Last week we talked about the victorious aroma of Christ. This week, we’re looking at how to smell like a Christian.
When one of the grandmothers comes to visit we usually evict one of the boys from their bed and make them sleep in the loft. Confession. Sometimes after they leave I don’t wash the sheets before letting the boy back in his bed. But the thing is, my boys love putting their face in their pillow that night and inhaling deeply. And I get a kick out of hearing them exclaim, “Ahhhh…smells like Nana or Grammy!”
We all have a distinctive smell about us. What we wear, eat, do. Where we go. Who we hang around with. Our bathing habits and our body chemistry. All impact our scent.
So, how do you smell like a Christian?
When I was deployed, bathing didn’t happen nearly as regularly as it does now. Somehow the women’s shower hours always happened while I was working. There were times I went without a shower for two weeks. In the desert in full combat gear under lots of stress. I don’t think I have to tell you what that smelled like. It felt so good to wash those caked on layers of dirt and grime down the drain.
Our sin collects on us like that, too. Just because we’ve been baptized doesn’t mean we don’t need to repent regularly. We’re still human and prone to the desires of our flesh—not ruled by them, but not immune either. Daily, if not more often, we need to wash away the stench of our sin with the blood of Christ. Regular repentance keeps sin from sabotaging our scent.Regular repentance keeps sin from sabotaging our scent. #smellgod #experiencegod #5senses Click To Tweet
Put on the right outfit.
There’s just something about putting together the perfect outfit. It changes a girl’s whole attitude and perspective. Or is that just me? Typically, my favorite outfits smell like me, my detergent, my oils, my soap, shampoo, and lotion. The more I wear them, there they smell like me.
As Christians, God has given each of us an garment fit for a princess. And to Him it makes us smell like His Son. So, every morning we ought to be putting on Christ’s robes of righteousness. It is the one outfit that will never wear out, fits just right every time I put it on, and is always in style. The more we wear it, the more we smell like Christ. It’s the only outfit that can give us the confidence to face the world and deflect Satan’s shame-filled accusations and lies.
Consume good food.
When I’ve eaten garlic (which happens almost every meal) or just downed a cup of coffee, I’m always a little self conscious about how my breath smells to others. Not only can it give us a case of halitosis, but some things we eat even seep out of our pores. If you’ve ever been to Korea, you know what I mean.
So, if we are (or even smell like) what we eat shouldn’t we be consuming the best food there is? Jesus said, man should not live on bread alone, but instead on the Word of God. Jesus is the Word and the Bread that sustain our very life. When we read, study, and internalize His Word, it will come out of our mouths and when we eat the Bread of Life, we smell like Christians. (More on experiencing God through our sense of taste in a a couple weeks.)When we eat the Bread of Life, we'll smell like Christians! #experiencegod #smellgod #5senses Click To Tweet
Exercise your faith.
On days when I’ve exercised (which don’t happen as often as they should), I know I need to shower. I don’t want to go to bed smelling like a gym rat. It’s a very distinctive and powerful odor.
So is exercising our faith. We do that by not only recognizing the strengths God has given us and using them to serve His people, but also by turning to Him in our weakness. Even when it doesn’t directly benefit us. Even when we don’t know how it will all work out. Even when it may not be popular. Stand up for what we believe in. Step out in faith to do God’s will. Lift our cares up to the Lord. People can tell we’re Christians when we step out in faith for the purpose of bringing God glory, but if we’re not exercising our faith, we won’t smell like Christians.
Go to the House of the Lord.
When we visit our relatives, our boys always mention how they smell like Aunt So-And-So’s (there are too many to mention all my lovely sisters by name) house as we drive away. Especially if they’ve done our laundry while we were there.
The same amazing thing happens when we visit with God in the place He promised to meet us…His House. When we go to church we get to exchange our dirty laundry for Christ-scented robes. Sure we can (and absolutely should) repent often on our own, but hearing our forgiveness announced by one anointed to bring the good news is a powerful way to get our Christian scent boosted. Like I said last week, Christ’s victorious aroma clings to us when we commune with Him, when we go to His house, we’ll carry His scent with us when we leave.
Hang out with the right crowd.
I tend to take on the traits of those I spend time with. Accents, mannerisms, preferences, habits. The characteristics of the people I hang out with rub off on me. Sometimes, I even begin to smell like my friends, just a little.
While it is certainly good to go to church on Sunday or Saturday night and Wednesday or whenever you can really, it doesn’t do us much good if that is our only interaction with other Christians. God gave us a fellowship of believers and community of Christians to do life with, outside the walls of the church, to be the Church to the world. And He uses our interactions with other Christians to sharpen and hone and refine our faith — to make us more like His Son. (Believe it or not, next week we’re going to look at why you might want to hang out with the wrong crowd.)
Know your ancestry.
Some people are just prone to smelling stronger than others. Just ask the next dog you see. Some of our inherited traits impact the way we smell, primarily our immune system which fights the bacteria that cause bad breath and body odor. Families often carry similar scents.
By faith we belong to God’s family. Not only are we children of God created in His image, but we also have a rich inheritance in His kingdom. Because of our royal ancestry we have inherited a rich aroma. Let’s never forget it!
Can people smell Christ on you? Which of these 7 things could you do to smell more like a Christian?Can people smell Christ on you? Which of these 7 things could you do to smell more like a Christian? #experienceGod #smellGod #5senses Click To Tweet
Linking Up With
For more encouragement please join the discussions on these fabulous blog link ups – Suzanne Eller, Faith On Fire, Susan B. Mead, Faith Filled Friday, Grace and Truth, Faith and Fellowship Friday, Soul Survival, Rah Rah Link Up, Tell His Story, Sitting Among Friends, Testimony Tuesday, Planting Roots, and Fresh Market Friday, Salt and Light, and Becoming Press’s Writer Wednesday, Moments of Hope