The hospitality of encouraging words does not always have to be grey or dull. Take communion as but one example of the many feasts we celebrate. What does the Lord’s supper look like in your church? Are the faces of the people as stale as the bread sometimes is?
Solomon once said, “The feast is made for laughter, and wine maketh merry” (Ecclesiastes 10:19). Sitting around a table filled with laughter is not a luxury when believers gather, it is what the feast is for.
Among the feasts of Israel at the Temple year by year, God had this to say about our eating and drinking,
…spend the money on whatever you desire. Oxen, sheep, wine or strong drink, whatever your heart desires. And you shall eat there before the Lord your God and rejoice, you and your household. (Deuteronomy 14:26)
To miss this is to miss something precious about what it means to glorify and honour God.
The gods of this world demand to be fed, and so we are told that they created mankind to serve the table of the gods. The God who made Heaven and Earth did not come demanding food but created a garden of food for His people to enjoy.
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He did not come to be fed, but to feed. False gods always demand food from their slaves. A Good Father feeds His children and the children are all smiling.
Where did we get the idea that our gathering together has to be filled with sickly grey faced speech?
If someone cannot laugh and thinks it is never profitable or edifying to tell a story brimming with mirth he is on the path to the wrong kind of serious.
Something that men like Martin Luther was acutely aware of at his own table.
Feasts are made for laughter. They are made for joy. They are not for drunkenness or immorality or bitterness, but they are made to fill the heart with gladness.
We are not among those who fuss and pick our way through a terrifying menu of calories.
We are among those who laugh and drink with a free conscience because our God watches over us with redeeming love.
Sharing our lives, it’s comedy, as well as its tragedy, is for those who know how to feast before a God who delights in those who delight in His provision.