What we do to smell good! This is from April 6, 2014.
My wonderful sister-in-law, Karen, wife of my brother, Scott, has given me cologne for Christmas a number of times in recent years. Karen is a thoughtful and inspired shopper and I am certain she gets terrific deals on making me smell good. Over the past several years, Karen has graciously presented me with various brands under the Christmas tree: Lucky You, Curve (For Men), Guess. This past December, her latest entry was Usher, posted above. From a website, I discovered Usher is a blend of sea water, nutmeg, bay leaf, basil, artemisia and more and claims Usher is perfect for almost any occasion. I've scratched my head wondering what occasion it might not be good for but to no avail. Nevertheless, my players tell me I smell good in the morning when we stack it up to pray after practice so we can scratch that off the list.
Well, tomorrow morning they are going to have to get used to me and my Lucky You fragrance. Before worship this morning, I went swimming at Chancellor's, my fitness club. After I got out of the shower and toweled off, I grabbed an apple out of my Nike bag as a post workout snack. Oddly, it was wet and I did not remember washing it before I left my apartment. Even more odd, it smelled suspiciously like my Usher cologne, which happened to be in the same compartment in the gym bag! I opened the bag and my 90% full Usher bottle had lost its spray nozzle and was empty. I was heartbroken. (Truthfully, I haven't had the best of luck with Karen's gifts. Several years ago, I dropped a bottle of Lucky You in that same locker room and it broke. Several years before that, all my luggage was stolen in Honduras on a mission trip and still another bottle of Lucky You was lost!) Oh well, I got enough by shaking the bottle so I smelled awesome at service and I still have a backup with the Lucky You bottle so all is not lost!
Interestingly, I used cologne as a reference in class this past week. We spoke of how in the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus taught we should be discreet or subtle in how we give/fast/pray. As an opposite example, I asked the girls how many middle school boys use too much cologne after PE. The answer- all of them. I would not be shocked to to find out that some pre and barely teen young men use 1/2 bottle of AXE after basketball or football practice or PE. It is just overpowering at times when just a little bit would more than suffice. Paul speaks of the concept of fragrance and believers in 2 Corinthians 2, verses 14-16:
14 But thanks be to God, who always leads us as captives in Christ’s triumphal procession and uses us to spread the aroma of the knowledge of him everywhere. 15 For we are to God the pleasing aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing. 16 To the one we are an aroma that brings death; to the other, an aroma that brings life.
What do we smell like in the world? I would guess that Karen picks scents for me that she likes- it just happens we share the same taste! How does the world smell me, though, as a follower of Christ? Does my walk bring the fragrance of life or does my hypocrisy reek of death? Only I can control that. Tonight at our evening service, Dave Yasko had this gem in his sermon:
"I can't think of anything better than smelling good to God."
I really like that point! As you might guess, I was cologne-free as I sat in the pews and listened to Dave and I even led the opening prayer and no one complained. But, I do know this- my Honda Fit still smells like Usher almost ten hours after I removed the duffel bag from my car. Maybe my next passenger will be impressed!
Applicable quote of the day:
I think it's interesting that 'cologne' rhymes with 'alone.'
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