Inspiration

By Charles Towne

If you could describe love in one word what would that word be?

I imagine my word for love would have to be gardenias.  When I smell gardenias I can’t help but think of Papa God’s wonderful love.

That sweet scent assails my senses in a language far beyond words.

I was at my friend Don’s house.  In his dooryard stands a magnificent gardenia bush.  Gardenias, as I am sure you are aware are seasonal, unlike Papa God’s magnificent love which is always in full bloom.  Don’s gardenia bush, the one he planted for his wife, due to the fact we had already had some chilly weather, was past the time for it to be blooming, but there, right in front of my face as I walked up his drive was a glorious gardenia blossom, and what a blossom it was!  About four inches across, pure white, and just begging to be sniffed!  So, what could I do?  I sniffed it!  Heaven, pure heaven!  I would like to gather armloads of that wonderful scent and bathe in it!

Or how about jasmine?  I have some Jasmine growing in my yard and what a joy it is!  I have met a few dear souls that didn’t get along well with Jasmine but as for me and my house, we could wallow in it.  I could let it transport me to another realm of mystery and delight.   (I hate to admit it for fear you will think me strange but I have been known to hug my jasmine!)  Dear Papa God, thank you for the smell of jasmine!

Yes, gardenias and flowering jasmine shout love loud and clear, at least to me.   But then as I already alluded to, I am a little strange, just a little mind you.

I wonder what word Papa God would use?  Perhaps it would be grace or forgiveness.  Mercy would be good, as would acceptance.  But then perhaps he would use the word gift, as in “salvation is a free gift from God!”  Or, Jesus is the ultimate gift to man, or, God gave himself that all mankind might be saved!

Yes, gardenias and jasmine smell like love.  Love is God’s Holy gift to you, my friend!  Pretty neat I would say.

I wonder, maybe Papa God just might be a little like me and choose gardenias, You expect?


Charles Towne is first and foremost a Christian. An octogenarian, author, journalist, wildlife photographer, naturalist, caregiver, and survivor, his life has been and continues to be, a never-ending adventure filled with possibilities never imagined. He has adopted the philosophy that to Live fully, laugh uproariously, love passionately, and learn like there is no tomorrow, is a formula for a long and joy-filled life.

14 COMMENTS

  1. What an awesome thought!
    I have never really contemplated “how” love would smell, but it couldn’t be any better than God’s beautiful flowers. He goes to great lengths to show us His everlasting, unconditional love and something as overwhelming as fragrance comes pretty close to describing it! Gardenias were my late husband’s favorite flower and I’m sure he and God enjoy their fragrant beauty everyday.
    God bless you, Chuck.

  2. Dear CSG, When I contemplate the wonderful phenomenon of the sense of smell I am almost overwhelmed. What a loving and generous God we serve as evidenced by His generosity. Just thinking of the senses such as hearing. I revel in beautiful music! Or taste? Then we have the marvel of sight! Each of these and so much more? To be able to respond to a lovers touch? Each and every one of the senses whispers, “I love you!” To a fallen world. How He must love us! God bless you and yours my friend. Chaz

  3. Ahh, NH, YES orange blossoms! The sense of smell is so keen and it can be stimulated many years after the fact. I am reminded, pleasantly I might add, of kitchen smells, of the autumn season, and spring with its greening as well as summer, and winter had its own distinct smell. You will think me strange but i can somehow, all of these years after the fact, remember the sweet smell of my mama as I nursed at her breast as an infant, and we can’t forget sweet puppies breath. So many smells, so many memories. Bless you, Chaz

  4. Hi Charlie, I often wonder how so many people can go throughout life without noticing G-Ds gift to us. Those of us who are attuned to everything around us are indeed blessed. Thank you for the great article.

  5. Love and smells, My friend, your article reminded me of something my mom used to tell me and then she would laugh, she would reminisce about some perfume I once bought for her when I was very young. Young boys are not naturally gifted shoppers, it seems I had saved my allowance and saw a gigantic bottle of perfume, probably at a gas station or somewhere similar and on the theory that more is better I bought it for mom as a present! I do not know for sure if she was was trying to guilt trip me or not, I choose to believe not, but she would tell the story, say that the perfume smelled terrible and then she would laugh, look at me and say, “but I wore it!” Not flowers, but that is what I think love must smell like! A really stinky perfume sometimes!

  6. Richard my friend, mamas have a wonderful knack for making their sons feel like they have done a wonderful thing don’t they? I picked mama a big bouquet one time from the graveyard, yes I did! Another time I picked her a bouquet of tulips from a neighbor’s yard. Mama made me go to the neighbor and confess that I picked her award winning tulips. Hey, I meant well! Praise God for award winning mamas. Bless you my friend, Chaz

  7. Chaz, you cause me to remember my mother. I was blessed to have a mother who loved me. I can remember so many treasured moments. A mother’s love must be so very similar to God’s love! A Friend

  8. Dear friend, you are so right when you compare mama’s love with God’s love! My mother had to put up with a lot of mischief from those that should have known better, but she was the epitome of gracious love. Bless you and yours, Chaz

  9. Scents are truly a gift…and can transport us immediately back to our childhoods. I LOVE the smell of Gardenias and Jasmine…must be the sense of smell doesn’t fall far from the tree!!!

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