Take your refrigerator for example. If something inside the refrigerator smells, you can open a box of baking soda or just slam the refrigerator door shut. The problem? The smell will still be there the next time you open the refrigerator. It will most likely smell worse. Why? Because you have not removed the source of the smell. 

When sin causes our lives to "stink," we have to remove the source of the smell. Although sin separates us from our Heavenly Father, God is not out to beat us over the head by convicting us of sin. He exposes the "smell" of sin in our lives because He wants nothing to stand between us and Him.  

So how do we get rid of the "stink?" Simple. We believe in the power of the cross, and then we ask God to forgive us and turn away from the source of the smell. We get rid of whatever is causing our lives to stink, and we don't put it back in our lives. If it creeps back in, it is because we have left an opening for it to return. 1 John 1:9-10 says, "If we confess our sins He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness." 

Jesus was well-acquainted with the stench of sin and paid the ultimate sacrifice to wipe sin from our lives.  With every lash and every foul word that came from the soldiers who nailed Him to the cross, His nostrils were filled with the horrifying aroma of the devastation of sin. The smell was just as great for the "little" sins as it was for the "big" sins. It all stunk to Him. That is why He intervened. He knew there was nothing we could do in our own power to cross the threshold of garbage into the presence of God, so He paid the ultimate price. His blood and death on the cross covered the stench of every sin we can fathom. His resurrection gives the fresh smell of new life to all who will believe. 

If you are discouraged by a sin in your life that seems to linger, begin anew this Easter. Jesus knows the smell of sin and hated it so much, He died just for you. He knew you would struggle, and that the foul smell of sin would attempt to overwhelm you. The powerful news of Easter is that He rose again so you could know the fresh aroma of beginning again. Give Jesus access to all the hidden places in your life this coming Easter and experience a "scent" that can never be bought. It is a gift and it was given over two thousand years ago marked with your name.

Shannon Perry is a speaker/singer/writer/radio host whose new If The Shoe Fits women's conferences combine her teaching prowess with her musical talent.  Perry's new music CD entitled The Real Thing (produced by Lifeway writer/producer Paul Marino) features songs specifically written to fit in with the theme of the conferences.  Perry earned her Master's Degree in Education with an emphasis in counseling and taught in the public school system for over fourteen years before entering into full-time ministry.  She has performed with the Houston Symphony, appeared at Carnegie Hall, and recently sang before 70,000 at a NFL home game for the Houston Texans.  Shannon has just released her first book entitled Grace in High Heels: Real-life reflections of humor, hope and healing. For more information, visit www.ShannonPerry.com