What does incense symbolize?
According to one ancient liturgist, the incense represents Christian prayer itself which is kindled by the fire of the love of God. Just as His self-gift on the cross sanctifies the world, so too everything which is incensed gains the odor of that incense. This is why the incense represents purity and sanctification. Prayer changes the lives of those who practice it making them happier and holier people. By living holy and prayerful lives, they give off the odor of Christ.