What does grace actually smell like? I’m pretty sure it’s breathtakingly beautiful. We don’t often think about our sense of smell—until we have the opportunity to inhale a good waft of something wonderful. A green apple. Clean laundry. Freshly baked bread. Lavender. And then we gulp it in greedily and go back for more, flaring our nostrils and absorbing the delight of the aroma, again and again.
Of course, there’s the other side of the proverbial coin, where we accidentally breathe in something disgustingly pungent and offensive, whereby we hold our breath, pinch our noses, and run for cover. I may not be in the diaper stage anymore, but I do have an English bulldog—I know what I’m speaking about here!
There’s a verse in the Bible that talks of us being a pleasing aroma:
We smell this good to the Father because of what Jesus has done for us. Some will be drawn to that Christ scent and others will be repelled by it. Let’s be honest here—there’s nothing worse than the nasal assault of overpowering perfume. You know, when someone walks into the room and you can actually taste it? We don’t want our grace fragrance to be false and far-flung, hitting everyone in the back of the throat with one foul swoop.
My favourite is when you detect something pleasant in the air and then you lean in close to someone and it’s even sweeter, even more beautiful than you thought at first. You want to know where she bought that perfume—you want to smell just like her!
Goodness, wouldn’t it be wonderful if people were aware of our “Christ aroma” to such an extent that they wanted Him, too? And that is as it should be, simply allowing His aroma of grace to permeate from our very lives—words, actions, and attitude, giving hope and love and light to all who breathe it in. It’s worth noting that in order for someone to be aware of our aroma, we need to be in pretty close proximity, rubbing shoulders with our people and doing life in a way that brings glory to God.
“It may not be an easy thing to live in sweet fellowship with all those with whom we come in contact; but that is what the grace of God is given to us for.” D.L. Moody
Grace to share the grace. Undoubtedly, there will be some who recoil at the aroma of Christ, just as there are some who can’t physically tolerate scents such as perfume. It will cause their eyes to water, their throats to swell, and they will flee. They are happy in their scent-free zone. They are blind to their need of His grace, and we can but pray from a distance.
“Everywhere we go, people breathe in the exquisite fragrance. Because of Christ, we give off a sweet scent rising to God, which is recognized by those on the way of salvation—an aroma redolent with life.” 2 Corinthians 2:14-15 (The Message)
Some days, I’m fairly sure I mask the fragrance of grace with my own version of what I think I should smell like. Other days I water it down so much it’s beyond recognizable as being of Christ. Not exactly “an aroma redolent with life”! But ultimately, our aroma of grace is an offering to the Father, and He loves and accepts it as such. He delights in us; He delights in you, His beloved.
My actual perfume of choice at the moment is called “Angel”. (I know, the pressure to live up to that one is immense.) Santa also popped a little bottle of “Grace” in my stocking this Christmas, as if he knew I might need some! 🙂 But what I truly desire is for my lifelong fragrance to be Jesus, diffusing the aroma of His grace to all.
Breathe in His sweet grace, friend. And radiate His love to those around you today.
Psst!! Interested in either of these lovely perfumes? Here are my Amazon Affiliate links (full disclosure here) which means I get a tiny commission while you pay the regular price for these beauties!
ANGEL by Thierry Mugler
AMAZING GRACE by Philosophy
*Linking up with some fabulous encouragers! Check them out: