It all started this summer on the way to Haiti, when my "little brother" on the trip, Brady, and I were talking about Mephibosheth for majority of the plan ride between Chicago and Miami. He had just done a Bible study lesson on "Mep" (as he likes to call him), and was pointing out what an awe-inspiring character he is. If you don't know much about him, check out 2 Samuel 9 (and a little bit of 4, 17, and 19 if you really want to dig deep). Mep is a son of Jonathan, who was the son of King Saul meant to inherit the kingdom of all of Israel. But, as we know, the kingdom was given to David. Now, Mep also happened to be crippled in both legs, an accident that happened as his family fled once Saul and Jonathan were dead, and they knew that officials of David would most likely kill the rest of the family. Once David establishes his kingdom, out of kindness for Jonathan, he searches for any of Jonathan's living relatives, finds Mep, gives him back all of his inheritance, and let's him eat at the king's table all of the days of his life.
When I was first recounting this story with Brady, the parable of the feast in Luke entered my mind. A wise Jewish leader approaches Jesus and says, "Blessed is the one who will eat at the feast of the kingdom of God." In response, Jesus doesn't say, "Yes...you are right!" (He doesn't seem to say that very often, does he?). Instead, he launches into a parable where many important people were being invited to a great banquet. All of the original invitees turned down their invitations, and the servants of the hosts had to go into the streets, bringing in the blind, the lame, the beggars. And thus, the feast was filled and no one originally invited was at the feast. Although this parable didn't make it into the song because I'm already too wordy as it is, I think it strikes at the heart of this parable and Mep's story, at least in how it relates to us: Who are we to think we deserve to sit at the table? Those who think they are worthy turn down the Savior, and they are left outside. But, what does that mean for us, if we believe we are at the feast? Yes, indeed we are blessed, but we recognize that we don't deserve any part of that blessing. That it is only by the grace and mercy of the king that we have a place at the table. Mep's posture throughout his entire life was one of humility. This song calls me to live in that posture as well.
Most of my best songs write themselves in a small amount of time. This song took 6 months to write, but it was small bursts of insight followed by long periods of silence or me trying to find the right words and they never panned out. So, in a way, this turned out to be a song completely born out of inspiration, and it was such a humbling adventure. My prayer for me is that the bridge is always how I relate to my Savior - I hope it can be your prayer as well!
Come sit at the table, my place is set
For I am Mephibosheth
Come let me tell you of all that’s been done for me
You’ll hear a tale of how mercy prevailed in my life
Though great were my misfortunes
All that I am will never forget who I was
I was the grandson of Saul, but then I was no one
Left with no other boast but the man now on the throne
Oh, how can it be?
Oh, what kind of king would show grace to his enemy?
Searching to find me: the least of the least
Who could believe there would be a Redeemer for me?
No longer a tragedy
This is my story
Yes, you heard me rightly, I once was the scion of royalty
But then I was orphaned
With nothing to show for my name but two broken legs
You can imagine the fear that I felt when he sent for me
For what was the worth of a life such as mine?
“You are Jonathan’s son,” he said, “Don’t be afraid”
“There is a place at this table for you all of your days”
Who is this King?
Who delights to show favor to those who can’t earn it?
And who am I?
But the most undeserving of His kindness to me
Leave me on my knees
My name is complicated. My parents named me Theresa. My friends call me "Pinky." My professional title is "Ms. Lindell." Choose one.