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BodyLife 101

Here’s to all who feel used, overlooked, unnoticed, under-appreciated—maybe even unneeded!

When we think of the Book of Acts and the amazing impact of the infant Church and the sacrifices that were made by her early leaders, some names come immediately to our minds—Peter, John, Barnabas, Saul/Paul, Timothy, and Agrippa. They were big impact kind of people, legendary personalities, and difference makers!

Key places also come immediately into focus—Jerusalem, Samaria, Damascus, and Antioch. These were sites where major events took place and where lives were radically changed.

But in the flow of the narrative, Dr. Luke, the detail-focused historian and writer slipped in a seemingly insignificant person and place, almost as a footnote on the page. “Now in Joppa there was a certain disciple named Tabitha; this woman was abounding with deeds of kindness and charity, which she did continually…” (Acts 9:36) There it is. Nearly overshadowed by the grand and glorious story of the stunning and unexpected salvation of enemy-number-one, Saul of Tarsus. Who doesn’t get excited to read about THAT conversion?! But Dr. Luke picks up on an incredible story that took place many miles removed from that historic event. It’s a sea-side village only previously familiar because of the rebellious preacher who snagged passage on a merchant ship to try to run away from God rather than preach a grace-laced gospel message to brutal human butchers in Nineveh. Joppa, the insignificant village, is home to an unsung heroine of the faith. And had that dear sister not have fallen ill and died, we would likely still not know her name! “And when he (Peter) had come, they brought him into the upper room; and all the widows stood beside him weeping, and showing all the tunics and garments that Dorcas (Tabitha) used to make while she was with them.” (Acts 9:39) So significant were her deeds of encouragement, those she had impacted could not rest until they had done the best they could do on her behalf. They sent for Peter in hopes that through him God would raise her again from the dead!

Feeling used, overlooked, unnoticed, under-appreciated—maybe even unneeded? Give yourself to good works and acts of charity. Live selflessly for the Church and the Lord will record your kindnesses and unseen acts of sacrificial serving in the permanent book of HIS-story!

Here’s a “shout-out” to the unseen and unsung heroes! That team of faithful servants who do the things noone notices UNLESS noone does them—the church cleaning team, the preschool teachers and workers, the jail and prison Bible teachers, the ones who go into the Youth Detention Center and encourage young people by loving them for Jesus’ sake, the counselors who must keep their appointments confidential, the prayer warriors who talk about lots of people—but only to the Lord, the facility development and maintenance team, the guy who rides the lawn-mower every week to keep the landscape looking nice, these and many other gracious servants. The humble support-team members who need no fanfare, seek no fame, and find their satisfaction in simply knowing they did their best to encourage others. In doing so, they brought great honor to HIS glorious name.

See you Sunday, Church!
Pastor Tom