Do you know how perfume is made? Designing a new fragrance is a complicated process involving a combination of various oils, herbs, and spices. And of course, flowers. To make the most of a flower’s fragrance, you have to crush it. When the petals are crushed, broken open, pulled apart, that’s when the truest, richest, deepest fragrance spills out.
You know, God is creating you to be a one-of-a-kind Designer fragrance. He has brought all the ingredients together, orchestrated all the details of your life – causing some and allowing others – to bring out the best in you, to help you be all that you were meant to be. And to fulfill His purposes for you. As you surrender to the process, you become more and more like Jesus. You bring glory to Him – and you bring others to Him
“Everywhere we go, people breathe in the exquisite fragrance. Because of Christ, we give off a sweet scent rising to God, which is recognized by those on the way of salvation – an aroma redolent with life.” (2 Corinthians 2:14-15 MSG)
In other words, to God and to others, we smell like Jesus! Or at least we’re supposed to. We can inspire, challenge, comfort, soothe, and strengthen others by bearing the beautiful fragrance of Christ to a world lost in sin. Others smell something rare, something precious, something wonderful and it draws them to Him!
By nature, the process requires crushing. The Bible tells us that Jesus Himself was crushed and broken on our behalf. He became a pleasing aroma when He bore our sins – when He suffered and died on the cross – taking the punishment in our place. He gave off the fragrance of obedience, submission, and devotion to the will of God.
Was it worth it – all that suffering – to become the source of eternal salvation for all who believe? Jesus thought it was. For the joy set before Him, He endured the cross, scorning its shame. (Hebrews 12:2) He had His eyes on eternity. And so should we.
“As God’s grace reaches more and more people, there will be great thanksgiving, and God will receive more and more glory. That is why we never give up. Though our bodies are dying, our spirits are being renewed every day. For our present troubles are small and won’t last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever!” (2 Corinthians 4:15-17 NLT)
Over and over God reminds us that our suffering has a greater purpose. He promises that it is not for nothing. “In all things God works for the good of those who love Him.” (Romans 8:28) One day we will see. We will understand. And we won’t regret a single step of the process He used to make us a beautiful aroma, a sweet-smelling fragrance that brings pleasure and glory and honor to Him!
This Week’s Assignment:
Don’t forget, if you’re participating in our Virtual VBS for GrownUp Girls: Summer in the Son — an online study of the Gospel of John:
Read John Chs 17-19.
Memorize John 16:33.
Can you believe it’s been eight weeks already? Only one more week of VBS left… let’s finish strong!
What fragrance are you giving off today? Can others “smell” Jesus in you?