Wednesday, July 6, 2016



Isn’t that an odd title for a blog post?  I looked up Stench on for an exact meaning – a very bad smell (no kidding!) or stink!  

remember this one?  we found him sometime this year . . .the original church mouse!
The dictionary examples using stench in a sentence were “the stench of rotting meat” and “we finally discovered the dead rat that was causing the stench in the basement.”  I could write the example sentence, “Upon opening my office door today, the stench of dead mouse assaulted my senses.”  (really – once again – but we can’t find him - I've been liberally sprinkling Breathe Easier Essential Oil all around my office . . .all day!)

I’ve been thinking about the word “stench” a lot lately.  I know that is weird but since I have a hound dog nose . . .if there is a smell (or stench) around, I’m going to smell it. (this can be a problem!!)

What I’ve really been thinking about is the stench of sin in my life.  There are those things that I continually do that I don’t want to do (one of our pastors read that scripture to us in chapel yesterday).  I’m just like Paul.

Romans 7:15 . . . I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.

So I sin . . .and it stinks.  The stench of sin . . .

Quite a few things have a very bad smell (in my opinion).  Perfumes and colognes really bother my allergies.  I would love to live in a “fake scent free” zone but alas, that is probably not going to happen.  A few years ago, a man was in the church office seeking assistance.  He hugged me (which was weird in and of itself . . and kissed me!!! even weirder – he was in my space!!  Abort abort abort – he was in my space!!).  He hugged me and he smelled just like an evergreen air freshener that hangs in a car (not my car!!).  All afternoon, I smelled like a fake evergreen forest.  I couldn't wash the scent away until I got home.

Someone else hugged me recently and left a stench upon my skin.  I went into the bathroom and tried to scrub it off.  I could still smell it.  The stench was on my clothes.  It was in my nose.  It was in my mouth (really yucky smells can do that!!).  The stench was ON me.  I was stuck with the stench!
Sin is that way.  It hangs around.  It haunts us.  The scent sometimes bothers us but we (I do!) keep on sinning anyway.  The sin might be gossip (though I am trying to do a lot less of this because it always comes back to bite me in the butt!).  The sin might be gluttony.  The sin might be negativity (in my book – that can be a sin . . .not sure about God’s thoughts on that!).  The sin might be ingratitude.  The sin could be infidelity or pornography or lying.  Whatever your sin(s) is/are, sin stinks and we can’t just grab a damp paper towel and wash it off.

I do know about a powerful cleaning agent.  I am so thankful for God’s grace.  His grace is like the best cleaning product around.  It pours over us and around us and washes away that stench of sin.  When I was a little kid my mom would scrub on the inside of my elbows – you know -- in that little crease because dirt liked to hide there.  She would scrub my knees (they were so tan that they looked dirty!).  She would scrub my sisters and me until we were clean.  God’s grace is even better than that.  God’s grace POURS over us and washes away the stench of sin.

Stench?  I don't smell it anymore.  I love that sweet smell of God’s grace.  How about you?

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