14 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. 15 For we are to God the pleasing aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing. 16 To the one we are an aroma that brings death; to the other, an aroma that brings life.
2 Corinthians 2:14-16a
I woke up Easter morning to the intoxicating fragrance of flowers. As I padded downstairs to the source – 3 potted hyacinths and a large Easter lily, all sitting on my dining room table – the scent grew stronger. The lily’s flowers opened wide like a trumpet poised to announce “He is risen! See the empty tomb!” I inhaled deeply and couldn’t help smiling while I fixed breakfast for my sleepy family.
At some point in time, we’ve all been in the presence of someone who bears the stench of death. You leave their presence feeling crummy and dirty inside and out and like the world’s a horribly evil and hopeless place to live. Maybe the conversation was laced with dreadful headlines or reeked of bitterness. I know I’ve been the source of a death stench more times than I care to count.
And then there are those whose presence I leave feeling like I just experienced a rejuvenating walk in a garden. Their company brings peace and life, even in the midst of storms. Their fruit is ripe, bursting with sweet scent, begging you to partake. Through them, you understand Jesus better. How even while hanging minutes from His own cruel death, He could assure the criminal next to Him that he’d soon have life like he’d never know before. Because he believed in Jesus, he knew life in the face of death. As can we. The resurrection. An aroma that smells so sweet in this death-obsessed world.
How I desire to be one who exudes the aroma of the resurrection, of life!