...Be a minister of Christ Jesus to the Gentiles with the priestly duty of proclaiming the gospel of God, so that the Gentiles might become an offering acceptable to God, sanctified by the Holy Spirit. Romans 15:16b (NIV)
Like Moses whose face shone with the radiance of God after being in His presence, so too, we bring something of God away with us from our intimate time with the Lord. As we pray and read the bible, when we praise Him and reach out in mission and mercy to others in His name, we find ourselves in God's immediate presence. His Spirit, which lives within us, makes our lives a holy offering and those seeking God's peace can't help but sense His presence in us. The Spirit sanctifies, and is sanctifying us, as He guides us in the will of God. As we follow His leading, He makes us living gospels for the world to read, just as if they were reading the words on the pages of a bible. And when we come together in a group, each with our own unique lingering fragrance of God's presence, the reality of His existence is undeniable, overwhelming, and inviting to a world of people in need of his grace.
One last thing – the scented oil I inhaled on the prayer walk communicated a profound spiritual truth which I will always treasure, but it also gave me a really bad headache. Perhaps it was just God's way of reminding me that just because He calls me to it, doesn't mean it isn't going to be difficult for me. God never said following Him was going to be easy or tranquil. It doesn't lead to fame and fortune or being debt-free. Jesus had no place to lay His head and promised His followers trouble, and even persecution, and that includes His 21st century disciples as well. Following God may often leave me with a headache, or tired and sweaty, or maybe even limping, but the joy and peace of His presence and the gift of His grace far outweigh the pain of discipleship.