I have a friend, Dee Dee, who lives in the NC hills. Actually, a hollow. When introducing me to her several years ago, Beth used the words prayer warrior. Now I know why.
Many a day, Dee Dee has headed outdoors to her prayer bush on my behalf or that of my family. At times she places a ribbon on the bush as a reminder of a particular request. I’m hoping she’ll blog in more detail about her special place of prayer in the near future.
While a bush itself holds nothing special when it comes to prayer, I took two things into consideration when picking mine out:
I searched for an evergreen as a reminder that Jesus always lives to intercede for me. (Therefore he is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them. Hebrews 7:25). And unlike deciduous shrubs, evergreens remain the same regardless of the season. (Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever. Hebrews 13:8)
Fragrance was a must. Let my prayer be counted as incense before you,and the lifting up of my hands as the evening sacrifice! Psalm 141:2
The winner? A four-year old Fragrant Tea Olive. It just so happens to be one of my favorite shrubs (which explains why I’ve planted 6+ in our yard.) It’s not the prettiest shrub in my yard, but then again, neither are my prayers. They’re simple, not eloquent or poetic, just as my Father desires.
So, how about you? I’d love to hear one of your favorite places to pray and/or what shrub you would choose from your yard to use as your prayer bush.
Our lives are a Christ-like fragrance rising up to God. But this
fragrance is perceived differently by those who are being saved and by
those who are perishing. 2 Corinthians 2:15
For we are a fragrance of Christ to God among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing… 2 Corinthians 2:15 NASB
If you’ve read my blog over the years you know my Grandmother Knighton and I shared a love for heirloom plants, such as the early 1900’s jonquil above. According to her, heirloom flowers have a stronger scent than some of the more modern varieties. I suppose that could be debated but one thing is for certain:
No one had to tell
the jonquil treading water in my vintage glassware to release its
primitive perfume. It couldn’t do otherwise!
I think of Jesus and how the fragrance of heaven’s glory exuded from everything He said and did, drawing men, women, and children near to His Father.
When I lowered the polka dotted glassware to my two-year-old granddaughter’s level, she drew closer. A smile erupted as she inhaled deeply,
which led to a hearty, “Mmmmm!” Before I could lift the glass back
to its place on the windowsill she reached out, wanting one more whiff of loveliness.
When the living Spirit indwells, one can’t help but release His sweet aroma as it knows no bounds, emitting the character of Christ through every pore of our being—pleasing the Father, and ushering the presence of His love to mankind.
Though I falter, my greatest desire is the fragrance of Christ’s presence to be released through every aspect of my life. As ink flows to pen, I pray He will be glorified in every blog post, article, journal entry, poem, etc.
I’d love for you to join me on this NEW journey as we discover fresh and creative ways to become more intentional in seeing Jesus in the details of our ordinary days. Each week, posts will highlight specific ways to stir the sweet aroma of Christ through prayer, Scripture-based tea gatherings, hospitality ideas, and serendipitous moments. At times, you’ll also meet guest bloggers whose presence is like a breath of something beautiful for God.
“The apostle wished that his life might be a sweet perfume, floating on
the air, reminding me, and above all reminding God, of Christ.” (Meyer)
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I sat on the comfy pew only to have my head hijacked by a headlock. The culprit wasn’t a person, but an allergen.
Only a couple of handshakes—that’s all it took to identify the problem: cigarette smoke—something I’m highly allergic to and the reason we rarely dine in restaurants that allow it.
Sitting nearby was a large group of men from a local missions home who are picked up every Sunday for Bible study, worship, and much needed encouragement.
So what’s a little smoke, right?
That was the question that attempted to budge its way through the stuffiness of my head but instead, was quickly answered by truth from God’s Word:
Exodus 29:18 Then burn the entire ram on the altar. It is a burnt offering to the LORD, a pleasing aroma, an offering made to the LORD by fire.
Just as burnt offerings were voluntary in the Old Testament, so was the decision made by these men to worship the Lord today. God didn’t smell the stench of their cigarettes, only the sweet aroma of their love and obedience to Him.
So, what’s a little headache?
Thank You, sweet Jesus.
2 Corinthians 2:15 For we are to God the aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing.
–image courtesy of Worship Academy
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