A few years ago, my husband and I visited an elderly woman, who is a longstanding friend of his parents.
We’d recently learned that her nephew had died suddenly, whilst out jogging. He was not yet 50yrs old and left behind a wife and two children.
As I glanced around her spick and span sitting room, I noted a vase of beautiful white lilies. Some flowers had opened whilst others were still in bud. I soon became aware of an overpowering but beautiful fragrance emanating from these flowers.
The next day, as the memory of these lilies and their gorgeous fragrance came back to me, the scripture which speaks about the fragrance of the knowledge of Christ, also came to mind. Let’s just stop a moment and take a look at these verses:
Now thanks be to God who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and through us diffuses the fragrance of his knowledge in every place.
For we are to God the fragrance of Christ among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing.
(2 Corinthians 2:14-15 NKJV)
Now, it has long been a desire of mine that my life be fragrant with the knowledge and presence of God, as a result of my relationship with him. And if my life, my character, my speech exuded a beautiful fragrance, such as that which came from the lilies referred to above, I’d be overjoyed.
As purpose-driven achievers, we may not have yet come to the place where we can say with absolute confidence that we have fulfilled our destiny in Christ. We may even be unsure about what exactly our specific purpose is on this earth. We do know however that our general purpose is to:
- worship God,
- walk in peace and unity,
- become Christ-like,
- serve the Body of Christ with our gifts and
- share the good news of the gospel.
Going back to the vase of lilies, the fact that some buds had not yet opened, speaks to me of potential and the promise of future flowering, future fragrance.
Now whilst the buds remain unopened there can be no fragrance. I believe that the potential for Christ’s fragrance to emanate from our lives, depends upon the amount of time we spend reading, meditating upon and acting on the Word of God. As we consistently engage in these activities, our experience of God, our knowledge of Christ, increases. And so the strength and beauty of Christ’s fragrance within our lives increases.
Strangely enough, I don’t recall what the vase looked like, which had held those flowers. I could not tell you whether it was a plain porcelain affair, or a beautiful crystal container. I was captivated by the fragrance alone. It occurs to me that our friend’s vase of lilies makes a beautiful illustration of how we ought to operate in this world.
By all means we should pursue our dreams. By all means we should seek to become purpose-driven achievers. But in all our pursuing, in all our becoming, let’s not forget that our endeavours, our successes should bring glory and honour to God. Let us not forget that our aim is to draw people to the Christ within us and not focus attention upon ourselves.
Friends and followers, my prayer today is for the fragrance of the knowledge of Christ to permeate our lives in an ever-increasing measure.
Have a beautiful and blessed weekend!
Carol (aka Lady Cee)
PS: Do check out my book on Amazon – here’s the link.
CREDIT: The above CC0 image comes courtesy of Pixabay.com