“For we are to God the pleasing aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing. To the one, we are an aroma that brings death; to the other an aroma that brings life.” 2 Corinthians 2:15-16
That crazy homeless guy was standing at the balcony of the floor above me spitting on me again. I think he did that to everyone, so I didn’t take it personally. From my customer service desk on the first floor I reached for the phone to call the mall security. Once again they ushered him out of the mall. The day proceeded as normal after that.
A while later, Sheri, an off duty cop who also worked security at the mall leaned on the side of my desk making small talk to pass the hours of our shift. Sheri was a lesbian. Having grown up in the Twin Cities, I have known many homosexual people and I find them generally delightful people. The ones I’ve known are sensitive, intelligent, humorous, creative, and kind people. I don’t agree with their lifestyle on a moral basis, but I’ve never had any problems being friends with someone that I don’t agree with. As long as they are willing to accept me as a Christian and not censor my faith, I am very willing to be friends with homosexuals.
Sheri and I had spent a year and a half getting to know each other while leaning on my desk. She told me about how her partner lost a bunch of weight and needed to buy some new clothes, she told me about the time she broke her hand right before her deployment to Iraq, she teared up when she told me about men teasing her and provoking her to fight. She listened to my stories from missions trips to Mexico and Guatemala, she heard me tell about the night that I got engaged to Josh, she laughed with me as we sang the lyrics to old 80’s songs together. I considered her my friend.
While Sheri and I leaned and talked, suddenly Crazy Homeless Guy was standing right beside me. (Yikes! Where did he come from!) He leaned over my desk and got right in my face and hissed, “Christian! Christian! You hate homosexuals!” In my spirit I was aware that this was a demon speaking. Crazy Homeless Guy was demon possessed and was hissing at me like it was a sick and perverted thing to be a Christian. His accusation that I hated homosexuals was clearly intended to hurt Sheri. In unison, Sheri and I both shouted at him. I shouted, “NO I DON’T!” and she shouted, “NO SHE DOESN’T!” At the sound of our shouting, other mall cops rushed to our defense and ushered Crazy Homeless Guy out of the mall once again.
Sheri and I both stood there shaking with a mixture of rage and adrenaline. My spirit knew that was a demon. I had that bad after-taste that I get in my spirit after I brush up against something truly evil.
A few months later Crazy Homeless Guy actually tried to sue me! The company lawyers were on the case before I even knew it existed. I gave a deputation about his past behavior towards me. Sheri testified for me. Crazy Homeless Guy earned himself a restraining order and all the cops I worked with kept an eye out for me any time they saw me on the street.
How did Crazy Homeless Guy know that I was a Christian? I had never spoken to him before that day. Why did he spit on me? Why did he hiss at me? I think the demon in him smelled the aroma of Christ in me. To those who are looking for a way out of sin and death, Christians are the sweet aroma of new life. But to those who hate God, those in rebellion against Him, Christians smell like the blood of Jesus… we smell like their eventual defeat and punishment. And demons don’t care who they wound. His false accusation that I hated homosexuals was not really aimed at me. I think he was trying to hurt Sheri, to drive a wedge between us and to throw her off the scent of Christ in me. I’m glad it didn’t work.