As pleasing as baking bread
After the track meet last week, we stopped at Johnny's on Route 60 for pizza with the team. None of us were very hungry, so we left with over half a pizza. Since S's car was full of boys and lightbulb paraphernalia, I got the pizza. Not wanting to smell it all the way home, I put it in the truck. Doesn't everyone keep their pizza in their trunk?
So the next morning, I open the garage door, step into the garage, and -- well, you guessed it -- eau-de-pizza. Pizza smell everywhere. It permeated the garage and filled up my car. It took a couple of days for it to finally be gone.
Have you ever stood near the corner of Washington Avenue and Fourteenth Street West? On that corner is Heiner's Bakery. I had lunch in the west end on Friday, and just stood there, enjoying the smell of baking bread carried through the air. Fantastic (Much better than pizza!)!
During the Emmaus hour of the prayer vigil, Linda asked God to make His presence so known during the Easter service that it would be (and I may have the wording of this wrong) like a fragrance in the sanctuary.
And then today I found this verse from 2 Corinthians 2:
For we are to God the aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing. (NIV; Verse 15)
What does it mean to be the "aroma of Christ?"
- Smell is difficult to ignore. We can close our eyes to avoid seeing something, or easily avoid the taste of something. Put your hands over your ears to ignore a sound and to keep your hands from touching something. If we try to avoid a smell, we have to stop breathing. Living and breathing is linked to smell. We need to convince people that knowing God is linked to true life.
- We can differentiate about 10,000 different smells. Our smell "resolution" is very high. If we pay attention, we can notice all of the different aromas of God. If we are careful, we can represent to people all aspects of God.
- People recall smells with 65% accuracy after a year; we can make God unforgettable to people if we try.
- We can smell "directionally." Isn't that a strange concept? But when you think about it, it only means that we can detect the source of an odor. By being the aroma of Christ, we can lead people to God.
I think I'm probably stretching the metaphor a bit, but when you stand near the bakery, and think how the smell of baking bread can envelope you, then Linda's prayer makes a whole lot of sense. May God's presence be as noticable as the aroma of baking bread, and may we be the aroma of Christ to those around us.