The fragrance of Christ

I’ve been running for four months now, so I’ve had time to test out a number of routes. My favorite is a two-mile loop that takes me around a lake, through a park and back home again.

Along this route there’s one yard with a wisteria vine growing over the fence. It smells heavenly. I look forward to that scent every time I pass by.

Today was no exception. But as I approached the vine-covered fence, it wasn’t the sweet fragrance of wisteria that rushed to meet me. No, what I smelled this morning was smoke. Somewhere, nearby, there was a fire. And the smell of smoke permeated the air, overpowering every other scent.

My thoughts flew to the wildfires in Colorado. Several literary folks whose blogs I read (Rachelle Gardner, Beth Vogt) posted pictures of the devastating fires. The blaze and the smoke appear overwhelming. The fury of the flames destroyed homes, disrupted lives and displaced thousands of people.

It’s easy to imagine that in the midst of such chaos, thoughts of God’s sovereignty don’t come easy.

But here’s the thing: He’s still in control.

It wasn’t until I was right next to the wisteria vine, with my face practically pressed up in it, that I finally smelled the plant. The smoke was that strong.

Sometimes life is like that, too. When the flames, real or circumstantial, rage around us, the only thing we can do is draw nearer to God. We catch his aroma, reassured that He’s still there.

But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumphal procession in Christ and through us spreads everywhere the fragrance of the knowledge of Him. For we are to God the aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing. 2 Corinthians 2:14, 15

My thoughts and prayers are with those affected by the wildfires.

Let’s talk: Have you or your loved ones been affected by the fires? Have there been any circumstances in which you’ve seen God’s hand at work?

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