Having a houseful of active boys, I am very aware of smells. Odors from five active boys vary with each kid and each activity. I’m not sure it’s pride that makes me say I can tell the difference from
Troy’s I-Just-Spent-a-Week-Camping-in-a-High-Adventure-Boy-Scout-Camp-Smell to
Matt’s I-Just-Ran-in-Football-Practice-Smell to
George’s I-Just-Fished-for-the-Last-Five-Hours,-Hooked-3,-and-Fell-in-Twice-Smell to
Noah’s I’m-in-5th-Grade-and-Still-(Sometimes)-Don’t-Realize-I-Actually-Have-to-Get-Wet-in-the-Shower-Smell to
And we haven’t even begun to discuss the
or the Mom-Gave-Us-ALL-Beans-For-Dinner-(Again)-Last-Night-Even-Though-We Hate-Beans-for-Dinner-Smell (Someone please remind me why I would do that?!?)
Ask anyone who’s been around kids for any length of time, and she will tell you
those sweet beautiful, innocent children – can smell pretty bad sometimes.
Actually, at times, they can downright stink!
But that kind of stink can be cured through showers, potpourri candles, and enough stick-ups in the shoes bins to keep the company afloat for years to come.
So the stink of my precious boys is not my biggest concern today.
Instead, I need to look at my own stink.
And not the kind that comes from my morning workout or from cleaning up after sick children or from hugging those yucky boys.
The stink I must face is the stink that can’t be washed away, but must be cleansed instead.
Saint Paul tells us in 2Corintheans 2:15-16,
For we are the aroma of Christ for God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing, to the latter an odor of death that leads to death, to the former and odor of life that leads to life.
When I read these words, I realize again that all I do is put under a microscope by some and inspected by many.
In fact, even what I think I keep hidden, unseen, and invisible is often observable – through the power of scent for example, and, if I am to reflect Christ, it must not be just in my visible actions but in those things that cannot be seen:
in my thoughts, my words, my heart, my strength, my mind, my soul.
It is only when I truly reflect Christ in ALL that I say and do, when I become so like Him that others cannot help but notice the very difference in the aroma I put out to the world, when that aroma is not of my own stink, but of the goodness and power, glory and Love of our living God that others may be led to peace through Him.
When the aroma I exude is one of hope and joy and love in ALL circumstances, only then I can, through the power of the Lord, be the aroma of Christ leading to life for those being saved – and a warning for those perishing, not of this earth but for eternally.
My odor will be inhaled by many, but only God knows who will be saved and who will perish; therefore, I must exude the odor of Christ’s beauty to all. Just as I cannot choose who inhales the beans we had for dinner, I can neither choose who inhales the degree to which I reflect Christ. I must reflect Him to the best of my ability in every moment, wand with every person.
And I pray that, just as those stinky kids are washed clean, bathed in baby shampoo, to smell sweeter than I could have imagined in my pre-mom days, my Father daily washes me clean, bathed in His Forgiveness, His Peace, and His Love, so I smell sweeter than anyone could have imagined in their pre-Christ days.
Draw others to you so that they may be drawn to God.
Be the strong but sweetly scented aroma of Christ in the world today.
Put on the perfume of Christ this morning.