We often burn candles in our house. They look pretty and give off a nice scent or aroma. If someone walks in the house and the candle is burning, that will be the first thing they smell when they walk in. I am certain that is the picture Paul is trying to describe to us in 2 Cor. today.
Paul’s description of what we as believers are to be to our world is very easy to understand. He says we, believers, are to God the aroma of Christ. Let’s stop there; just like a pumpkin spice candle is the “aroma” of pumpkin spice on my counter, we are being told we are the “aroma” of Christ. God desires to use us in this way. When I smell pumpkin spice, I think of pumpkins and the smell of a pumpkin spice coffee. In the same way, we, God’s children, are to be the aroma of Christ. When someone encounters us, it should immediately remind them of Christ or an attribute of His.
Paul tells us who our audience for this “aroma” is as well: those who are being saved and those who are perishing. Those around us. This is our neighbors. This is the lady at the cash register in the dollar store and the drive through cashier at Taco Bell. Its the person next to your locker if they are not a believer or the neighbor in the apartment next to you. It might be your co-worker or the mailman you see everyday. It is those people who are around us every single day.
Given Paul’s description of what we are to be, you and I have to ask ourselves, are we living up to his description? When I interacted with the pool people today, did they get a glimpse of Christ? When you switched classes today-did you hold your tongue from commenting negatively about a teacher to your friend? When you walked in to work today, did you say something encouraging? When we are out walking and see friends, do we genuinely listen when they answer the question “how are you” and then offer to genuinely pray for them if they are going through a difficult time? Are people reminded of Christ today when they encounter us? Are we living up to Paul’s description of being the aroma of Christ where we are right now? What if yours is the only aroma of Christ they someone may ever get and without it, they will perish? Consider at least one unbeliever you or I encountered today and think through if we represented Christ well in that interaction or if perhaps, we could do a better job “burning brightly” for Him! Let’s pray we would all be that pleasant aroma of Christ for all those around us each and every day!