“The cheerful heart has a continual feast.”
(Proverbs 15:15a, NIV)

I love the word feast. Grand images of large tables adorned with the regalia of fabric, candles, special dishes, and shiny silverware comes to mind. Derived from the Latin root, festa, meaning joyous, feast connotes celebration. Now, true “feasting” isn’t limited to holidays or at least it shouldn’t be. Several weekends ago, Rob and I experienced a joyous feast while visiting Brooke at Liberty University. After a jam-packed weekend watching her Club Ultimate Frisbee Tournament, several of her close friends joined us for dinner, or should I say “feast.”

We gathered around a seemingly ordinary table at a local Mexican restaurant to enjoy one another’s company. Rob and I were so blessed that these fine young men and women would actually want to spend several hours with “parents.” Perhaps they were fed up with college/apartment food, but nonetheless, we sat for hours talking, laughing, and yes, eating!

Isn’t it interesting that Proverbs 15:15 compares a cheerful heart to a continual feast? I’ve been chewing (no pun intended) on this all day and need to put this proverb into action as I rush about preparing for our family’s celebration of Thanksgiving. What good are all the trimmings if I don’t have a cheerful heart? In light of this, here’s my idea:

  1. Prepare my heart by slowing down long enough to really immerse myself in a spirit of gratitude.
  2. Share this renewed sense of gratitude with every person I come in contact with over the next couple of days. Put Proverbs 17:22
    into action, “A cheerful heart is good medicine.” IF a cheerful heart is a continual feast, why should I
    keep it all to myself? A feast is meant to be shared.
  3. Remember that a true feast is not about the “adornments” [the table settings or over-sized portions] but the “acknowledgment” of others—taking the time to reconnect with loved ones, friends, or even strangers who might be sitting next to you at dinner.

A cheerful heart really does act like medicine. Look around your Thanksgiving feast table. Does someone need a little “medicine?”

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