Peanut Butter and Jelly

I understand the fascination of learning church history, doctrines, denominational differences, historical shifts, uprisings, theological philosophy, and Greek and Hebrew. It's interesting to learn where our beliefs have come from, why we believe the way we do, who came up with what ideas, and so on. But sometimes I feel like all the studying we do to learn about our faith has about the same purpose as studying peanut butter and jelly.

When someone hands you a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, you don't lay it on your plate, take a microscope and analyze its make-up. Nor do you grab a dictionary and look up the words "peanut butter" or "jelly." And certainly you don't research a dissertation on the different types of peanuts, the ways they can be harvested, the process of turning them into peanut butter, or how many different types of grapes or strawberries go into your jelly. You take it for what it is: a peanut butter and jelly sandwich. You trust that the peanut butter is, in fact, peanut butter, made from peanuts and sugar and whatever else goes into making peanut butter (the details may be vague, but you trust that the people who make the peanut butter know what they're doing). And you trust that the jelly is in fact made from whatever kind of fruit the jar says (strawberries, raspberries, or perhaps blackberries...yum!).

You don't analyze a peanut butter and jelly sandwich.

You eat it.

I think that sometimes we have to treat our faith that way. We come in all varieties: Baptist, Episcopal, Nazarene, Assemblies of God, Non-Denominational, Catholic. We have different flavors and different textures. But the fact of the matter is that we're still Christians. We make up the body of Christ. 

We shouldn't be analyzing one another, criticizing the slight difference in belief. We should be coming together to make some fantastic flavors in the world.

After all, no matter what we're made of, we're all peanut butter in the end.