Photo: Brian Averill

Aroma… by JW Kaiser

Surfing hits you with all the senses. The sound of the ocean’s roar, the sight of the sun dancing off green walls of water, the feel of cool water that hits as you dive under the first set of the morning or gliding high in the pocket of a racing wave, all make us come alive in waves that only surfing can. What about the sense of smell? When you smell sunscreen, wax, or neoprene, or even the smell of fuel as you crank up a boat heading for a surf at a nearby island or reef pass… these smells can bring back a rush of euphoric bliss from past surfing memories.

The Apostle Paul wrote to the Christ followers that lived in a coastal beach town call Corinth that they would be the “pleasing aroma of Christ” to God. He used this word “aroma” other times as well. He was probably referring to the incense that the Romans paraded around with when they were victorious in battles. To the victors, it must have smelled great because they associated the aroma of the incense with victory. Paul was making a point: God doesn’t see us as shameful sinners unworthy of love. Rather, God sees us as victorious in Christ and this “aroma” is filled will thoughts of love and admiration for us.

As there are many smells associated with surfing that bring a flood of great memories, there are much more profound feelings that your Heavenly Father has for you when he senses the “aroma of Christ” in us. Next time you are lathering on the sunscreen for a hot summer day and are flooded with childhood memories of surfing with your best friends just based on the scent of the sunscreen, remember how you are the “aroma of Christ” to God and hopefully to those around you.

“… and walk in love, just as Christ also loved you and gave Himself up for us, an offering and a sacrifice of God as a fragrant aroma.” Ephesians 5:2