2 Corinthians 2:14–16 (NIV): But thanks be to God, who always leads us as captives in Christ’s triumphal procession and uses us to spread the aroma of the knowledge of him everywhere.
Every year, the rest of the volunteers and I move into the pavilion, bringing tables, chairs, balloons, and face-paints. Around 4pm on Thursday, one kid pokes his face into the door, tentatively wondering if we are open for business. A few minutes after he leaves, triumphantly holding his balloon creation and sporting a paint-plastered face, we are swarmed by kids of all ages, including those who would never admit being a kid in any other situation.
The County Fair is a blast. Each face-painted and each balloon-made created a memory for those kids, who hopefully will look back on it with fondness.
As we sat in the pavilion, we experienced first-hand the odors of the county fair. The smell of fried food. The wafting of animals being cleaned. The pile of manure and chips. Every smell attached to a memory. Every memory attached to an emotion. Those who stuck around the fair for multiple days began to smell like the fair, for better or for worse.
The Bible says that everyone gives off a spiritual smell, either life or death, depending on who we are spending time with. Those of us who are followers of Jesus Christ are called to give off an aroma of life.
When Jesus lived on earth, he was known as someone who loved unconditionally. He showed everyone compassion and respect. He listened to everyone and encouraged those who were weak. His love is not a normal love.
He also spoke truth, calling people to account for their sin and holding religious leaders to blame for their hypocrisy. He did not speak out of hatred, but out of love, pushing everyone around him to reflect their Creator. This brings the most joy and fulfilment.
Everyone who interacted with Jesus, experiencing his love and his truth, remarked on how different he was.
We who call ourselves his followers should live in a such a way that others say: “You smell like Jesus.” Who do people say you smell like?
Pastor of Calvary Bible Church, Neligh, NE. Missionary with RHMA. Husband to Maggie. Father to Grace, David, and Daniel. Saved by Jesus Christ