Westminster Presbyterian Church
In the OT we find a story of King David and Mephibosheth.
Mephibosheth was the son of David’s best friend Jonathan. After Jonathan died in battle David said, “Is there still anyone left of the house of Saul, that I may show him kindness for Jonathan’s sake?”… And a servant said to the king, “There is still a son of Jonathan; he is crippled in his feet.” The king said, “Where is he?” And he sent for him and brought him to his palace. But when Mephibosheth came before David he fell on his face and paid homage. And David said, “Mephibosheth!” And Mephibosheth answered, “Behold, I am your servant.” And David said to him, “Do not fear, for I will show you kindness for the sake of your father, and I will restore to you all the land of your father, and you shall eat at my table always.” And Mephibosheth paid homage and said, “What is your servant, that you should show regard for a dead dog such as I?”… And so Mephibosheth ate at the King’s table, like one of the king’s sons. And he was lame in both his feet.
As we examine ourselves and prepare to come to the King’s Table, it is likely that some of us feel unworthy, like we don’t belong here. Or afraid, like we are going to be reprimanded or punished. Or worthless, like we don’t count as much as other people do. We look around the Table and see the King’s mighty men. They count; we don’t. We feel ashamed of our weakness and brokenness and sinfulness. Like Mephibosheth, we are lame in many ways. We cannot stand, walk, or run. We come to the King’s Table, fall on faces and offer ourselves as servants. Yet the King calls us by name and comforts us. He shows us kindness. He restores us. We come to his Table empty-handed and broken-hearted; and he fills our hands and heals our hearts with his body and blood. At this Table dead dogs like us feast our souls on the living Lamb who takes away the sins of the world.
Let us pray before we eat and drink:
O merciful Lord, we do not presume to come to this thy Table, trusting in our own righteousness, but in thy manifold and great mercies. We are not worthy so much as to gather up the crumbs under thy Table. But thou art the same Lord, whose property is always to have mercy: Grant us therefore, gracious Lord, so to eat the flesh of thy dear Son Jesus Christ, and to drink his blood, that our sinful bodies may be made clean by his body, and our souls washed through his most precious blood, and that we may evermore dwell in him, and he in us. Amen. (Cranmer, Prayer of Humble Access, 1548)