it is a merciful fragrance
Open Your Bible
Psalm 119:153-176, Proverbs 4:20-22, 2 Corinthians 2:14-17, Acts 4:23-31
psst: we are sharing additional resources at the end of this post!
Text: Psalm 119:153-176, Proverbs 4:20-22, 2 Corinthians 2:14-17, Acts 4:23-31
It is the Story.
It is the word and breath of God.
It is the power of God.
It is living.
It is enduring.
It is for hearing and telling.
This is the Bible.
As those who have heard the Story – who have been changed by the Word, who have received new life from the very breath of God, who know its power and its aliveness, who believe in its unbreakable-ness and hope – ours is the privilege of carrying it to others.
Now, here is where I want you to lean in close, because this is the part where we – where I – can easily misunderstand. We are not God’s salespeople. In fact, do you know how His Word speaks of us, of those who carry the message of the Gospel? It calls us “the aroma of Christ.” The Bible says Christ Himself leads us on, “and through us spreads the fragrance of the knowledge of him everywhere” (2 Corinthians 2:14-15, emphasis added).
An aroma is not an argument. A aroma is not a list that can be checked off on paper or a perfectly rehearsed pitch. An aroma is something experienced. It transforms the air simply because of what it is.
Sisters, we are the aroma of Christ.
Not peddlers of a way of life.
Not salespeople for a system of beliefs.
We are those commissioned by God to transform the very air in which we live, not because of who we are but because of who He is. And who He is is the same God from that scene from the Book of Acts, when the Holy Spirit answered the early Church’s cry: “Lord… grant [us] to continue to speak your word with all boldness, while you stretch out your hand to heal, and signs and wonders are performed through the name of your holy servant Jesus.” (Acts 4:29-30, emphases added)
It truly is all about Him. And what He’s all about is love.
Mercy. Grace. Wholeness. Justice. Redemption. Hope. These are the things that should come from our steeping our souls in God’s Word. We are not to wield it as a weapon to beat the unbelieving into submission. We are simply to hold out Christ.
Christ in the cup of water we hand to the thirsty stranger.
Christ in the sitting quietly on the sofa of a lonely neighbor.
Christ in our arms and hands as we lift the burden of a weary friend.
If this is the Bible – if all we’ve read these past 9 days is true – then this is our next step: “To grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ” (2 Peter 3:18) and to be the fragrance of a merciful God to an aching world.
Lord, may it be so. Amen.