Yesterday, for the first time since I knew I was pregnant with Caleb, I donned my running shoes and miserably plodded jogged to the river, about a half mile down the road. My next goal will be to run all the way back, too. Smirk. As I went, I couldn’t help but notice what an absolutely beautiful day it was, with sky that had me wishing for the time to mix that exact gumball blue color with my paints, and white clouds that weren’t really white, but full of faint oranges and rosy hues, with a hint of grey. And the smells- pollen, dried leaves, corn baking on its stalk (thank goodness I don’t have allergies)- would waft by on the breeze.
I love, love, love the smell of fall. It feels so good to be outside on those days that aren’t too hot, and aren’t too cold, and the air is so crisp and clear. Ironically, the smells of this season are those of dying things, things that are on their way out of this world, things that are preparing for hibernation. So, yeah, that makes me a little strange to enjoy that smell so much, but it shouldn’t surprise anyone that I am strange like this by now.
I thought of that smell, and how it pleases me, even though it means death for something beautiful. But if the plant didn’t die, we could not experience new life come forth from it in the spring, and enjoy that beauty, as well. In the Old Testament, the Israelites were to acknowledge their need of Jesus’ sacrificial death by continually presenting various sacrifices and burnt offerings to God. The fragrance of an offering given in the correct way was said to have “an aroma pleasing to Him”. I think the aroma pleased Him so much because it reinforced the idea that eventually through His death would come life. Through Him being broken, we could be made whole. By His offering, God could welcome us into eternal glory and triumph over death. These were my thoughts as I drank in the beauty of one of the first fall days of this year.God’s creation loudly declares His glory, to anyone who’ll listen. Even dead leaves and drying corn stalks rustle their praise.
The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament shows His handiwork. Psalm 19:1
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. Exodus 29:18
But thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and manifests through us the sweet aroma of the knowledge of Him in every place. 2 Corinthians 2:14