Grace’s ringlet curls wrapped around her spangly bracelets as she leaned across our bubble gum tea party. She wiggled her index finger in the space between our faces. “C’mere, Mommy…real close and breathe big with me,” and we did as if together, we could breathe in tiny moments like solid molecules. “Mmmm…I love you. You stink really good today, Mommy.” Of course, I completely understood that it was the scent of my perfume but what Grace really smelled was my love.
Everybody’s love smells different.
My Italian grandma was never a gushing geyser of sentiments but I do remember the endless flow of Little Debbies that grew within the pockets of her flowered, polyester housecoat. They’d send me on cream filling waves across her kitchen linoleum to the gold shag carpeted guest room. I never knew what treasures waited behind the real imitation wood closet doors with their shiny brass knobs. There were always stacks of toys, games, and primary colored striped clothes that if they were too big for me, I could pass to my older sister and too small, given to a younger cousin.
My grandma’s love smelled like a mix of garlic and mothballs.
In the Old Testament around the time of the battles between the “ites” and the ambivalent Israelites, animal sacrifices were pleasing aromas to God. I’ve read the New Testament starting with the red letters enough to know what Jesus saw, heard, tasted, touched but what did Jesus smell?
Lazarus was dead for four days
A woman with an issue of blood for 12 years
Legion and his tomb dwelling demons
And how about that mid-dinner pedi Jesus did for all of his disciples?
Let’s face it, what Jesus had to smell would leave us gagging. Nowhere do we read about Jesus priming his hand sanitizer bottle or getting into a Febreze spraying frenzy after each encounter.
Not a mention of what He smelled, because maybe what Jesus smelled was love. My friends, I hope you stink really good to Jesus.
Live a life filled with love following the example of Christ. He loved us and offered himself as a sacrifice for us, a pleasing aroma to God. Ephesians 5:2
I commit to:
Retrace the steps across and around the decades of your life. When were the times you felt, if God loves me or when He loves me. Simply, because he loves me. How strong was your prayer life and your faith? The firmer you are rooted in faith, you are no longer an “unsecure person.” God’s love isn’t earned like a merit badge. It’s freely given because God is love and He loves you.