One night at the dinner table, I watched Cole eat. He scooped up some sweet potatoes and placed them on top of a nacho cheese Dorito. Then he ate it.
After I finished gagging, I watched to see if he would do it again. I was sure the combination of tastes would prevent him from repeating his culinary faux pas.
Much to my surprise, he did do it again ... several times.
I didn't correct Cole, because he wasn't trying to be silly. I don't even think he knew I was watching him. He liked sweet potatoes, and he liked nacho cheese Doritos. If he liked them separately, he'd certainly like them even more together.
I thought back to previous meals. I remembered that a few weeks ago I'd watched him put ketchup on his corn and eat it. I don't know how to explain it. I was disgusted, yet I was intrigued. I didn't want to watch him, but I couldn't stop myself, either.
The food combinations Cole comes up with are unique and disturbing.
God puts certain things together, too. The combinations he comes up with are much better. Instead of food combinations, he comes up with spiritual combinations - combinations that are not for our bodies, but for our souls.
According to the psalmist, God gives "grace and glory" (Psalm 84:11). In Jeremiah 33:6, God promises the people of Israel spiritual "health and healing," as well as "peace and truth." John tells us that through Jesus, grace and truth were realized (John 1:17). In Romans 14:17, Paul says the kingdom of God is "righteousness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit."
In 1 Timothy 1:2, Paul wishes upon Timothy "grace, mercy and peace from the Father and Christ Jesus our Lord." John echoes that same combination in 2 John 1:3.
Some might say, "That's a part of the letter's greeting. They're not saying God gives those things, they're wishing those things for the reader."
That may be true, but don't you think they know those things originate with God?
Once a persecutor of the church, Paul received grace, mercy and peace when he became a follower of Christ. He knows what he's talking about.
As for John, he spent more than three years with Jesus. He certainly witnessed Jesus doling out grace, mercy and peace not only individually, but also collectively.
The spiritual combinations our heavenly father comes up with are fascinating. They feed our souls and are available to those who will accept Christ and receive the blessings that come from a relationship with him.
Parrish Myers is a local minister. His column appears biweekly in Sunday Life and on gainesvilletimes.com/life.