Good Friday to You: A thought about the smell of the crucifixion and the “beautiful thing done”


There is a scarf I have in my closet that when I wrap it just right, the place where I sprayed perfume lands right below the right side of my face and I have this hint of deep rich perfume throughout the time in which I wear it. The original time I sprayed the perfume on the scarf and the time I wear the scarf may be very different in experience – a night to an auction vs a run to the store; but somehow the mood of the perfume meets me still.

Similarly, I have a work shirt of my Grandmother’s (Ruth – who passed away last year) and when I wear it while it’s humid, the musk of her rose and her summer garden, her nighttime kitchen and old hands raises up and I feel her through the vivid imagery invoked by this smell.

Before the Last Supper, Jesus was anointed by a woman who poured over him a jar of expensive perfume. There is no account of Jesus’ last bath and even if there were, I find it hard to imagine such a strong perfume would be entirely washed away. I am thinking the sweat, the blood, the tears – the betrayal, the rooster, the cross – all were experienced with this anointing scent.

I believe God gives us ways to remember promises and ever faithfulness. When Jesus was anointed by the woman, he said to his disciples that she had “done a beautiful thing to him”. This Good Friday, I reflect on Jesus carrying the cross, beaten and torn.

I imagine that through the deep inhales required in such excruciating pain and humiliation he inhaled the beautiful thing done to him.

I imagine the scent invoking the memory of her (Mathew 26:10-13) in Jesus’ mind as he suffered and died. And that this memory, prompted by the smell of the perfume, was perhaps even a reminder of the Gospel to Jesus in this time.Somehow I find this as a way God the Father was with him.

I wish you a blessed and holy Good Friday. May God hold your heart tight in whatever you are going through. May you live ever mindful and forever strong in his will and word. May there pieces that fall in place that remind you of all of this great love God has for you. Namaste.