Senses & Lent: Something smells gooooood

Welcome to Week 3: "Wow, something smells good in here!!"

This week we're looking at our noses - yup, try not to get cross eyed! We're leaping (sorry, couldn't resist...) into week 3 of using our senses to help us focus our minds and hearts on Jesus this Lent.

Included is:

🌹 a song you might want to pop on

🌹 a Bible verse

🌹 a short thought to help us seek Jesus through our sense of smell

🌹 an activity (or you can cheat this week 😉)

...all designed to draw us into a closer walk with Jesus this Lent.

(In case the concept of the 5 senses is ringing a bell - yes, it was the theme for the 2022 Creative Christianity Summit! Everything you need through Lent is going to be here on the blog, don’t panic.

However if you paid for the 2022 Creative Christianity Summit, can we encourage you to dip back into it? Even if you don’t have time to listen to all the sessions, it’s worth popping on the worship sessions with Lou & Nathan Fellingham.)

Grace & Glory Freesia Candle | Soy Wax Candle by Whitehouse Collection | Cheerfully Given - Christian Gifts UK

Suggested worship song/hymn: Breathe

Another Lou Fellingham favourite! Today we recommend listening to:

🌹 Breathe (Youtube link here)

(You can also find this song in your usual streaming places. In fact, can you recommend a different hymn or song that fits with today's sense?)

Red Line

"Wow, something smells amazing in here!"

Was anyone around when Menekse started a not-so-mini debate on Facebook about how Jesus will smell of cinnamon when He comes back?! (Psalm 45:8 if you want to check it out - there's a lovely range of spices and scents listed there, in case cinnamon isn't your thing 😉).


If the Gospels came with scratch ‘n sniff pads, you probably wouldn’t want to scratch too many of them. A stable - depends on your farmyard tolerance, a group of people traveling around in a hot climate - maybe not the most refreshing smell, Jeremiah being thrown into a well - it’s not going to smell pleasant down the bottom there!

But Mary pouring a pint of pure nard over Jesus’ feet. That would be one worth ‘smelling in’ on. A deep earthy, woody and musky scent permeating the entire house. There was no way you’d miss it. You’d walk in the doorway and stop and smell it. It wouldn’t be a smell you’d know intimately given how expensive it was so maybe it would take a while to realise what it was.

John 12:3: Mary took about a pint of pure nard, an expensive perfume; she poured it on Jesus' feet and wiped his feet with her hair. And the house was filled with the fragrance of the perfume.

You’d probably choose to stop and inhale the rich fragrance. Sometimes we can read the Bible and forget the sheer depth of physical senses that are displayed there.

Perhaps even Heaven can feel a bit 2D when we forget how vibrant it is. Heaven is not a place of dulled senses and just living on a cloud. The Temple was to be a representation of it and we know how rich of smell, colour, and music the Temple was designed to be.

Here are some scents used and mentioned in the Bible:

  • Myrrh was given at Christ's birth as a reminder of His death and is one of the spices Jesus’ body was wrapped with before being laid in the tomb (John 19:39)

  • Cinnamon was included in the anointing oil for priests, reminding us Jesus is our high priest and is right at this very moment interceding for us in Heaven (Exodus 30:22-30)

  • Frankincense is mentioned long before the Christmas Story - did you know in Leviticus 2 the grain offering has to have frankincense added to it?

  • Honey is frequently mentioned. Have you smelt the headiness of honey?! We freqently focus on its sweet taste but honey has a very distinct and delicious scent in its own right. It's how the Promised Land is frequently described (Deuteronomy 8:8)

Smell is a key part of God's creation and we can use it to help us worship Him (as in the Old Testament church) and remind us of the Creator of our noses. Read on to find an activity that will help you remember Jesus through your nose!

Activity: DIY Reed Diffuser

You’ll need:

🌹 A narrow top ceramic or glass container (a small vase can work brilliantly)

🌹 Some bamboo skewers (like you’d use on the BBQ!), might be worth removing the spikes!

🌹 Sweet almond oil, ½ cup (grapeseed oil can work as well)

🌹 Essential oils, 30-50 drops

If you want to decorate your container, you’ll want to do this first. You can use Sharpies or glass paints or, an old favourite, PVA and tissue paper!

Carefully pour ½ cup of oil into your container and add 30-50 drops of essential oils. What about including some of the scents listed above? Give them a gentle stir and add 5-8 skewers.

Once the oil has traveled halfway up the sticks, turn them over to fully appreciate the aroma. You can keep turning them every week to maintain the scent.

Make sure you pick a scent that will remind you of Jesus. Cinnamon (given the debate, lol!) springs to mind but there are many other amazing scents. I often think of the New Heaven when I smell herbs because of the leaves that will bring healing to the nations. Roses make me think of the Garden of Eden and that description of God walking with Adam and Eve in the cool of the evening (roses smell amazing at that time, after the sun has been on them all day).

Busy week and fancy a cheat approach? Thankfully we aren't short of some beautifully scented offerings on Cheerfully Given!

Whitehouse Collection have a range of diffusers and candles
Skyran Candle Co
have two scents with the option of them as a diffuser, candle, or wax melts
Devoted Home has several different scents of reed diffusers

Also, if you would prefer a candle option, Suddy Nora has created a candle making kit. Definitely worth checking out if that's something you've always fancied trying!

Join us next week as we tackle touch! And if you have the 2022 Creative Christianity Summit, why not spend some time recapping Day 3 this week?

Product images used:

Grace and Glory Candle | Whitehouse Collection

Thankful Heart Diffuser | Whitehouse Collection

Candle Making Kit | Suddy Nora

Fear Not Candle | Skyran Candle Co