Joan Reynolds

Real Faith, Real Life & Real Joy

We Are A Fragrance!


Everyday as I walk Gypsy to the ocean, both morning and evening, I pass a place where there is the most beautiful aroma. Where I notice it most is, oddly enough, right in front of a commercial garbage bin in front of some beautiful condos overlooking the Pacific.

I have walked down that same street twice a day for almost three months and never failed to detect the hint of it. I have brought a friend down who couldn’t smell it at all. I keep meaning to bring another friend, but actually, I really don’t care if anyone confirms it. I have gone to the nurseries in town and tried to locate a plant that gave off such a sweet fragrance (without my touching the leaves) but have come up short. No one knows of anything that would be sweet, not bitter, and yet give off the scent I am describing to them.

I merely thought it would be nice to plant under my bedroom window, where the smell of dog urine has occasionally wafted in unexpectedly during the night. I love that smell that I cannot replicate! Perhaps there is a good reason for that. It really encourages me to take that walk every day, and that is good for my health and my dog. It also inspires me to think deeper about the things of God.

He says in 2 Cor 14-16 that …”we are to God the aroma of Christ”….spreading everywhere the fragrance of the knowledge of him. The fragrance of life. Can it be bottled and sold? No. Can I replicate that perfume I smell? Perhaps not.

Someone said it was probably a laundry sheet. Not at the times and days I pass by, it is too consistently the same. And it is a mix, smelling to the best of my ability to detect, rosemary, mint, and perhaps a third herb, but nothing bitter or too sweet. There is no sign of any of these plants growing anywhere on the street.

I have a new grandchild who, without any effort on her part,  summons up memories of my own children at the tender early stages of their lives. I remember the smell of them being so amazingly sweet. The back of their necks particularly held their fragrance as they got a little older. Not only did I love being in their presence, but I adored the aroma that was uniquely theirs.

I believe we are indeed a fragrance to God, and that He adores the aroma of us. Everyday I am reminded in the most uplifting way that where I expect to smell the scent of garbage, I am completely caught off guard by this wonderful scent. It is a lesson I hope that I do not forget, even if the aroma should disappear. Where else in my life might I be seeing garbage that may well be an amazing fragrance to God?

3 Comments to

“We Are A Fragrance!”

  1. Avatar October 14th, 2011 at 2:48 pm Sherri Robinson Says:

    That’s awesome Joan!

  2. Avatar June 20th, 2013 at 6:15 am Cedric Sims Says:

    The unseen, insuppressible, pervasive influence, like the odor of a precious perfume, goes forth from the lives of those who have the grace of Christ in them. The fragrance comes from Christ because He alone is the source. We are the means of spreading the knowledge of Christ. Lost sinners see the change in us and they want to know what is that I smell about your life. What makes you different from me? We can only respond, it is Christ in me. We are the perfume Christ has produced. We are filled with Him. Christ Himself is the sweet aroma which exhales in our character and work. The life of the believer proceeds from God and the saving work of Christ. We are the bearers of the fragrance of Christ.

  3. Avatar June 20th, 2013 at 11:11 am Joan Says:

    Thank you Cedric,
    I often feel things that I put into words I am comfortable with, but they are far from eloquent. I just this morning wrote (at 6:15 am) to a
    potential Christian boss where I had been training for two days, that I could not work there because of the negative, blaming, shaming attitude that starts at the
    top and pervades the entire building. While the owner speaks of loving the Lord, the employees are beaten down verbally at every turn. God sent me there, but told me to leave two days later. I didn’t want to say anything, but it seems He sent me as a messenger, not something I enjoy when it is not Good News. I was in effect saying that people will know a Christian business by its fruit and much of that is picked up by observing and, as you reminded me,
    smelling the fragrance all around. If it is not there, something stinks and one really doesn’t want to put Christ’s name on that!
    I didn’t use those words, and I even felt out of my element to be so bold to try and explain it, but I did. I knew I was supposed to but I still didn’t like hitting the send button. It was only after I did that I saw your comment for approval in my inbox. I thank you, and more than that, I thank God, for sending me this email at that exact moment, in response to a post written over a year ago. Most responses are immediate and come from family and friends or later from some weird encryption actually trying to sell Viagra from my site, so I really appreciate not only what you said but God’s perfect timing in my life. I recognize Him in both.
    I have hardly posted anything in the past two years, so it is quite amazing but then so like God, to reach in and grab that which could only be known by Him to confirm and uplift those who love and follow Him. Thank you for being His messenger to me.

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