We have some nasty bug critters here in Tennessee that do a number on the paraments if we do not keep them in check. One of the ways we keep them in check was an open box of moth balls -- just open enough to keep the bugs away without that putrid moth ball smell. At least that is how it worked until I kicked over the box of moth balls (accidentally) and the smell left the box with the moth balls. After gathering up those pesky moth balls, I thought the main damage was done. But no. The moth ball smell continued, at first weak and then growing stronger. Ahhh.... what to do. God should not smell like moth balls, that is sure. Oh, well, a problem becomes an opportunity and even blessing in the creative grace of God. So I got out the thurible and fired up the coals. Over the span of several days (snow days when some of the ordinary parish activities were suspended because of the school closing) I dumped spoon after spoon on those coals until finally today when I walked through, the smell of moth balls had given way to the real smell of God -- incense!
It is remarkable how often we present the Lord a problem and He turns it into an opportunity. In this small way I got to fire up incense burner even when services were not scheduled and the sweet smell of incense reigned again in the House of the Lord. Ahhh, life is good even in the midst of some small screw ups.