"For we are to God the fragrance of Christ among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing".
- 2 Corinthians 2: 15 (NKJV)
When I was a boy of about 10 years old, our neighborhood was expanding. A farm about two blocks away from our house had been sold and developers were building new homes on what had been farmland.
As those new homes were built the contractors moved further away from our neighborhood but they left behind a big mound of dirt which the local teenage boys made into a clubhouse.
We elementary age kids were not allowed in that clubhouse of dirt. I looked up to most of those teenage boys and wanted to be like them so I wanted to be in their club. Kids were not allowed. One day my friends and I noticed the teenagers weren't around so we made sure the coast was clear and went inside the clubhouse mound of dirt.
What I saw inside changed the way I interacted with those boys afterwards. There were certain magazines and beer bottles scattered all over the place and that cool club I had so desperately wanted to be a part of - suddenly began to stink.
It does something to you when the glow which seems to surround our idols is replaced with a foul smelling stench. Scripture says a lot about character, it also has quite a bit to say about things, places and the actions of people being either a sweet-smelling aroma to God or a stench in His nostrils.
For instance, worship, prayer and faith are sweet-smelling aromas before God. As are serving God over self, promoting good, speaking truth, edifying others, being loyal and making friends based on their character rather than their popularity - all these are sweet-smelling aromas before God.
My friends, you and I are given the choice of whether we are a sweet-smelling aroma to God or a stench in His nostrils. The determining factor is the impact Jesus Christ is given in our lives which will be displayed in our character.