Proverbs 15:17 New International Version (NIV)
17 Better a small serving of vegetables with love than a fattened calf with hatred.
No, this is not a new diet plan but a reminder as a father on how the atmosphere must be when it comes to your dining table. As you see one of the challenges of the family today is to have everybody in the dining table. I have tried my best to have dinner at home at least 5x a week and I want to maximize those dinner times with my wife and kids.
Maximize doesn’t mean I need a KING’s meal but rather have a time to be with my wife and kids and have a conversation. I think that is harder for us men than sticking to our diet plan. You see I grew up in a family that finishes their dinner in less than 20 minutes. If you don’t eat fast, you will have no food. So I kind of carried that to my family now. My wife on the other hand, loves to talk and fellowship during dinner time. That means 45 minutes minimum to an average of an hour just talking and catching up.
What that also means is that I have to take it real slow since my kids also eat slow. The first few years were really hard. I wanted to stand up and do my thing already while my family ate and talk. I get impatient waiting for them. I was not creating an atmosphere of warmth and love. We could have three viands and I still finish the same time. That is why the verse in Proverbs 15:17 hit me yesterday.
Better a small serving of vegetables with love. Have I practiced that verse? Have I slowed down and showed love during our dinner times. Do my family feel I want to be with them or do I always show to them I am in a hurry because I have more important stuff to do?
Now on the other hand, it also says than FATTENED CALF WITH HATRED.
That means during dinner time – no negative talk and no fighting. Have a faith filled environment and talk about what good happened during the day, have discussions on what you are thankful for and what made you excited throughout the day. As what my friend Chinkee Tan said, always be positive in your conversation.