Savannah closed her eyes, breathed in deeply and smiled.
"What are you doing?" asked her mother. On an errand to Grandma's house the mother and daughter stood in the bedroom.
"I'm smelling Grandma," replied the little girl.
"What does Grandma smell like?" Mother asked with a chuckle.
"Like Jesus!" was Savannah's quick reply.
When I first heard that story I thought Savannah would say pancakes, cookies or flowers. But she said, "Jesus." I am not a grandmother yet, but I already know that I want Savannah's grandmother to give me lessons.
Children speak so honestly. Actually, "smelling like Jesus" is a worthy goal - a Biblical one. Paul writes in 1 Corinthians 2:14 that God is "manifesting through us the sweet aroma of the knowledge of Him in every place.” Verse 15 describes believers as being “a fragrance of Christ … among those who are perishing.”
For those of us with school age children, fall marks the beginning of a new year with the start up of teams, clubs, lessons and numerous opportunities to meet people. Will it be just another busy schedule or an opportunity to bring a refreshing fragrance to those who have never had much use for Christ or His church?
Have you ever wondered what you smell like to the receptionist at your child's school? Would that be the fragrance of a sweet bouquet or the stench of a forgotten lunch pail left in the locker over the weekend?
To your child's coach, are you aromatic Old Spice or reeking old gym socks? Do the PTA parents dodge you like stinking Limburger cheese rather than seek you like fresh-from-the-oven chocolate chip cookies?
I don’t think religious words or piety are the fan that sends the fragrant aroma. I don’t think Savannah’s grandmother shared theological platitudes or flew off the anger grid with lectures of correction. It was her actions and the interest she showed in her granddaughter’s life that smelled so sweet.
No matter how we act, if we claim to be Christians and attend church, our behavior will be associated with His. How does Jesus smell? Hopefully like you and me.
Your very lives are a letter that anyone can read
by just looking at you.
Christ himself wrote it--not with ink,
but with God's living Spirit..."
2 Corinthians 3:3