An Invitation from the King

My great aunt Arlene loved to tell stories.  Most of them were complete fabrications, but I always enjoyed listening to her tell them, especially if her dentures inadvertently fell out in the process.  One time she tried to convince me that our family was somehow related to John Wilkes Booth.  Sure, it’s romantic to think I might be part Cherokee Indian (as another one of her stories goes), but being distant kin to the man who killed Abraham Lincoln is not exactly a bragging right I’m eager to claim.

I can only assume that’s how Mephibosheth felt.  He was the grandson of King Saul, the man most noteworthy for his assassination attempts on the future king of Israel, King David.  To make matters worse, Mephibosheth was crippled, practically since birth.

So imagine his surprise when, many years into his own adulthood and after his grandfather’s death, he was summoned by King David.  If I were invited to lunch tomorrow by a prominent member of the Lincoln family, I think I’d throw up.  But one thing Mephibosheth had working in his favor was that his father was King David’s best friend, Jonathan.  And because of that friendship and a promise that David made to Jonathan several years earlier, King David wanted nothing more than to show kindness to Mephibosheth, the sole survivor of the house of Saul.  That kindness was translated as an invitation for Mephibosheth to eat at the king’s table.  Forever.  As if he was one of the king’s own sons.

I can rest most assuredly that my family had nothing to do with Abraham Lincoln’s demise.  Honestly, I think I’m just related to a really good storyteller.  But I still feel quite a connection to Mephibosheth.  Like him, I am simply guilty by association.  I, too, have been summoned by a King.  Out of His great love and kindness, He has forever welcomed me to eat in His presence, as if I were one of His own children.  And like Mephibosheth, even if I have to be carried to the King’s table, I humbly accept the invitation.

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