Many times we wake up and something unexpected happens that day. Something suddenly happens that changes the course of life. A suddenly happens. Just like Mephibosheth, many people go through situations that they cannot control; Situations that present themselves with no human understanding. A suddenly happens and we find out we are so powerless.
Before I start talking about Mephibosheth, let me tell you a story of a lady I was listening to the other day. This lady found herself in a situation that she had no control over. One day she woke up and her leg was swollen. She later on decided to go to the doctor and they found out she had DVT (Deep Vein Thrombosis). She started taking medication after being hospitalized for five days. Two months later, she was having trouble breathing and when she went back to the doctors, she was told she had clots on her lungs and her heart. After those were taken care of, they now had to find out where these clots are coming from. After a PET scan, they found out she had stage 4 lung cancer. That was a suddenly. Now, let’s talk about Mephibosheth.
Mephibosheth was the child of King Saul’s son Jonathan. He was lame on both his feet. He was not born in this condition but one day, when he was five years old, his caretaker picked him to run away with him because his grandfather and father had died in war and he fell. It must have been a very hard fall. A fall that was very painful for a five year old. This left him in a condition that would affect the rest of his life. It changed the trajectory of his life.
Lessons from Mephibosheth
You are not a by the way
We are first introduced to this man in 2 Samuel chapter 4:4. The bible says, “Jonathan, the son of Saul, had a son who was crippled in his feet. He was five years old when the news about Saul and Jonathan came from Jezreel, and his nurse took him up and fled, and as she fled in her haste, he fell and became lame. And his name was Mephibosheth.”
One of the greatest surprises about this is that a lot had happened before he is introduced. For one, Saul and Jonathan had died a while before and David had been anointed king in Judah. Also, Ishbosheth, Saul’s son had been anointed as King of Israel. Abner who was the commander of Saul’s Army had made a deal with David so that David would finally become the King of all Israel. Then Abner was killed and after he died, this affected Ishbosheth, Saul’s son, greatly. Chapter 4 of second Samuel, verse 1, 2 and 3, we find out how Ishosheth had been affected and we are given names of the two brothers who would later kill him. In verse 4, here comes Mephibosheth. It’s like the writer remembered all about Mephibosheth and he tells us nothing else but that he was crippled and the reason he was crippled. Maybe you have felt like you are a by the way. People have treated you like you don’t matter. You seem to have been forgotten. I just wanted to encourage you that you are very important in the eyes of God. Just because you are going through what you are going through does not mean you have been forgotten. God loves you and he cares for you.
Just because you are going through difficulty, it does not mean you did something wrong
Mephibosheth found himself crippled not because he had done something wrong but because his grandfather had been disobedient. Let me say something here. When we make wrong decisions and we know they are wrong and we bear the consequences that is not the same as something happening to us because the enemy caused it. Let me give two examples. Job, who went through a great deal of pain and anguish, did what was right. The bible describes him as a man blameless and upright, one who feared God and shunned evil. Yet the devil, who is the accuser of brethren, went before God and accused him. The devil caused a lot of havoc in Job’s life. On the other hand, there was man called Samson. Samson chose to be with Delilah. He chose a woman from enemy territory and worse of all he was hanging out with her in enemy territory. He ended up losing his eyesight because of a decision he made which unfortunately for him carried permanent consequences that affected his life greatly. In the case of Mephibosheth, he became crippled because of something King Saul did. King Saul was disobedient to God therefore that had a ripple effect on his family.
God is still taking care of you even in your difficult situation
Mephibosheth was not sitting around in the streets begging. He actually was in someone home being taken care of. He was in the house of a man called Machir, the son of Ammiel at Lo-debar. He had a son too. God was still taking care of him in his condition. Machir had opened his home and showed kindness to him. When we are going through hard times it is important not to focus on the difficulty but focus on what God is doing. Sometimes we get so caught in the difficulty and don’t see what God is doing. When the children of Israel left Egypt, they were excited. They had gone through harsh conditions and they had been crying to God to get them out of there. What amazes me is that they watched the parting of the Red Sea and saw the army of Egypt perish. You should read the words to the song they sung after that experience only to complain three days later about water. They were always complaining about something; if it was not the water, the bread, if not the bread, the meat. They even had time to sit down and reminiscent about the pots of meat they sat around in Egypt. I pray that we can remember to focus on what God is doing in our lives when we are going through wilderness experiences. God is right there with us. If he let us go, we would not make it. His mercies are new every morning and He gives us extra grace to go through what we are going through. I had a lady say one day that her and her husband were going through so much they knew if they allowed themselves to be discouraged, they would not have gotten out of that situation.
If you have not experienced your breakthrough, it does not mean God has forgotten about you
God had not forgotten Mephibosheth. A while later, after David had ascended the throne, he asked whether there was anyone left in the house of Saul so that he would show kindness to him. Ziba, who was Saul’s servant told him about Mephibosheth. It is of importance to note that Ziba knew of Mephibosheth but he never went to get him to bring him back to his grandfather’s home. Sometimes we may think that so and so can get me out a situation. It does not happen this way. Remember Joseph when he was in jail. After he interpreted the dream of one of the kings servants, he asked him not to forget about him but the servant did not remember him at all. It took God to give a dream to Pharaoh who then needed someone to interpret that dream and that is how the servant remembered Joseph. That was two years later. This was God’s perfect timing. God does not run late. He always has a reason for allowing us to be in a situation for a while. For one, he is building our character. It would have been difficult for Joseph to hold such a position if he had not gone through the process that allowed him to mature and have good character. Remember God has not forgotten about you which leads me to my next point.
God will come through for you
David sent for Mephibosheth and when he came, he bowed down to the king. 2 Samuel 9:7 reads, And David said to him, “Do not fear, for I will show you kindness for the sake of your father Jonathan, and I will restore to you all the land of Saul your father, and you shall eat at my table always.” David was not only going to restore everything to him that Saul had left behind but he was going to sit down with David and eat with him always. Not occasionally but always. God restores. God restored Job’s wealth and gave him twice as much as he had before. Jesus restored people back to wholeness. He healed the sick, raised the dead and set the demon possessed free. God is able to restore what has been taken away from you. You may have enemies laughing at your because of what you are going through. Some people may think that you deserve what you are going through but I will encourage you with the Word of God found in Psalm 23:5-6 which says, “You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; you anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever”
The situation you are in does not change the fact that you are royalty
Just because Mephibosheth was crippled did not change the fact that he was the grandson of a king. Just because you are going through a difficult situation does not mean you are not a child of a king. Your situation does not change the fact that you are royalty. God is the King and as believers, we are his children. We should not allow our difficulties to change our identity. Mephibosheth saw himself as worthless. This is what he says when David speaks to him: “What is your servant, that you should show regard for a dead dog such as I?” The situation he was in had affected his mindset therefore affected his self-esteem. The bible says as a man thinks so is he. In other words, we become what we think or we are what we think. If we think we are failures then we fail. If we think we will never make it, it does not matter how many times we get encouraging messages, we will never make it until we change that mindset.
Always remember that whatever you are going through is just for a season. Isaiah 43:2 says, When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; And through the rivers, they shall not overflow you. When you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned, Nor shall the flame scorch you.
Author of Hopeful Living, Trusting God to Guide you through Life
Speaker and Radio Show Host of Woman Transformed
President of Woman Transformed