Wednesday, January 4, 2006

Smelly Saints

(*First posted 1-2-05)

The Law appoints priests who have weaknesses. But God's promise, which came later than the Law, appoints his Son. And he is the perfect high priest forever. - Hebrews 7:28 (cev)

Audio Version:
this is an audio post - click to play

Have you ever burnt popcorn in your microwave? Let me tell you, it’s not a good thing.

The other night my husband tried a new brand of low-fat popcorn. He misread the instructions, and the next thing we knew, the kitchen looked like a fog had descended, and the most obnoxious odor filled the air.

I’ve tried for three days to get rid of the lingering smell. I burned candles, but the sweetness of the candles couldn’t overcome the stench. I’ve tried lemon juice, vinegar – you name it. I didn’t realize how often we use the microwave. Every time we fire up the thing, we get a fresh wave of that horrible odor.

Throughout the Old Testament, the sense of smell often refers to a sacrifice. Every day, the Temple needed to be cleansed by the burning of incense and the sacrificing of animals. The burnt offerings were referred to as a sweet fragrance in the nostrils of God.

Do you know what stinks to God? Sin. In Genesis 19:13 (nlt), the angel of the Lord said of Sodom and Gomorrah’s sin, “For we will destroy the city completely. The stench of the place has reached the LORD, and he has sent us to destroy it."

Jesus became the perfect sacrifice for our sins. His blood and God’s acceptance of it makes it possible for us to repent and be saved when we acknowledge Jesus as our Savior. “Unlike the other high priests, he does not need to offer sacrifices day after day, first for his own sins, and then for the sins of the people. He sacrificed for their sins once for all when he offered himself.”Hebrews 7:27 niv

I thought I’d tried everything to rid my house of the odor, and then my husband said, “Oh, I forgot. I laid one of the cloths I used to wipe out the microwave in the laundry room.”

The laundry room is only a few feet from the kitchen. No wonder I couldn’t get rid of the smell. When we repent, we must repent of all our sins. As burning the candles couldn’t hide the bad smell, covering up sin doesn’t hide it from God. Only when we present ourselves as living sacrifices to God will true repentance become a sweet aroma to God.

In order to completely remove the odor, my husband wants to get rid of the microwave. Aren’t you glad God didn’t just throw us out? In His love, He provided the Way to save us.

I can’t throw out an almost-perfectly good appliance. I’m much too practical for that. I hope I can save it.

Prayer: God, I thank You that Jesus sacrificed His life for me. I pray I will be a sweet smelling savor as I sacrifice my life to You. In Jesus’ Name I pray, Amen.

Click here for the beautiful lyrics of “Broken and Spilled Out,” written by Gloria Gaither and Bill George. Copyright 1984 Gaither Music Co./Yellow House Music (ASCAP)

*This devo is also on To read more, click here!


  1. I know exactly what stench you've had to live with lately. Fortunately for my family, we had an old microwave downstairs that we rarely used and that happened to be the site of our popcorn disaster. Time dissipated the smell and we didn't have to deal with it in the kitchen.

    Excellent parallels to the spiritual world. I don't have the most sensitive nose, but those verses about fragrance in the Bible have always caught my attention. I'd much rather be sending beautiful smells (like my faves: vanilla, cinnamon and roses) up to God than something like burnt popcorn!

    Hugs and fresh air,

    Becca :)

  2. As usual, I'm a day late and a dollar short. I'm just now getting around to reading some of the other devotionals and let me tell you, I'm so happy I did. I absolutely LOVE the audios. Course, I caught myself talking back to you. Hello?

    I think we've all been there with the burnt popcorn and had to out live the smell (sin). But it's possibly to move on by letting God's love for us cover/mask the sin (smell) and everything is right once again. Thanks Donna, you never cease to amaze me with your insight into God's messages for us. I'm so grateful to have your devotionals!

    Much love to you and yours in 2005,

    Queen Jaw Jaw

  3. I had this thought that the smell couldn't get rid of itself. The microwave couldn't clean itself. All it can do is surrender to your scrubbing.

    Sometimes I try to overcome sin by my sheer will and end up discouraged and a failure. Ever so slowly I'm learning that God deep cleans. He doesn't just wipe away the stain, He takes away the root cause of my sins. I'm learning to surrender and rest in His perfect ability to change me.

    thanks for the devotion, Donna. Good one.

  4. JJ, thanks for stopping by and 'talking' to me! lol!

    Yes, I'm so thankful that even though we can't cover up our sin, Jesus' blood can..and DOES! Praise the Lord!

    Janice, you sound dangerous. *g* You're right about how our mistakes teach us and make good stories. I make enough mistakes to have something to talk about for a long time! :)

    Thanks for taking time to comment! - Donna

  5. Hi Donna, Good one! You've probably got a million tips already but try this.

    If you haven't pitched the microwave yet, put a couple of spoons of baking soda in 2 cups of water and let it boil for a minute or so. Then let the oven cool down with the water still in the oven. When it's cool wipe the inside of the oven down and leave the door open for a while. I won't guarentee it will work completely but it will help. If you boil white vinegar and water that way it helps too.

    Hugs, Doris

  6. I think the vinegar might be doing the trick. I boiled a half cup vinegar with a half cup water in the microwave. I then wiped down all the sides, top, and door, and then left the cup with the mixture inside. Tonight when we came in from church, I could hardly smell the odor. Or maybe I've gotten used to it. *g* One thing's for sure - I don't want any popcorn in the near future!

    Thanks for stopping by and the tips. - Donna

  7. I really like your audio blog it is enjoyable to hear your voice giving the devotion. I liked the text version, but nothing compares to the audio. Yes microwave popcorn is a problem. I am thankful I have a setting for popcorn on my microwave. The Lord is great and I want to send a pleasing aroma to him daily.

  8. We do have a popcorn setting on our microwave, but my husband chose to ignore it. lol! Thanks for commenting on the audio. It's fun to do, but I didn't know how effective it was. I'm glad you like it.

    Thanks, Sandi, for stopping by! - Donna

  9. Hi Donna,
    Maybe we should swap microwaves as I have no sense of smell. I'm always afraid the house will burn down around me and I wont know until I feel very very hot. Thank God indeed He didn't throw us out and start again. The thought of being a sweet fragrance to God is lovely.
    Love and blessings

  10. Thanks for sharing your devotionals. What a unique way to describe smelly saints.
    The truth sure does make a person think. I loved the hint about clean up.


  11. Hey Donna, here's another thought.. sometimes something we are doing is ok, but sometimes it just takes one tiny thing to make it stink to God.. I thought of this cause Mike and I LOVE popcorn and love the smell of it - BUT.. I like to add parmesan cheese on top.. and Mike says that it stinks it up. too bad you don't want popcorn for a long time.. that was the next fellowship I was gonna arrange! ha ha. Diane W.


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