Have you ever noticed how certain smells can evoke particular memories in you? Lately it seems like everything reminds me of my wife! Have you seen the food seasonings ad on TV where they are saluting the “Dinner Makers?” Well, that ad came on the other night as we were watching something and I immediately pictured my wife puttering around the kitchen. While she was not raised with the same sense of emotion, affection and love for food and Italian cooking as was I, she always made meal times to be a fun event. She would draw the whole family into the process and the room would fill with laughter, chatter and the smells of delicious foods arising from the stove and oven.
She would do things differently than my Mom from the way she handled the utensils to the spices she favored and I enjoyed watching her work her magic on our meals. She has the most flexible fingers I have ever seen and would amaze us all with the ways she could manipulate, chop or slice vegetables. (Same thing when she played the piano… her little fingers seemed to fly all over the keys!) She has always enjoyed Mexican food and tended to use spices like chili powder in many of the dishes she prepared. Now when I see the bottle of chili power in our spice cabinet or smell its flavor I instantly think about her in the kitchen! I must be a little weird, but I have never been a big fan of Mexican food and I regret that I didn’t take her out to Mexican Restaurants more often. When she’s better we will definitely go exploring for Hispanic diners here in North Carolina… although they are definitely not as prolific as on the West Coast!
The bible tells us that Papa God is also reminded of certain memories when He picks up particular scents in the air. 2 Corinthians 2:15 informs us that the scent about us reminds Him of Jesus! The Apostle Paul declared that “for we are the aroma of Christ to God.” (Lexham English Bible) The Phillips paraphrase says that “we Christians have the unmistakable ‘scent’ of Christ.”
Ephesians 5:2 connects this aroma to Christ’s sacrifice on the cross saying “He gave his life for us as an offering and sacrifice, a soothing aroma to God.” (God’s Word ©) John Wesley explained “For we, the preachers of the gospel are to God a sweet odor of Christ. God is well pleased with this perfume diffused by us.” Think on that thought for a moment or two. Papa God, the Supreme Being of the universe, is well pleased when He thinks of you and me! That kinda makes your day doesn’t it?
S. Way in his The Letters of St Paul to Seven Churches and Three Friends with the Letter to the Hebrews eloquently wrote of this verse in 1906 that we are “Messiah’s incense upwafted to God in the sight of all…” That picture evoked the many times I would walk through the quiet campgrounds in the Redwoods or Sierra’s in California just as the campsites were beginning to come alive with campers arising in the morning.
It was always inspiring to see the smoke from the morning campfires wafting up through the tall trees and smell the wonderful aroma of fresh coffee brewing in the pots sitting on the grills of the fire pits. That picture and the scent of coffee in the air like every time we go into our local Target and pass by the Starbucks in the lobby of the store brings with it those wonderful memories of camping adventures with my family as a child, with my wife before the kids came along and of all the fun times over the years with our family in tow in our large tent and then with our trailer.
That is the same kind of warm and wonderful memories that God has of you and me every time the fragrance of our scent rising up to Him! He is not thinking thoughts of judgment and condemnation, but of how special you and I are to Him. When He thinks about us, He thinks about Jesus and the sacrifice He made for us… and it brings great pleasure to Him! Vincent’s Word Studies says that “It is not merely a sweet odor produced by Christ, but Christ Himself is the savor which exhales in their (our) character and work.”
If that doesn’t make you feel and KNOW that you are special, than I don’t know what will! So, celebrate the Father’s love for you today! Bask in the beauty of the fact that you are well pleasing unto the Father. Don’t listen to the lies that would try to get you to think that you are good for nothing… for that is simply NOT the way that God sees you! And let’s face it… His view of us is the only thing that really matters! Have a great day today. Stay in tune to His Word, and keep asking yourself… “What or Who’s opinion of me am I expecting to believe today?”