Images communicate powerfully. Jeremiah asked, Can a leopard change his spots? The image illustrates the question, Can evil change itself to good?
You can’t change what you are. And if you are looking for joy in life, stop trying! Are you confused yet? Don’t be. Just keep going!
Scent: A Rose By Any Other Name
I was born in West Texas. After moving to the Dallas/Ft. Worth Metroplex we made many trips back west. And that meant driving through some oilfields. Those fields around Midland and Odessa have a certain scent. The oil producers say, It smells like money!
My Dad was called to serve a church in Louisiana. And that required us to travel through East Texas in order to visit him. We encountered another unique scent: paper mills. The owners and workers say, It smells like money!
Around North Alabama there are a number of poultry farmers. At my house, if the summer winds are coming from the right direction, it’s easy to know a chicken house isn’t far away. You guessed it! They say: It smells like money!
What’s that got to do with you?
Can’t Change Your Scent Or Your Spots
2 Corinthians 2:15 doesn’t mention spots. But like the leopard’s spots, there is something about yourself you can’t change. Oil, paper mills, and poultry farms are what they are. The associated ‘aromas’ are just part of the package.
Christians are the same way! Jesus was sent from God to provide salvation. Those who experience His salvation are then sent to share it with others. Jesus said,
As the Father sent Me, so send I you.
2 Corinthians 2 tells us those who are sent have a scent! And that scent is part of the package – just like oil, paper mills, and poultry farms. The problem comes when we try to fight it! Here is the truth:
But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and manifests through us the sweet aroma of the knowledge of Him in every place. For we are a fragrance of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing; to the one an aroma from death to death, to the other an aroma from life to life.
Scent of the Sent
It’s inescapable. We have a scent. And Jesus already told us the world hated Him so it will hate us. So get used to the idea. Pleasing everyone isn’t possible (see 2 Corinthians 2!) and trying will only rob you of your joy. What joy? Being a sweet aroma to our Lord. Live for Him. If the petals of your life smell sweet to Him, rest assured some will think you smell like a weed! So remember, Blessed are you when men speak evil of you for His sake. Rejoice! That’s the way they treated the prophets before you. Own your scent!
Soli Deo Gloria!