The next time you make a PB and J sandwich

There are things in life that go together or we put together without even thinking about it.

Most people can’t think of ketchup without thinking of what? You’re right, mustard.

Peanut butter and jelly.

When you think of Batman most people automatically think of Robin.

What about Lucy and Ricky (Ricardo) from “I Love Lucy” or Fred and Wilma Flintstone?

What in the world does this have to do with our Christian journey?

Just like we think of those things that go together above, there two things I believe are so intertwined you not only can’t think of one without the other but you can’t have one without the other.

Have you already guessed what I’m talking about? You’re right – grace and mercy.

I am so very thankful for both. I don’t think I can put one above the other because they both are of the greatest of value in our lives.

Most of us have heard grace could stand for “God’s Riches At Christ’s Expense.” Isn’t that the truth?

Grace: getting what we didn’t deserve.

God’s richest treasure of heaven wasn’t the golden streets, the gates of pearl, His own throne or the multitude of angels. God’s greatest treasure was His one and only son, Jesus Christ.

Scripture tells us in John 3:16, “God so loved the world, that He gave…” God gave His son.

He didn’t have to. He could have required (and rightfully so) each one of us to answer for our own sins or each of us having to die for our sins. But He didn’t. God gave His son.

Then Christ spared no expense in offering himself as the ultimate sacrifice for our sins. What love Jesus had for the father that He (Jesus) gave His all in obedience to His heavenly father.

But we can’t forget the companion of grace and that is mercy.

I think a lot of people see God as an old man sitting on His throne with a big stick ready to knock us out at the first hint of sin. But He is so the opposite.

His love for you and for me is so much higher than we could ever comprehend. I am so thankful for His mercy.

Mercy means not getting what we did deserve. Think about that for a minute. What did we deserve?

Because of our rejection of Christ (before we gave our life to Jesus Christ), we deserved eternal separation from God. But God!

Ephesians 2:4 reminds us, “But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us.” Thank God He is rich in His mercy.

So the next time you spread peanut butter and jelly on two slices of bread or put ketchup and mustard on a hot dog or hamburger or you hear the intro theme song to “I Love Lucy,” I pray you remember and thank God for His Grace and Mercy.

Michael Smith is the executive pastor of Church of the Living God in Winchester. He can be reached at revmikesmith@yahoo.com.