I've always loved smelling my kids heads. We used to play the guessing game and I'd close my eyes and guess who's head it was. When Ryan started wearing dreads it became pretty easy. Yuck! You don't even want to know what is in those things. But I still loved his smell. His smell was Ryan.
Tonight I was going through some of his things looking for a backpack to use and I picked up one of his shirts and made the mistake of putting it up to my nose. I was done for. The tears and sobbing came and I just sat down and took it in. Oh how I miss that man that went with the scent. We walk past his car and we can smell him through the closed windows. We walk past his tools in the garage and we can smell him. We will not remove those scents because they continue to remind us of the son whose essence filled our home, not just with scent but with personality and character. When Ryan entered and left a room his essence was evident. Most of the time I think people watched him leave and enter with a smile on their face. What an essence.
These thoughts this evening brought me to pondering what my essence is like. And, do people really think about their essence? I think we should. I'm sure we can all think of someone in our lives that when they enter we feel tension and when they leave we are relieved. Conversely, there are those we love to see come into the room and sad to see leave. Then, there are those we could care less if they come in or leave because they add nothing to our lives. Wow, that is pretty harsh isn't it.....but I think we can identify with each of those descriptors.
Our essence reflects our character and our personality. I think our character reflects our heart and our heart impacts our personality. When you come down to it....our heart is the source of our essence. I guess that makes sense since Proverbs 4:23 says: Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it. What does one do with a broken heart then? Can you still have a good essence?
God promises in Psalm 73:26 My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. This tells me that even when I'm weak He can be my strength and portion FOREVER. I can choose to walk in my weakness and be bitter or allow God to be my strength and get better. I choose "better". Even in this saddest time in my life I want my essence to be that of God's strength in my weakness, and that of faith and not doubt. I pray my presence brings peace and not tension. I feel like I can do this and still cry now and again for I also want to be real. I can voice, "I miss my son immensely" and at the same time trust Jesus for why Ryan had to leave. I can do this because His grace is sufficient for me, for His power is made perfect in my weakness. Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. II Corinthians 12:9
May my essence be the power of Christ in me.