstate. Just ask those of us fathers and husbands who lack them.