Reflection: Verse 17 strikes me. Feasting–for strength, not drunkenness. In a world of hazy absolutes, where people passionately ascribe to sometimes illogical stances, feasting has been attributed to gluttony, excess, and pride. Yet Solomon distinguishes two very different motivations for feasting. Feasting for drunkenness, whether literal or spiritual, is an escape. An attempt to escape the day-to-day, escape the pressures of life, and escape responsibility. Feasting for strength, however, is feeding the needs of the body. Nutrition, calories, and food-borne minerals strengthen the physical body. Connection, fellowship, and more intimate conversations experienced in feasting strengthen the bonds of brotherhood. Gratitude, humility, and understanding the vast provisions of God strengthen the faith of the one experiencing the feast. With strength of body, brotherhood, and faith, a man can do anything.
Application: In what areas are you hiding from reality, feasting on that which will distract you from what is before you? Review your life and see where the Lord has provided. See the friendships, the provisions, the purpose He has given. Feast on what the Lord has done. Feast for strength.
Prayer: God, give us courage to face the world before us. Give us humility to recognize Your provisions. Open our eyes to the brotherhood around us, given by You to strengthen our resolve. And show us how to enjoy the bounty only You can provide. In Jesus/ name, Amen. And amen.