Much more than a dress… Greene’s mission is to show that value isn’t found in a dress

Published 11:52 pm Friday, February 21, 2020

The world is a hard place to live these days especially if you are a young lady struggling to meet the standards that most consider the status quo for being valued as worthy by today’s mark.
With many formals and proms right around the corner, fear and worry has already crept in for some of those young ladies as they listen to their friends at school talk about shopping for dresses and how much their parents, grandparents, or guardians spent to acquire those dresses.
An immediate reaction is just to separate from the rest of their friends so they are not cornered into talking about what they are wearing because some simply don’t have the access to funds needed to buy a dress that measures up to that of their friend(s) along with the standard necessities in shoes and jewelry as well.
For that reason, Kristen Greene has followed a calling to make formal and prom dresses available to those who might otherwise not be able to afford such an opportunity.
Greene has recently begun a new ministry to reach out to help those who may need a nice dress, shoes, and jewelry to wear to their school formal or prom.
The name of the ministry is More than a Dress.
“It honestly was something that God laid on my heart because I feel led to just to encourage young ladies,” Greene said for the reasoning behind her new mission field. “I know when I was young that prom was a big deal for me and I had a single mother working at the time and we didn’t have a lot of money to pay for things.
“God put people in my life that helped to alleviate that burden and that is kind of what I want to do. I want to be able to give away free dresses and to love on young girls and let them know that their worth isn’t found in anything that this world can give – it’s solely found through Jesus.”
The process is simple – contact Greene and let her know that a dress is needed. There is only one stipulation for using the dress.
“They have to let me know that they are in need of a dress and I would like to keep it within the seventh grade to the high school level,” added Greene. “The only thing is that if they take a dress, I would like for them to bring it back so we can share it with other people.
“There is no requirement- they just come and pick it up, wear it, and bring it back to me.”
Even though Greene has some dresses and shoes, she said she is just wanting to get the word out that if anyone has a formal or prom dress that they would like to use as a blessing to others by donating it to More than a Dress, she would be more than happy to accept those donations to help these young ladies.
“Right now I just have it on social media,” Greene stated. “I don’t have many dresses right now. I will take any dress donations, any shoes, and any jewelry. If anyone wants to donate gift cards to help with other supplies we can take those too.
“I just really look at the bigger picture. You have the world pulling young ladies in all different directions especially social media where they paint a picture that you have to be perfect and look a certain way, you have to have so many followers and so many likes. I just want them to know that is not where your worth is found.
“Yes, we are going to doll you up, we are going to give you a dress, but ultimately your worth is found through Jesus and I just want young ladies to know that.”
Greene doesn’t offer any formal or prom wear for males at this time as she is just getting up and rolling on something that just didn’t come to her overnight.
“Right now I just feel led to take care of the girls right now,” stated Greene. “I officially started planning it in September. I have felt led to do it for a long time but I just never took the step to do it just out of fear.”
Greene, whose husband Steven, is the Pastor at Unaka Baptist Church said her husband has always supported her but never pushed her to do the mission.
Having experienced some of the same things like many of the young ladies experience today was an eye-opener to Greene when she was growing up and she wants to do all she can to make formal and prom time a memory that will never be forgotten.
“When I was in school if you didn’t have the best then you weren’t enough,” Greene said. “I don’t want people to think that because they have to come and get a free dress that they aren’t enough.
“I want them to know that sometimes it’s okay to ask for help. That’s what people are here for.”
Greene utilizes a simple mission statement – ‘Spreading the love of Christ one dress at a time’. The Bible verse she relies upon comes from the Song of Solomon 4:7 “Thou are all fair, my love; there is no spot in thee.”
“I think today that teens, in general, have a lot of pressure on them,” Greene continued. “From the time I was in school to now, I know where I work with the young people in church the things that they tell me they go through, I couldn’t imagine what they are having to go through even at the age of 12.
“We live in such a social media world – there’s Instagram, there’s twitter, there’s Facebook and so many more and you have all these people post pictures that make it look like they have a picture-perfect life and you have these girls that try to compare to them and it seems that there is never enough – I know that was me when I was in school.
“I always tried to find my worth in everything that I possibly could and I always fell short. It was like one day a couple of years ago that I know Jesus spoke to me and said that I was looking in the wrong place,” continued Greene. “He told me that I never would find what I was looking for until I could find it in Him.
“And it made perfect sense. Everybody failed me because I was looking for them to give me worth and it was never going to happen.”
Greene said giving a young lady a dress might seem silly to some, but she shared a story that showed what the power of giving just a dress did for one young lady.
“I had a girl that came to our church that needed a dress for a little winter formal and when she tried it on her eyes just completely lit up,” Greene stated.
“She was so thankful and so happy and I was upset because my room was not set up and was a mess but when she put it on she went from looking sad to just glowing and that’s the purpose.
“It’s like your life may be crazy right now and everything going against you but I want you to know at this very moment Jesus loves you and that’s where you are going to find your worth. He thinks that you are valuable and worthy and are chosen because He died on the cross for you and that’s all that matters.”
To get a dress is very simple- as a matter of fact, it’s just a call, text, or email away.
“They can call or text me at 423-440-9744 or email me at,” Greene said. “I have a Facebook page called More than a Dress so they can contact me on there as well.”

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