When I go to Mom Catalano’s house, I know when she’s cooking turnips because to me, they stink! But, that awful smell also means there’s a great roast beef meal in the making. Curious, isn’t it? The smell of cooking turnips, which I hate, announces a feast of roast beef, Yorkshire pudding, and baked potatoes which I love!
The fragrance some people wear announces their presence before they enter the room. I always knew when my friend, Dean, was in my church before I laid eyes on him, because of the unique cologne he wore. When he died suddenly years ago, I went to his home to pick up clothing for his burial. As his wife opened his closet the familiar fragrance swept over me. Tears flowed! I wanted to see him walk through the door once again, saying “Hello, Pastor!” as he had done so many times before!
The Word says, “… wherever we go He uses us to tell others about the Lord and to spread the Good News like a sweet perfume. Our lives are a fragrance presented by Christ to God. But this fragrance is perceived differently by those being saved and by those perishing. To those who are perishing we are a fearful smell of death and doom. But to those who are being saved we are a life-giving perfume. And who is adequate for such a task as this?” (2 Corinthians 2:14-16 NLT)
What ‘fragrance’ will you leave behind in the rooms you pass through on this day?
Will people ‘smell’ the sweet perfume of the holiness of Jesus on you?
As the Word reminds us, the odor of Christ in our lives will not always be a welcomed fragrance! To those who are in open rebellion, the smell of Christ on us will be a reminder of pending judgment and Hell – a stench of death!
“And who is adequate for such a task as this?”
Paul implies that we can’t splash on a little “Jesus” perfume to cover the stink of persistent and deliberate sin! The fragrance of Christ permeates our lives ONLY WHEN we have spent time with Him, soaking in His Spirit which lets His character be created in us! Sit down and rest in His Presence. Invite Him to be near, yes, to live in you. Then, your inadequacy will be wrapped and covered by His Presence. The ‘fragrance’ that trails you will be the sweet smell of LIFE, both pleasing to God and those who love Him!
Let the beauty of Jesus be seen in me,
All His wonderful passion and purity.
O my Savior divine, all my nature refine,
‘Till the beauty of Jesus be seen in me.
Albert Orbson, public domain