You can find candles with just about every fragrance imaginable, from blueberry to ocean mist, to hot apple pie. Now, there's a candle that lets you experience the "scent of Jesus." And surprisingly, it's straight from South Dakota, not Bethlehem. They've been selling by the case.
"We see it as a ministry," says candle maker Bob Tosterud. Light up the candle called "His Essence" and, according to the makers, you'll experience the fragrance of Christ. "It's a very meaningful experience."
The obvious question is, 'how do you capture the scent of Jesus?' It's all spelled-out in Psalm 45. Candle maker Karen Tosterud explains, "It's a Messianic Psalm, referring to when Christ returns, and his garments will have the scent of myrrh, aloe and cassia." Wondering what this would smell like, Karen ordered a combination of oils that produce a sort of flowery-cinnamon aroma. Then she called on a friend, who just happened to be a candle maker. "And in October, we got our first batch of 768 candles. We had no idea how it would go."
But once word got out, "It was the hottest item in South Dakota for Christmas." They went through 10,000 candles. Karen says, "It's the only one on the market, and everyone tells us it's very unique and nothing like it." Bob adds, "When Karen thought of this one, I was just astonished. I just thought it was the neatest idea that I had ever heard."
"We wanted people to be able to experience Christ in new ways, and to be able to read a Bible and have that scent and that candle, as a reminder that he is with us all the time. You can't see him and you can't touch him. This is a situation where you may be able to sense him by smelling, and it provides a really new dimension to one's experience with Jesus."
The candles are in about 150 stores, but never stay on the shelves for long. The Tosteruds say each one that goes out is like a ministry in itself. The candles sell for about $18.
Should I have posted this in the lounge? I think I should point out that I'm an atheist