It is spring. As we are winding down our celebration of Easter, as we congratulate college graduates and anticipate honoring our high school graduates, as we look forward to summer, there is something else happening that always makes me smile. The lilacs are blooming. Growing up we had four large lilac bushes of varying colors and I loved the smell of the world when I was near to them.
To me, the aroma of lilacs is a kiss of spring. It is a fresh and sweet fragrance that acts like a little hug when I am near, more so when the winds is blowing and you get the fragrance on the air. As followers of Jesus, we are called to be the “aroma of Christ” and lilac season reminds me of that. As I delight in the smell of lilacs, I am reminded that my life needs to bring the love of Jesus to others in ways just as subtle or in your face as lilacs.
As followers of Jesus there are times when we gather with brothers and sisters to be the presence of God’s love to others. Providing a meal at Mercy Mission House, collecting canned goods, helping someone with yard work or painting, there are many ways we can be a big breath of Jesus’ aroma to those around us. Other times we can be the fragrance on the wind, bringing kindness to a checker at the store, being patient, even when we have been waiting a long time, you name it. In all those things, someone might just catch the whiff of God’s love. It might make their day. That’s what we get to do every day.
The downside to lilac season, for me, is that it doesn’t ever last long enough. I keep the fragrance in my heart and wait for next year. For us, for those called to bring the aroma of Jesus’ love to the world, our season never ends. We get to bring that lovely fragrance of God’s grace all summer, into autumn, though the winter right back to spring, and lilac season.
May your days be filled with joy as we all carry with us the aroma of Jesus’ love. Share that aroma with all around you. There is nothing more wonderful than that.
The writer is the pastor at St. John’s Lutheran Church, 120 W. St., Sidney.