Women In The Word - NT: Day 22

Tabitha

by

Today's Text: Acts 9:36-43, Proverbs 31:20

In my family, it’s a pretty serious offense to not know how to water ski.

I’m the biggest offender, but I should absolutely win an award for effort. To this day, I can still tilt my head and hear the faintest drip of water, leftover from the summer of 2005.

One blazing day in July, my dad piled our family into a pontoon boat, filling it with fatherly ambition, while my brother and I buckled on our neon life jackets with determination. Our hopes lifted the buoys from the dock, and we set out for that fateful day —the day we would most certainly remember as that time we learned to water ski.

As we approached calm waters, my dad (the seasoned skier) recalled every step: jump in the water, put on your skis, catch the rope, keep your toes up, let the boat pull you, bend your knees, and slowly stand.

My brother went first. He jumped in the water, attached his skis, caught the rope, pointed his toes forward, allowed the boat to pull him, bent his knees, slowly stood… then fell. It was then we realized he’d missed a crucial piece of information: when you fall, LET GO OF THE ROPE! Leading with his determination, my brother hung on, his body slapping against the waves and his lips receiving water by the mouthful.

When it was my turn, I decided to take notes from my brother’s wipeout, vowing to use my own strength instead of that rascally rope. And although I was technically doing everything right, I was quick to ditch the one thing that could truly help me stand.

Tabitha was also a girl who liked to do things the right way, but her fruit was more eternal than water skiing. The first time we hear her name, we learn “she was always doing good works and acts of charity” (Acts 9:36). How’s that for a first impression? As far as good reputations go, Tabitha seems to have one of the best. But in her death, the story quickly shifts from matters of her hands to matters of her heart.

When Tabitha dies, her loved ones call upon Peter, their last chance of hope. He prays over her death bed, then says, “Tabitha, get up.” And she does. She opens her eyes and sits up! She is alive, and it’s a miracle!

Okay, hold up. Can I confess something here? Talking about miracles makes me antsy. But let’s not hear this passage and think, “Well, sure, she must have been worthy of God’s attention.” This is no miracle for miracle’s sake; it’s the living Gospel on display, the resurrection story of every believer for all to see.

Tabitha tightly held onto the Truth, and it pulled her into life!

I wish I could tell you that my tendency to toss necessary things to the side ends with the water skiing rope, but I’m guilty of cheapening and rejecting the Gospel every single day. I need to be reminded daily that it’s the only thing that can pull me out of darkness, out of sin, and out of the grave.

Sister, as we read and receive this Truth, may I repeat Peter’s words to you today?

Get up.

Get up, because the Good News is alive in you, pumping through your veins, awakening each breath, and calling you to sit up in the sovereign Hands of Truth.

May we allow ourselves to be pulled by the Gospel today, the only thing on which we can stand.

 

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  • alwaysfaith

    get up to gospel…. its sooo refreshing to relearn that the gosoel is running in my veins…. thank you god jesus.

  • Andrea Z.

    Tabitha served and she served hard! And when she was no longer alive all the women and people that she served cried out for her life, which is a beautiful song of Community. Tabitha used her gifts for the kingdom and she made a lasting impact on all of these people and God blesses her with new life. Good word!

  • May we be known as “full of good works and acts of charity” to the great glory of God who has created us in Christ Jesus to do those good works.

  • Kasey Summers

    Love this!! We always have a purpose for each day! To share Christ! When it’s hard for me to get out of the bed, I remind myself why I need to and its a lot easier. The Gospel not only brings purpose, but joy, peace, and contentment. “Get up, because the Good News is alive in you, pumping through your veins, awakening each breath, and calling you to sit up in the sovereign Hands of Truth.”

  • AshleyAylsworth

    Get up…Be the difference…Share the Good News…Awake…For she is clothed in strength and dignity and she can laugh at the times to come. Tabitha, and many other women, beautifully illustrate the picture of a Godly woman for us to model. Thanks for this, SRT :)

  • Such a blessing to be encouraged by and pray for you sweet women who are along for this great study. I find such comfort in knowing more about those who have gone before in the faith AND in knowing there are many walking it out with me today! Praise the Lord for his everlasting goodness.

  • Dahni Alcaraz

    I adore St. Dorcas! I got to know quite a bit about her on my ACTS Retreat this summer (if you haven’t been on one, I HIGHLY suggest it!) She was a woman of nobility but instead of spending that money on herself, she spent her time making and providing beautiful clothing for the poor. It’s inspiring to hear of these good deeds and though we may not see it often in our time, simply being able to feel the need to get up and do things for others is a great feeling. She was just amazing and it’s so nice to see her in this list we have.

  • Tabitha E.

    This is my name, this is my story and so much encourgement to me at this time in my life. "Tabitha held onto the TRUTH, and it pulled her into life." I believe and I receive….

    • Tabitha

      It’s my name too :)
      My parents chose this name for me after I was resuscitated from cardiac arrest as a newborn baby. 11 years later I discovered my second new birth. :)

      • Tabitha E.

        Amazing! Tabitha thank you for sharing. Praise God that our Savior is in the business of saving us….

  • Arrie Cole

    I never noticed before how Tabitha was a woman who cared about the needy. At her death it appears that she was surrounded by women whose lives she had touched by sewing clothes for them. Tabitha’s faith motivated her to do something to show God’s love. Tabitha’s resurrection as a picture of new life in Christ is another point I missed before. Thank you for teaching this so well!

  • God must be trying to tell me something because the sermon at my church on Sunday was titled “I say to you…get up!” We talked about when Jesus had compassion on the widow and raised her dead son to life and we have that power in us because of the Holy Spirit! Oh but how quickly I forget and let satan tell me I don’t have THAT kind of power. I say no more! It’s time for us to get up in the name of Jesus! We serve a delivering God. If He can deliver Jesus out of the hands of death He can surely deliver us out of whatever it is we might be going through. Thank you for this word today!

  • martinbeks

    I think these post-resurrection lessons are hitting me harder than the pre-resurrection. Yesterday and today are cutting me to the quick, and I feel like God wants me to stand up and take notice, especially of Sapphira and Tabitha. Wonder what tomorrow will bring.

  • Please pray for my mom Ruth, in the fight for her life in the ICU with a very rare form of lung cancer. Praying the story of tabitha over her today.

    • Beverly

      Praying for you, your mom, and your family, Emily. That the Lord would comfort you and give you His peace.

    • Alexis

      Prayers for trust and wise doctors.

  • Caroline

    Amen!!!!! We are ALIVE!
    http://www.in-due-time.com

  • Kay Tallman

    Our pastor often says he needs to preach the gospel to himself everyday. So thankful Jesus meets me where I am. And He gladly does it. Not grudgingly but gladly.

  • Carly Wilke

    Waking up today I had a feeling today was going to be something special!! I just knew God had something planned. And here we are, speaking life to each other!!! I work at Starbucks and today i opened, and there are times when all I want is to not be at work. But then today’s reading happened. Now I know that God uses every part of your life to speak life to others. I pray God gives me the words to say. I pray God gives you the strength and courage to speak life to not only the ones you know and love, but also the strangers you may work with, or walk by. Let us love other with a wild love!!!

  • Amanda, I am so sorry for your loss. Grief is such a powerful emotion and sneaks up on you at the strangest times. I recently lost my son, and “getting up” is indeed a part of the struggle. I will be lifting you up to today friend.

    • Christy

      Faith I am so sorry and praying for you that His strength will lift you up in your pain. Love you sister.

    • Amanda

      Faith, praying God’s strength for you. May He bring peace and comfort to you now and always.

    • Alexis

      Prayers for comfort.

  • Bethany R

    “Do not grow weary in doing good.” My 7mo son was up more than usual in the night, and it was really hard to “get up.” How encouraging to read about new life, new energy and new mercies through the power of our Lord!

  • Anna Buchanan

    This devotional points me back to Ephesians 5 where Paul calls us to wake up. Awake my soul. Be reminded of your maker’s faithfulness. My own productivity and efficiency cannot save me. I am incapable of keeping it all under control. I must trust the Gospel of grace alone.

  • What a great reminder that not only has Jesus risen from the dead but one day we will too! He has conquered death for us. Amazing.

  • Frankly, I wouldn't want to be Tabitha. Once with the Lord in heaven, I certainly wouldn't want to come back to earth. After all, this is not home…I'm just a traveler passing through. As much as I do enjoy the good gifts the Lord has given me, I would much rather be with the Lord than be here. Every story in the Scripture relates to Jesus-the whole book is about him, and I don't see this miracle as having anything to do with Tabitha's faith. Jesus raised people from the dead who he didn't know and didn't believe in him. Resurrection is about Jesus, and in Tabitha's case, the Father putting his power on display to strengthen and grow the baby church and bring glory to God. He just happened to use Peter and Tabitha as characters in his storyline.

    • ~ B ~

      Absolutely agree! I think the only reflection to Tabitha's faith would have been in her reputation, not necessarily in her rising, except that Peter was moved by how she lived out her faith in life and how it affected those around her and by raising someone with such faith, who practiced good works, it speaks much greater than raising someone in this circumstance unknown. The vast number of people that mourned her and knew her allowed word of the miracle to spread broadening the reach of the gospel message. This would have been greatly different had He used Peter to raise someone un-liked, unkind or unknown. But ultimately, God used this to change Peter's direction and move in a big way on the early church. ~ B

    • Great point, Rebecca. Often times we get distracted by the characters and forget the storyline. It was never really about Tabitha.

      Also, It didn't even occur to me what it would be like to be Tabitha, to see His full glory revealed and then realize there is more work to do on earth. It will be interesting to one day learn what her life was like after these events.

    • shereadstruth

      I agree, Rebecca! Grateful for the powerful pull of The Gospel (not Tabitha's own strength) on display! Thanks for chiming in today!

      xoxo-Kaitlin

  • "I need to be reminded daily that it’s the only thing that can pull me out of darkness, out of sin, and out of the grave." Yassssss! Thank you Lord!!!

  • Never have I needed the reminder to “get up” more than I do now. The past week has been one of loss, heartache, and fear. They say miscarriage is a silent suffering – having to say goodbye to a child that you never had the chance to hold in your arms or celebrate with the rest of the world. I’m doing my best to focus on God’s Love and Word, but still my heart aches with fear and questions. Today’s message reminds me that I must “get up” – I have to. I have to trust in Him and allow Him to quiet my fears. I have to let myself be pulled out of this darkness. God is still good. He is my refuge, my safe place, and to move on , I must get up.

    • Susie

      I’m so sorry for your loss but so hopeful for how God always redeems when we choose to look to him and his plan in our time of pain and suffering. Praying for you and your family this morning, Amanda.

    • Anna Buchanan

      Praying for you Amanda

    • Rachel

      I wish I could hug you right now! Thank you for being brave to being open and share how you are experiencing loss. Thank you for encouraging me with how you are turning to God in the midst of your pain…tenderly and honestly. God comforts like no other. I’m praying that you may experience His grace and be comforted in wonderful ways beyond your imagination. He will see you through this my sister in Christ!

    • Kim

      I’m praying every day for women just like you. I’m 2.5 years post-miscarriage and faith and support from people that love me are what continue to help me get-up! Right now my “get-up” is trusting that I’ll get to be a mother someday. Thinking of you!

    • April

      Oh Amanda, if I could, I would (((hug))) you and whisper this in your ear. "This is the time to crawl up into your Fathers arms and allow Him to comfort you. Miscarriage may be silent, but it is far from pain-less. It's okay to mourn the life, the dreams, the possibilities of time spent with your child here on earth. Yes, you will need to 'get up' and move on, when it's time – but your Heavenly Father, our Creator God, created you with feelings and it's okay to mourn. He is with you in your mourning, this is when He carries you."

    • Alexis

      Prayers of love and comfort for you.

    • Courtney C.

      I'm very sorry for your loss. Praying for you.

    • Angela

      I’m so sorry, Amanda. Please know I’m praying for you and sending lots of love and hugs your way. xoxo

    • Kylee

      I’m praying for you! So sorry for your loss…I can’t wait to see the day when all our babies greet us in heaven ❤️❤️❤️

  • Kaitlin, this was a great devo but I'm just curious…why does talking about miracles make you antsy?

    • shereadstruth

      Hi Rhonda! Thanks for asking!

      In this story, I think it would be easy to miss the point by thinking Tabitha's works made her worthy of a miracle. I don't want to view God as the means to an end of a miracle, but as the ultimate end, miracle or not! I'm only antsy because of the lies my sinful flesh tends to believe about miracles! Grateful for the power and truth of The Gospel!

      xoxo-Kaitlin

  • What a word today! To get up when called. This morning I felt the urge to get up, but I needed more sleep. Well I felt more drained afterwards. Then I wake up and this is the devotional for today. Yeah. Talk about conviction. My prayer is to rise when called.

  • Oh do i EVER love this, Kaitlin! May I allow myself to be pulled by the Gospel today – the ONLY THING I can stand on.

  • Stephanie Doig

    Kelly Smith – those are wise words. Jami – my prayers are also with you. Joni and Alicia, may I suggest that you watch Joyce Meyer’s talk on Psalm 23. She talks about the lies that we believe and one of them is that we are not worthy. None of us are. Not one. All have sinned and fallen short BUT that is the gospel. We are saved by Him who has the power to raise the dead to life. When you hear Satan tell you you are not worthy, look at all the ways you fail, rejoice and say right back at him – that is the good news dude – Jesus saves us anyway! You are made right with Christ because of what He did, not because you do good things. I think perhaps it is all about motives…. We do good because the Holy Spirit in us leads us to do them, what I mean by that is that it is not our own strength or our own goodness to make God love us more. He loves us fully and completely and because you believed you were made right with God. You are right with God! We love others because He loves us. It doesn’t come from us, but from Him.

  • I worry very much that I am not saved because I don't understand what it really means to use the gospel/believe the gospel in a way that transforms me out of my fear (really big fear, even panic). What do I do so I can experience it pulling me out of darkness, out of sin, and out of the grave. I think I believe. I definitely want to believe. Just stuck.

    • Stephanie Doig

      Alicia – I had just the same fear. I know what you are going through. You can beat it! I did. I went through the valley and God was there with me, although I was still stuck in sin. He saw me through. Then he showed me that He is good, only good, nothing he does is to harm me or to be mean to me or to test me to show me how bad/weak I am. He is my good shepherd. Please listen to Joyce Meyer on podcast. I do in the car, while I clean house and it has made me stronger. The fear is Satan attacking you because you are saved. All you need to do, and don’t be afraid because Jesus is bigger, better and stronger, is when he comes at you with fear, every time he does, you tell Him I am the righteousness of God in Christ Jesus, Neither height nor depth, nor Angels or demons can separate me from the love of God in Christ Jesus. Back off Satan! You are a liar! God’s plan is to prosper me, not to harm me, to give me a future and a hope. You can do it! He will flee from you.

    • Mimi

      Alicia, just keep searching/spending time with the Lord-He alone knows His timing for you! Allow Him to fill you up during this time! And look around you/be quiet and see Him working! He Is There! Praying for you!

    • Tammi

      Alicia, salvation is the faith and decision to accept Jesus Christ as our Savior. I invite you to read through the "Roman Road" scriptures ( Romans 3:23, Romans 6:23, Romans 5:8, Romans 10:9-10, Romans 10:13). To be saved we have to realize that we are sinners. Then we have to accept by faith, believe in our hearts and confess with our mouths that God sent his son to die for our sins and that He then raised Jesus from the dead. If you have done these things then you are saved.
      Your concern about not understanding what it really means to use the gospel/believe the gospel to be transformed…this is the growth part of being a Christian. It is something we strive to for as Christians. Devotionals such as this one, reading the Bible, joining a Bible based fellowship, prayer and having trust and faith all help you to grow to understand. It is a continual process for me and for all Christians as I think you can see with the other posts. Read Philippians 3:12-14. It is a good description of our pursuit to be more like Jesus.

      • Alicia021668

        Thank you for your reply. My fear is that I have just gone through the motions in those steps. I don't see fruit in my life. I allow myself to skip church. I don't think I believe from my heart–it's just in my head. How do you get it in your heart where it flows out to be Christlike and loving toward people. My actions are completely selfish and I feel I am as dry as a dead log.

        There have been times, when I am afraid, that I have turned to the Lord, been faithful at church, and washed myself in His Word. That lasts just until the turmoil is over and I perceive that everything is okay. That's why it seems fake to me–God is my concierge.

        How do you burst through that?

        • Marilyn

          I know I'm coming late to this conversation, Alicia, but I want to reassure you that being a Christian is not a checklist of things to do: go to church, read the Bible, have a daily quiet time, etc… Those things should eventually flow out of our desire to know Christ fully, but being a follower of Christ is really about having an attitude of full dependence on Him. It's not us "using" the gospel to transform ourselves, it's allowing Him to work in us. We can't "wash" ourselves in His Word. We come to Him humbly, knowing there's nothing we can do on our own.

          I encourage you to pray. "You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart." (Jer. 29:13) He is faithful. When we ask Him to cleanse us, dwell in us, transform us, He will. We may not see it at first, but if we allow Him to work in us, we will start to see a difference; maybe in baby steps, but slowly, over time, we become more like Him.

          I have gone through times where I feel dry and worthless, too, but when I pray that the Holy Spirit would fill me and use me, it's amazing how He shows up! Don't base your faith on your feelings. Base it on the truth of His Word. As Tammi pointed out, we can rely on the promises in Romans: "…if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved…. For everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved." (Romans 10:9, 13)

    • MNmomma (heather)

      You are God's precious child…..prayers for you this morning Alicia!

    • Anna Buchanan

      There is a beautiful song called “Help My Unbelief” that will probably resonate with you. I listen to it a lot on spotify. I believe Red Mountain Church sings it.

    • Rachel

      Hi Alecia,
      This verse always encouraged me: Mark 9:24b “….I do believe, but help me with my unbelief.” When you read the entire story in Mark 9, you’ll see it’s a father of a sick child asking Jesus to heal him. I love the father’s honesty and humbleness. He wants to believe (honest) and he asked (humble) the very one who could help him with his unbelief: Jesus! This passage reassured me it’s okay to ask Jesus to help me believe and increase my faith. God is the AUTHOR and FINISHER of our faith. When you ask Him for help, you are on the right road. The Romans Road scriptures are excellent too – read those and memorize them to help you remember God’s gospel truth! God’s word always defeats Satan’s lies. Love you my honest and humble sister in Christ!

    • Alexis

      Good morning Alicia. Like so many of the ladies have shared becoming familiar with the gospels takes time and fellowship. I was raised in a church that didn’t have bible study or fellowship outside of Sunday. But I still had my faith. As an adult I joined a different church and bible studies. The bible, especially the NT is amazing! Every time you read it something new is discovered. Usually something that you need to hear, learn, be blessed with that day. Keep reading, keep being in fellowship with other believers and mostly trust Our Father to guide you to what you need each day. Pray…. And trust, He is your Shepard and will not loose you. Release your fear to Him and see what happens. So very glad you are with us!

    • Kate

      Praying for you, Alicia! Your desire to believe is itself good, so keep striving. God loves us and desires us to be in relationship with him, and we get to know him by spending time with him in habitual prayer and reading the Word. When I was going through a particularly dark part of my life (full of fears and panic), I sometimes questioned how much I really believed because I didn’t feel relief from my fear or anxiety. But these dark times actually make us more Christ-like if we persist in bringing ourselves – with everything, good and bad – to the Lord. So keep going! Stay committed to your time with him each day. The gospel is already transforming your heart even if you don’t feel it yet.

    • Kellie

      Hi Alicia,

      A favorite passage of mine is John 10-it says that we are held in the hands of God, and nothing can take us away from him. It has often brought comfort to my heart when I’ve wrestled with these thoughts; praying it brings peace to you today!

  • Get up. The call to get up and stand boldly in the Gospel.
    I feel God calling me to stand, to face a tough situation and my fears this morning. I am terrified because it requires confrontation, which is not my favorite thing. But I know that what I need to do is right and wise and mature. That He will give me a voice. He will give me the courage to take action rooted in growth of my character and drawing nearer to His heart. And even though I’m shaking inside, I know this is all the more reason to trust in the Lord’s strength.
    And so I pray and request your prayers, ladies. :) That today will be the day I stand and trust Him to guide my steps into His plan, giving me boldness to face this thing and His steadfast peace to replace my anxieties. He is working all things out for my good and His glory. All I have to do is get up. Stand in His Truth. Because no matter what happens He will protect me in His great love and grace.
    Praying we can all have the courage and strength to stand boldly in His Truth and love today. Wherever we are, in whatever situation. No matter what, He is good.

    • Jess

      I know that feeling well- knowing you have to do something, have the confrontation even though you fear it. I'm praying for you right now, Beverly, that you would have the peace and the right words to say for your confrontation to be resolved. May Gods grace cover you today!

    • Maya

      Praying for you, Beverly!

    • BamaRD

      I have so been in your shoes. Struggling to decide if what you feel you need to do is Gods will or your need to do something. I stepped out and took the risk, knowing in my heart it was Gods will. What I did not expect was the result. A crushing disappointment that was His answer, not mine. Three years later I can see so clearly His hand to bring me closer to Him AND do the right thing. If it had gone the way I wanted it to go, I would have probably thought I had done the right thing, not Him. I love the line from the Hillsong title above, "I touched the skies when my knees hit the ground" . Praying peace and strength for you and the coming days. Reach for the sky!

    • ~ B ~

      Prayerful over your heart today Beverly. I, too, do not like confrontation. It is not difficult for me within my immediate family, but beyond that I struggle, which I think reflects my heart and how sneakily the enemy can deceive us. Done correctly, discipline, correction and confrontation are a form of love. I am thankful that you stand ready to face your fears in a tough situation and trust and hope that God will be revealed in it. ~ B

    • MNmomma (heather)

      Prayers lifted for you this morning…

    • Alexis

      Prayers that God be with all parties today and loving solutions are found.

  • One of the things that sticks with me is that God used Tabitha, a woman, *her* life and *her* death to be such a significant part of the early church. This story is what propelled a new and swift change in the early movement of the christian church. This story is very significant in Peter's life, bringing about change in the direction of his ministering. It shows so much, but one of those things is that God can use anyone to bring about change for Him AND He can resurrect anything. I see so much faith in Peter in this story, not only did he believe that God could heal that situation, but he so embraced Christ, so walked out Christ's call on his life, Christ's actions, that he did exactly what Christ would have done, what Christ did when he healed the young girl. So Tabitha's story brings about several questions for me; Do I believe God can truly use me? Am I walking out my faith in a way that can bring about change? Am I reflecting Jesus in my actions?

    My prayer is that my life will glorify God, that my behaviors, like Peter, imitate what I've seen Christ do. That when I feel undervalued as a woman, as a mom, as a wife, that I remember God used a woman, a probable widow, in such a great way. That even as I encounter difficulties I believe God will use them and bring life to otherwise dead circumstances! ~ B

    • Emily H

      Wow what a perspective you just added to today’s reading. That encouraged me greatly. Thank you for sharing!

    • MNmomma (heather)

      Oh B, your questions and insight hit me so powerfully this morning. Thank you! Do I *TRULY* believe that God can use me? ME……and if I believe that, am I going to get out of the way and LET HIM? Will I follow? Do others see Jesus in my words and actions?

      Very thought provoking this morning…..

    • Leenda324

      Amen!

    • Alexis

      Thank you for great questions.

  • Kelly_Smith

    "She was full of good works and acts of charity" and, yet, she died. She did the right thing and still got sick and died. When you move to the end of the story, you see the purpose in her pain: "and many believed in the Lord" (9:42). Tabitha worked to glorify God in her life, but she also glorified God in her death. Discipleship is about more than doing good things, it is about laying your life down for the sake of the gospel.

    This song has been in my head this morning: "I found my life when I laid it down . . . I touched the sky when my knees hit the ground." Touch the Sky, Hillsong https://youtu.be/y1RQciil7B0

    • Candacejo

      Awesome, Kelly. It's part of life, right? The good die right along with the not-so-nice people. The good get sick just as the mean and crusty people. It's LIFE. But if your living glorifies God then your death will do the same and many will believe in the Lord. THAT is what it's all about isn't it? Laying down your own life for the Gospel's sake. ♥

      • Alexis

        Wonderful words, Kelly and Candacejo. Thank you. I especially like : “But if your living glorifies God then your death will do the same and many will believe.” Thank you both.

    • ~ B ~

      Love that song Kelly. One of my new faves! ~ B

    • debragohn

      Love that song, also!

    • MNmomma (heather)

      I absolutely LOVE that song….one of my favorites ever!

  • carlybenson

    Honestly, I struggled with this passage a bit. It's obvious that Tabitha was a lovely, kind lady who had faith in God, but I'm not sure that's why he raised her from the dead- as if she somehow deserved it because of her good deeds.
    I'm going to see a friend today who reminds me of Tabitha. She is one of the most kind, caring, thoughtful people I have met, but she has struggled for several years now with eating disorders and mental health issues. I have prayed and prayed, as have others, and there have been answers to prayer- this time last year she attempted suicide four times so I praise God that she is still alive- but she still struggles so much.
    Thank you for the reminder that Tabitha's story reflects the wider Gospel story- "the resurrection story of every believer," that ultimately sickness and death are not the end. In the midst of the things I don't understand, I need to hold to the Gospel today- "the only thing that can pull me out of darkness, out of sin and out of the grave."
    Thank you for the encouragement that the Good News is alive in me. Sometimes I feel so inadequate and don't know how to help but I pray that as Peter spoke words of life to Tabitha, I can do that for my friend today.

    • Ellen

      Carly, no matter how you feel you are not inadequate. You do so much simply by being with your friend, listening to her, talking with her, praying for her and reminding her of God's love for her and His goodness towards her. I pray the encouragement you received from today's devotional will spill over into your friend.

    • ~ B ~

      Awesome Carly. I agree, it wasn't because she was good enough, her resurrection was used to broaden the early church. There is so much more to this story in the big picture than the little bit we read about in this portion of scripture. The realization that God can bring life to anything is certainly news worthy of spreading. I believe that for your friend as well. God can change these circumstances and I am thankful she has you to encourage her, reflect Christ, and pray over her. All hugely important in bringing about change. Prayerful over your friend today! ~ B

    • MNmomma (heather)

      prayers for you and your friend this morning <3

    • Kay Tallman

      Carly has your friend ever had her thyroid hormone levels checked? Sounds far out I know. I've had emotional and mental issues but am finding some relief as I had my thyroid removed and am now on a synthetic hormone

    • carlybenson

      Thanks, I really appreciate all your prayers. She was better today than I have seen her in about the last 4 years which is really encouraging. Kay, I'm not sure if she has- thanks for the suggestion.

  • Arise Tina….
    Arise Tina….

    Get up…Arise…

    Tabitha tightly held onto the Truth, and it pulled her into life!

    Holding tightly to the TRUTH…that it WILL pull me into life…!

    Reminds of this spirit filled song I recently heard that has been my anthem this past week….from the great Priscilla mcgruder…stand on His word…I hope you like it… http://youtu.be/BRKHdbqm2fU

    In spite of everthing you've heard….Stand on His Word..

    Blessings dear sister's today in all you do and say….with love…Tina…xxx

    • Candacejo

      I love that song! I'm sure you've heard her testimony of when she had cancer that her husband found her literally standing on the Bible one day in her bare feet. She said that was all she had the strength to do. I have met her and talked with her a couple of times at conferences, she was the real deal and gone on to meet her reward. In spite of everything you've heard..stand on His Word! ♥

      When you’ve done all that you can
      Stand on His Word
      When you’ve stood all you can stand
      Do what you’ve learned
      Remember all you’ve read is true
      God said He’ll always bring you thru
      In spite of everything you’ve heard
      Stand on His word

      • tina

        What a powerful and amazingly annointed voice she has…I have listened everyday , to all I can find on YouTube…the words , her voice , the power reaches deep in my soul…praising God for the blessing this has been in this season….
        Hugs and love to you, the Sweetheart, and the family dear friend….xxxx

  • kiltsandkale

    I am very moved by Tabatha's reputation this morning. She was known for the goodness and charity she showed to others. What a glorious way to be remembered! What will I be remembered for? I might need to think about priorities this morning.

    "Get up" is another interesting phrase here. I have to stop and ask myself what are the things that I literally and figuratively "get up" for. Well there's work, to eat, to get to my fitness class, to go run, check my Instagram, to meet a friend for coffee, church (sometimes in a whiny manner). Yikes! I'm not convinced this is my best. My prayer is to repent, to invest in MORE of the things that Tabatha did. Goodness and charity. Less of me, and more of these.

    Peace and grace, sisters. x

    • Kelly_Smith

      What do I "get up" for? Oh, friend! Your question hit me between the eyes! I get up for me a lot. I mean, A LOT!! When it is time to get up for others, it is usually with a sigh of being bothered. I'm guessing Tabitha got up and hugged her friends and got right back to good works and acts of charity. Thank you for your thoughts! Praying the Lord works on us each time we get up today!

    • MNmomma (heather)

      What do I "get up" for? LOVE this……. makes me stop and think….so powerful

    • Liz

      I was thinking the same thing reading this. Recently I’ve been struggling with pretty extreme social anxiety recently and I’m realizing I “get up” for people’s approval and not to walk in step with God. I fail to reminder that His approval is all I need and I already have it and always will.

  • “I’m guilty of cheapening and rejecting the Gospel every single day. I need to be reminded daily that it’s the only thing that can pull me out of darkness, out of sin, and out of the grave.”

    Wow. I really needed this. I contantly find myself trading in God’s goodness for a cheap, counterfeit version of His love. I pray that I remember how valuable Christ’s life-giving sacrifice is.

    • Sarah

      Yes, me too. He is so much better. He is eternal. I pray to remember that I need Him and only Him.

  • My prayer is for ME to get up and continue building this life with HIM leading me. Oh, how I fail and feel like I’m not able to do this. I also feel unworthy. I have to push that aside and regain my focus. I sure needed to hear this.

  • I have been feeling like such a failure in parenting lately. My precious ones are all under five and I have a chronic illness. I am stretched beyond the max every day caring for them & lately they are pushing me to the max. All I see on display when I hit that wall is my sin nature. I have been weeping to the Lord. Feeling so dead & so afraid. So inadequate to nurture these precious babes. I needed this reminder that the Gospel is alive in me & that it can pull me out of my sin & out of my fear of failing my children because of my weariness & limitations. I need to get up in faith & trust my Father & trust the Gospel power is still coursing through my soul. Thankful for this reorientation & reminder of hope & power.

    • Alexis

      Jami, my prayers are with you. What lucky children you have, blessed with a Mommy that cares so much for them.

    • german_janne

      Jami, God knew your illness and your weakness. That didn´t prevent him from entrusting you with your little ones. :) In fact, if we are being honest, every mum will admit that we all are far from impeccable in raising up our loved ones … The one who is our strength, will care for our children all the same. This is my hope when I watch my grown-up kids leave for their studies this fall. God will follow them where I can´t … Hugs and prayers from Germany :)

    • tina

      Jami, my heart hurt as I read your words….but as I prayed I was reminded of the 'Footprints' poem…."….You promised me Lord, that if I followed you, you would walk with me, always…But I have noticed that in the most trying periods of my life, there have only been one set of footprints in the sand…Why, when I needed you most have you not been there for me….?"

      THere is my favourite part….

      The Lord replied " The Times when you have seen only one set of footprints…my child…my Jami, is when I carried you…."

      The Lord is with you…Jami, He will not fail you, and YOU will not fail your precious ones…Stand on His Word….

      Prayers and love wrapped in the truth of who we worship…Jesus Christ…xxx

    • Kelly_Smith

      Jami, I tend to have over-confidence in my own abilities. I read the parenting books and follow the steps. Still, my children are disobedient and I see my shortcomings oozing out of them. I wonder how badly I am messing them up. You, however, are parenting from a place of weakness. BUT in our weakness, HE is strong. You depend on God to fill the gaps, to give you strength. I turn away and let God know that "I've got this." I wouldn't wish illness on anyone in the world, but I do envy your position at the feet of Jesus. We would all be better parents if we parented from our weakness and Christ's strength instead of forging ahead in our own perceived strengths! Prayers for you and your precious children who are blessed to call you "Mom!"

    • JennyBC

      I know nothing else to say but that I’m praying for you. Today, I pray that you feel the prayers of your sisters around you and for you like Tabitha had her sisters in the faith praying for her. My heart is tender to you today. Lord, be near to Jami. Let her feel Your pleasure over her as she is mama to her littles. I pray peace and joy over your household today.

    • MNmomma (heather)

      prayers lifted for you sweet one this morning…..love and hugs from Minnesota <3

    • Tammy

      Jami, prayers for you and your precious children. I am sorry you are in a rainy season. The sun will shine again. Parenting is the hardest job in the world no matter your circumstance. Praying for patience, strength, healing, love, and support.

    • TBowe3

      Jami,
      I can’t relate exactly but I have little ones, and traveling husband, and dealt with an ongoing illness that took years to discover, the “why.” A “fighter verse” to sustain me is 2 Corinthians 3:5-6. Praying for you sweet dear.

    • Jan

      I had many stressful days with my four babies. The most difficult was when the boys were 5 and 7 ….and Jesus gave me undiagnosed twin girls. Overwhelmed most days I took a day at a time. I blinked and now my babies are all married adults living their own lives. I am proud and blessed by the choices they have made serving Jesus. I think back and wished I had enjoyed those days more. They are gone way too quickly.

  • Sarah Lahoda

    “May we allow ourselves to be pulled up by the Gospel today…” I love this image of the Gospel pulling me to my feet! And, Hannah, thanks for your words as well! “We’re called to be like Peter, speaking life to the dead all around us.” Such a great line…so true. I’m encouraged. Thank you.

  • Acts9:40 Peter sent them all out of the room; then he got down on his knees and prayed. Turning toward the dead woman, he said, “Tabitha, get up.” She opened her eyes, and seeing Peter she sat up. “He got down on his knees” Peter humbled himself in prayer for his sister disciple and asked God to give her more time. Obviously God was pleased and agreed with Peter. Tabitha must have been much loved by all those that received her kindness and also by Our Father since He released her back to her mission. Dear, Father please guide me to use the talents you have given me to the benefit of others just as Tabitha did. Amen.

  • I wonder how much of this was Tabitha's faith, how much was the faith of those praying for her, and how much was God's sovereignty. One thing's for sure: if we've already been raised to life through Jesus' resurrection, then we're called to be like Peter, speaking life to the dead all around us. This is our role in the story.

    • Dawn

      That. Is. Good. Hannah that is OUCH, but a good ouch – if there is such a thing. I often forget that I'm the Peter for people I encounter daily – family, friend, neighbor, stranger, enemy.

    • Cindy

      I think it was somewhat about Tabitha’s faith and the faith of the others praying, but ultimately about God’s sovereignty.Our pastor has said that the miracles are always meant to point us to Jesus. It demonstates His power and points to his death and resurrection. The miracles also demonstrate how we should respond, like you said, being like Peter speaking life to those around. I’m praying for God to come along side me to be able to speak those words to others as that is not something I am confident to do.

    • MNmomma (heather)

      Speak Life……each and every day…..

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