How do you smell

As seen in the HEARTbeat and the Village Voice

“How Do You Smell?”


            If you have been following my articles, you’ll know I can come up with some odd titles, and then somehow tie them back to our daily walk with Christ.  This one is no different, so just hang on and enjoy the thought.

            Did you know the strongest memory traces are set up by our sense of smell?  It’s true.  I can remember at the age of 12 walking into the basement of an 80-year old house my Mother and Father had just purchased.  The house had belonged to my maternal great-great uncle.  He had migrated from Germany and enjoyed growing grapes and making his own wine in the basement.  The musty smell of the basement hit my nose the first time I walked into it.

            Over twenty years later I took a tour of the Wiederkehr wine cellars near Altus, Arkansas.  The tour group walked into their aging room in the basement of the facility and the musty smell immediately took me back to the moment I walked into the dark, damp basement of my parents’ home.

            You may have experienced something very similar.  Maybe it’s the cologne of an old boyfriend or maybe the perfume of a college girlfriend.  Just detecting a small amount of the smell reminds you of the person – maybe in a good way or not-so-good way!  It works the same with food, materials, liquids, and such.  The chemical memory trace set by smells is very strong indeed.

            Which brings me back to the question inherent in the title, “How do you smell?”  We exude chemicals out of our body by way of sweat, pheromones, etc.  These pheromones are can attract people or put them off.  When we are in good moods, our subconscious, undetectable pheromones leave a good memory trace of our interaction with others, which works conversely with bad interactions.  But I must ask, do we exude the Holy Spirit?

            I propose God created us very meticulously.  He knitted us together with very specific needs and desires, most of which are desire to not only have a relationship with Him, but an empty place at birth to one day, by our own choice, have the Holy Spirit come and reside in us.  It is the “Most Holy Place” in us.  But do you think the Holy Spirit stays all bottled up in there, never to make His presence known?  I obvious answer is, “No!”

            People can tell just by our walk, our countenance, our speech, and certainly our demeanor.  We exude not only who we are, but as a friend of mine used to say, “Whose we are.”  The Holy Spirit pours out of our mouths in our speech, in our face through our expressions, in the assuredness with the way we walk, and even the thoughts we think.

            Our God knows our hearts, our minds, our intentions, our needs, and everything else about us because His Holy Spirit resides in us and communicates with the Him even before we know things ourselves.  What an advocate to have!

            So, I must ask you this:  Do you smell like a Christian in your daily walk?  If not, a healthy scrubbing with scripture can bring your Holy odor right back!


  Mountainside Church · 301 Elcano Drive
Hot Springs Village · AR 71909

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