At the time, David is grieving the loss of his best friend, Jonathan, one day, when he is prompted by the Lord to seek out any of Jonathan’s living relatives with the intent to bless them.
David asks one of his servants and learns that, yes, Jonathan has one relative who is still living. It's one of Jonathan's sons, and his name is Mephibosheth.
Mephibosheth was crippled after being dropped as a young child. His name means “despised one” or "shame." And, after the death of his father, Jonathan, Mephibosheth is living in a place called Lo Debar. Lo Debar was the most disgusting of slums. The name “Lo Debar” literally means “no pasture.” It was a filthy, barren, and impoverished.
When I was in Haiti last year, I remember driving several times past an area called Cite Soleil, meaning "city of the sun." Sounds kind of tropical...it was anything but. This city is built on top of the dump...literally tons of garbage piled up with shacks built on top. The poorest of the poor live there. There is no running water, no sewer system, crime is rampant, and the people who live there can't even afford the most basic necessities of life. It is Haiti's most notorious slum.
This is what I picture when I think about Lo Debar.
And here, in Lo Debar, with the rejected of society, Mephibosheth resides – with nothing to his name, no family, unable to even care for himself.
David sends for Mephibosheth and when this crippled man stands before the king, he says, “What is your servant, that you should notice a dead dog like me?”
David goes on to tell Mephibosheth that he will be given all the land that belonged to Saul’s family. Not only that, but David gives him workers to farm the land.
And then David tells Mephibosheth that he will have a place at the kings table to feast every day for the rest of his life, just like a son of the king.
From Lo Debar to the king’s palace.
How much greater is the mercy we have received from the Father! From our Lo Debar – utter need and depravity, spiritual blindness and eternity separated from God - to living in freedom and feasting at the table of the King.