It was a day like any other. I sat at my usual seat, in my usual cafe, surrounded by the aroma of freshly ground coffee beans and sugary-sweet cinnamon bagels toasted to golden perfection.
And then he walked through the door, and everything changed.
Not so fast, this grand entrance had nothing to do with dashing good looks. It had everything to do with the cologne wafting through the door as he entered, announcing his arrival.
Gone was the enticing scent of cinnamon. The coffee bean aroma became, in an instant, utterly undetectable. Suddenly my nose came under a full-blown fragrance assault.
I tried to hold back my obvious repulsion to the offending onslaught of the evil cologne bottle. I thought about coffee. I thought about the baking of pecan rolls and freshly baked bread. I tried my hardest not to think about perfume, Ax and the fragrant cologne counter at Macy's. But no matter how hard I tried, my mind simply couldn't overcome the eau du toilette.
Fighting the temptation to plug my nose, a lesson in perfect perfume application began to take shape. I've never been a regular fragrance spritzer, at least not in the traditional sense. But there is an aroma I should be exuding every day, in every situation. The aroma of Christ.
Wearing the pleasing aroma of Christ doesn't require a glass bottle and a simple spirtz on the wrist and neck. To put on Christ takes a whole different process of application.
It all starts with the washing. Naturally, my aroma is one spoiled by sin and shame. It stinks worse than rotten fish and offends infinitely more than overly applied cologne. I need to be cleansed by the blood of Jesus. The moment I surrender and submit to Christ He breaks out holy scrub brushes and shampoos, immediately washing away all of my impurities, removing the filth of my guilty transgressions.
Then comes the application of the sweet aroma of His Spirit. God, with His expert hand, perfectly applies the pleasing fruits of His goodness. Grace, love and mercy are poured into my heart so that they will be detectable in all of my comings and goings. The indwelling of the most precious perfume is administered in such a way that it wafts into the air with heavenly beauty, spreading the testimony of redemption and salvation.
Apart from Christ my aroma is doomed to spoil my witness. Just as an overly applied bottle of cologne stings the nose, my sinful stench will offend the heart of God.
But I can be made clean. By the grace of God I can be made to beautiful and fragrant aroma of Christ.