2 Samuel 9:3-7 3 The king asked, “Is there no one still left of the house of Saul to whom I can show God’s kindness?”
Ziba answered the king, “There is still a son of Jonathan; he is crippled in both feet.”
4 “Where is he?” the king asked.
Ziba answered, “He is at the house of Makir son of Ammiel in Lo Debar.”
5 So King David had him brought from Lo Debar, from the house of Makir son of Ammiel.
6 When Mephibosheth son of Jonathan, the son of Saul, came to David, he bowed down to pay him honor. David said, “Mephibosheth!”
“Your servant,” he replied.
7 “Don’t be afraid,” David said to him, “for I will surely show you kindness for the sake of your father Jonathan. I will restore to you all the land that belonged to your grandfather Saul, and you will always eat at my table.”
Right when you think it’s going to be no more Mr. Nice Guy, David comes out with this extreme act of kindness. The house of Saul has been mostly destroyed, but David really wants to show kindness to the former king’s family. And wouldn’t you know it, the only guy left was a son of Jonathan. That worked out well. This guy’s name was Mephibosheth. Say that 5 times fast. Actually, try saying it one time fast!
There’s a wrinkle in the plan, however. It’s a cultural wrinkle. You see, anyone who was cripple was considered to be less than. They weren’t treated as equal. When David found out that Mephi was crippled in the feet, it didn’t detour his kindness. He didn’t stop and say, “well I’m not going to help that invalid. Isn’t there someone more fit to be blessed?”
He also didn’t pour out extra kindness because of his handicap. He didn’t treat him funny or ask if he wanted to be carried. He didn’t feel sorry for him or treat him like a charity case. He didn’t stare at those feet, causing Mephi to ask, “what you looking at!?” You know what he did? He treated him like a human being. His physical ailment didn’t change what he wanted to do: bless an heir of Saul. So he blessed him.
We get so hung up sometimes on the condition of people we are trying to help. We look at their appearance and determine how much we can help them. We look at their lifestyle and decide if they are worth our time. But we must keep in mind that Jesus didn’t come to give them a shower and get them all cleaned up; He came to clean up their hearts. He came to the poor and to the wealthy. He came to the disabled and to the physically strong. He came for humanity and He sends us out to that humanity to show His love. We have much to learn from David today. He was a man who, like the Lord, looked at the heart of the man rather than the condition of his feet.