I have a little test for you: what are these the ingredients for?
Aqua, Sodium Laureth Sulfate, Sodium Chloride, Cocamidopropyl Betaine, Maris Sal, Salvia Sclarea Extract, Parfum, Citric Acid, Propylene Glycol, Tetrasodium EDTA, Sodium Lactate, Dipropylene Glycol, Butylphenyl Methylpropional, Benzyl Salicylate, Linaool, PEG-40 Hydrogenated Castor Oil, Trideceth-7, Sodium Benzoate, CI 42090, CI 19140
What do you think? Chocolate? Breakfast cereal?
No – it’s not edible.
Petrol? Windscreen Washer Fluid?
No, it’s not for use outside.
Carpet cleaner, washing up liquid?
Getting a bit warmer.
You are really warm now.
It’s actually the ingredients for a well known brand of bubble bath. Yes, That is what goes into making “bath soak – an unwinding blend, with clary sage and sea minerals” and with a “feel good fragrance”. I don’t think they would sell half as much of the stuff if they simply put the ingredients on the front.
But I thought bubble bath was simply made of ‘bubbly stuff’ + ‘smelly stuff’. Who knew it was so complex? And who knew that mixing all of those toxic-sounding chemicals together in the right combination would be an ‘unwinding blend’ that makes ‘bath soak’?
In the weird and wonderful way my brain works (sometimes it does work, but it is often more wander than full!) I wondered whether this is a bit like church? Bear with me.
Churches are made up of a number of disparate people. You may not naturally bring us together to make a church. But somehow, in God’s wisdom, he is blending us together so that we make something fragrant and lovely that should we should be able to describe simply – people following Jesus together and seeking to let other people know about him too.
Yes, the blending process is not always easy. Yes, we can be a bit caustic as individuals. Yes, we sometimes don’t sound like a place where people can relax in God’s presence.
But when God’s Spirit does the blending and we allow his grace to work in us, we are blessed by being church in order to bless those around us.
Be blessed, be a blessing.