What’s That Smell?

John McKeel

The other day I was rummaging through some old pictures I had taken while hiking and climbing in Colorado. My favorites were the pictures of the beautiful mountain wildflowers – Columbine, Indian Paint Brush, Mountain-Forget-Me-Nots – the list is nearly endless.

These flowers have two different kinds of smells. Bees like some because they smell sweet. As the bees flit from blossom to blossom they carry pollen between the plants, but not every flower is sweet.

“What’s that smell?” my little daughter asked. “It smells like something died!

Just as some flowers smell sweet and attract bees, others smell like rotting meat and attract flies to carry their pollen. (Skunk weed is just one example.)

The Apostle Paul teaches that Christians smell like Christ (2 Corinthians 2:15, 16). That smell attracts some people and repels others. To some, it is the sweet smell of life and to others, Christianity smells like death. Jesus said, “I tell you the truth, whoever hears my word and believes he sent me has eternal life and will not be condemned; he has crossed over from death to life” (John 5:24). Christianity means life now and life to come. Nothing could be sweeter!

Try singing “Sweet, Sweet Spirit” this morning. Here is my prayer for today:

“Dear Lord, may we become the sweet scent of Christ. Help us breathe in your Spirit and live a life that spreads abroad the fragrance of your love.”

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