What Fragrance Are You?

I am enjoying a delightful time of life having my son, his wife and their two children live with us for what will soon seem to be a very short year. Our schedules are hectic, but we are able to do many things together that long distance does not allow. Sometimes there are simple talks during car rides to the bus depot. Oftentimes we share dinner together. During the holidays we had many days of laughter, games and gifts of time and thoughtfulness. I am choosing to dwell on the present and the moments we are sharing, for the day will quickly come that they will move on and our together time will be over.

Both grandchildren have endearing personalities and so much to offer. Thirteen-year-old Kori is sweet and is quick to give a hug or to send a loving text when activities keep us apart. She has a beautiful voice and would love to walk in her Nonnie’s footsteps to be involved in music and drama in some way. There is no other way to say this: Josiah, eleven, is a clown! Much like his dad who as a boy would make up names and put on funny expressions just to make his mother laugh, Josiah lives for the laugh too. He also has a very sensitive spirit and heart, bringing us all near to tears at Christmas as he thanked God for the opportunity to have this year with his Papa and me. Could anything bring more joy to a grandparent’s heart?
If one is careful to pay attention, much can be learned from Josiah. He is analytical and inquisitive, and he often hits the nail right on the head, as they say, in terms of perceiving and sharing truth in its most elementary form. It is in this light that I share the following: At the beginning of his school year Josiah had to write a little essay about himself. Amidst the information about his family’s reason for being in Colorado and the list of positives and negatives about his school experience was this statement: “I really dislike school because it smells like moldy hamburgers.” Hmmm- makes you want to run right over and take a whiff, doesn’t it? Perhaps some would have an entirely different view, but if that was what my olfactory sense was telling me, I’m sure that school wouldn’t be my favorite place either. Who can even think when smelling decayed meat?
This immediately brought to mind a Bible passage that explains the fragrance that should emanate from a believer. “But thanks be to God, who in Christ always leads us in triumphal procession, and through us spreads the fragrance of the knowledge of him everywhere. For we are the aroma of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing, to one a fragrance from death to death, to the other a fragrance from life to life” (2 Corinthians 2:14-16). No matter the perception of the ones around us, it is up to us to carry the Lord’s wonderful, inviting aroma no matter with whom we keep company. The chances are much greater that others will be drawn to us, not be driven from us. Even if their actions and reactions seem to be quite the opposite, when a crisis occurs or they are in need of prayer, they will know to whom they can turn when they have the desire to somehow draw closer to God. God can use us for His glory as we radiate the fragrance that comes from His character and love.
Let’s give Josiah and others a reason to be fond of us, not to be repelled by us. “Thanks, buddy, for this very important lesson. I hope that I carry a fragrance that draws you and others to me, and thus to God, always.”

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