Perfume is an interesting thing… Some of us wear it, others bathe in it and waft wherever they go, and still others don’t believe in wearing it at all.
We may wear perfumes for different reasons too. Sometimes we spray on a little extra perfume to cover up a bad scent, other times we want that special someone to lean in close and catch a whiff of something special, we might be trying to keep up with the latest fashions by wearing the latest perfume, or maybe we just enjoy the smell of it. Perfume may also be used as a way to catch the attention of someone we like.
I bought my Mum a “Chemical Maze” book for Christmas, and she started to analyse all of the beauty products within our house – including some perfumes that she and I had. It was an eye-opening experience for both of us, as we realised that most commercial perfumes are made up of nice-smelling chemicals (some harmful, some not-so-harmful). They were right when they called perfumes “poison”, and the sentiment “eu de toilette” is a good statement, as I think it might be a good idea to pour most commercial perfumes down the toilet! :) So I set to work; I started researching online for organic, natural perfume brands, and found that although they were good, they were mighty expensive! One company was charging $11 per 1ml of perfume!
“Well”, I decided, “if that’s how it’s going to be, I will make my own!” Mum and I went on a mission to purchase essential oils that we liked, as well as sweet almond oil to act as a base. It was a rather smelly experience, and we must have sniffed over 30-40 different smells! But we found some really beautiful scents and blends that we liked.
We brought our bounty home, and I set to work making solid perfumes – with a mixture of bees wax, almond oil and essential oils, and some liquid oil perfumes as well.
I was going to smell good no matter what!!! The essential oils mingled together to create aromatic scents; orange, clove, jasmine, cinnamon…. mmmmmmm. The kitchen was transformed into a sweet-smelling laboratory – and it was fun! Then I had the excitement of trying out the finished products, and saying to my brothers; “smell this! How does it smell?”
“Its smelly”, said one of my brothers. Hmmm… hopefully he meant in a nice way…
And after wafting around in my new organic scents, it got me thinking – I might smell alright on the outside, but what about my inside? My attitude? The way I treat others? Is that nice-smelling?
Sometimes we focus so much attention on the outward appearance and smelling good on the outside, that we neglect the most important thing of all; our character.
In Ephesians 5:2, Paul gives us the following challenge, “And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma”.
Jesus gave Himself fully to God in the way He acted and in the way He loved and served those around Him. He was the ultimate sacrifice in that all that He did gave off a sweet-smelling aroma that was pleasing to God. The gift that He gave, when He died in our place, for our sin, was the sweetest-smelling gift of all! The verse before this one (Ephesians 5:1) says that we should be, “imitators of God as dear children”. Our lives should be modelled after His life. And I truly believe that if we spend quality time with God, and spend time serving and loving other people, in His strength, we will start to smell like Him. Just imagine that you are spending time with someone who is wearing a strong perfume, if you spend enough time with them, you will start to smell like them. It’s the same with God.
Gods perfume is different to ours. Our perfume may seem good on the outside; it may be packed nicely and look all pretty, but underneath it is full of chemicals that are harmful, such as: selfish pride, anger, hate, and all of things that God is not. His perfume is the essence of love (true and real love). And the more we get to know Him; the more we spend time with Him, and the more we serve Him, the more we will smell like Him, so that others can see Jesus in our lives, more than they see us.
Now that’s the kind of perfume I want! I want the real deal, so that I can smell good from the inside out! How do you want to smell today?