“Now in Joppa there was a disciple whose name was Tabitha, which in Greek is Dorcas. She was devoted to good works and acts of charity. At that time she became ill and died. When they had washed her, they laid her in a room upstairs. Since Lydda was near Joppa, the disciples, who heard that Peter was there, sent two men to him with the request, ‘Please come to us without delay.’ So Peter got up and went with them; and when he arrived, they took him to the room upstairs. All the widows stood beside him, weeping and showing tunics and other clothing that Dorcas had made while she was with them. Peter put all of them outside, and then he knelt down and prayed. He turned to the body and said, ‘Tabitha, get up.’ Then she opened her eyes, and seeing Peter, she sat up. He gave her his hand and helped her up. Then calling the saints and widows, he showed her to be alive. This became known throughout Joppa, and many believed in the Lord.” (Acts 9:36-42)  With Acts 9, as we observed last week, the narrative begins to shift to the apostle, Paul.  But we still have some unfinished business with Peter.  There are many wonderful details in the story of the raising of Tabitha.  I’ll focus on two.  First, Tabitha is a disciple.  Surely it is not that she is the only female disciple, but this is the only time in the New Testament that the word references a woman.  In addition, Tabitha is a (probably wealthy) woman of good works.  So, here we have a wonderful follower of Jesus who has significantly impacted her community.  And yet, she is still subject to death.  Is it any wonder that the community is grief-stricken and wonders if there is anything that Peter might be able to do?  Enter Peter.  You remember him: the blustering and denying and preaching fisherman who has been redeemed and changed by Jesus!  The second point that strikes me about the story is the rather matter-of-fact way in which the miracle unfolds.  No great theatrics; only a prayer, a name called with a simple request and finally a helping hand to steady the newly resuscitated disciple.  Such is life after Easter: disciples are still subject to death, but of far greater consequence, death is subject to our risen Lord.  So how does that influence our lives?  How do we go about the good works that naturally flow from a life redeemed by Jesus?  How do we live in the midst of death accepting the word of life for ourselves even as we offer it to others?  It turns out that Peter’s colossal failures do not prohibit him from being a conduit of the miraculous.  What is then preventing you and me from being the same?  Have a great week!