Perspective on Feasts

Sometimes Proverbs seems like a collection of sayings in a random order but sometimes taking one out of context can change the meaning entirely.  Take for example Proverbs 15:15 –

All the days of the afflicted are evil,
            but the cheerful of heart has a continual feast.”

One way of reading this might be that if we have a continual feast, we will of course be cheerful, while affliction will sour our attitude.  However, the following two verses tell us that what we consider to be a feast is a matter of the perspective we bring to it, not the contents of the meal:

Better is a little with the fear of the LORD
            than great treasure and trouble with it.
Better is a dinner of herbs where love is
            than a fattened ox and hatred with it.”

When we choose the fear of the Lord, and to live in love for those we feast with, even a small meal of herbs can be a feast!  From a heart of thankfulness, we can be satisfied with whatever manna and daily bread the Lord provides, instead of begging Him for quail.

Therefore, “the cheerful of heart has a continual feast” not because of an elaborate, expensive, multi-course meal, but because of a heart of love that reveres the Lord. If today serves you nothing but herbs, be thankful instead of being like this sad dwarf.

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