"Now there was in Joppa a disciple named Tabitha, which, translated, means Dorcas. She was full of good works and acts of charity." - Acts 9:36
It’s amazing what we learn about this lovely Christian lady in a few verses. She was known for acts of kindness, helping other people in need. She was a seamstress, and many of her acts of charity consisted of making clothes and giving them to people who couldn’t afford them. She was especially kind to widows, who in that time and place often lived in poverty. Her sudden death left the community, especially those who were beneficiaries of her kindness, devastated.
There are some people whose passing leaves a big hole in our lives. The factor that seems to determine just how big a vacuum we feel at their loss is their concern for other people, their kindness and selflessness.
In this case, at the request of the believers in Joppa, Peter, who was visiting the Christians in another town nearby, came to them to comfort them, and as Peter prayed the Lord led him to raise Tabitha from the dead. He consoled them by giving her back to them.
Has the love of Jesus so worked in your heart that your care for others around you has become the hallmark of your life? As we read about the Lord Himself we find that this is the defining characteristic of His character, too. He set aside the glory of heaven to selflessly give His own life for You and me.
We are here, not to become powerful, wealthy and famous but to serve others in love. Our lives are defined by kindness to others, and those little insignificant acts of kindness are what will most be remembered by others after we are gone.
Lord Jesus, You set the pattern for us of a life of love. You taught it throughout Your Word, and You inspire it, literally breathing it into us by Your Holy Spirit. Let the fruit of Your Spirit so define my life that Your character is seen in me. Amen.
Pastor Dan Giles