Hands of Dorcus Thursday

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Dorcas, or Tabitha which is the Aramaic rendering of the same name, in the Bible lived in the town of Joppa, a city on the coast of the Mediterranean Sea. She was such a giving person who made things, especially clothing, for the poor in Joppa. 

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Dorcas was known for her good works and acts of love for the poor (Acts 9:36); she was much loved in the community of Joppa. When she became ill and died, the believers who knew Dorcas heard that Peter was in the nearby town of Lydda, and they sent for him. When Peter arrived at the home where Dorcas’ body had been laid out, he went up to see the body. There were many widows there, weeping. They all showed Peter “the robes and other clothing that Dorcas had made while she was still with them”—tangible evidence of Dorcas’ loving service (Acts 9:39).

What happened next is proof that our God is full of glorious, unrestrained power: “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 took her by the hand and helped her to her feet. Then he called for the believers, especially the widows, and presented her to them alive. This became known all over Joppa, and many people believed in the Lord” (Acts 9:40–42).

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Peter’s motive, at least in part, for raising Dorcas to life may have been for the sake of the widows and others in Joppa who needed the help Dorcas could provide. The resurrection of Dorcas, and her ministering to the poor and needy,  was also a major reason so many people in Joppa believed. This miracle performed in the name of the Lord led many to faith in Christ.

Dorcas’ hands are a wonderful example of how we are to meet the needs of those around us. Christians are to “continue to remember the poor” (Galatians 2:10). Part of “religion that God our Father accepts” is “to look after orphans and widows in their distress” (James 1:27). Dorcas practiced showing Christ through the deeds she did. 

How are we showing our hands working for the Lord? Would we have enough influence to have a whole town mourning for us? Let’s use our hands today to show Jesus to the world!!!!

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The Heart of Hannah Monday

Sweet Baby Toes

Hannah of the Bible was truly a virtuous woman. Her story will flood your emotions. 

Hannah’s name has the beautiful and attractive meaning of “gracious” or “graciousness” or “favor.” Hannah was the wife of Elkanah and was barren for she had no child, no family. True, she had a devout husband who loved her, and bestowed richer gifts upon her than he did upon his other wife, but she was childless. Comforting her yearning heart Elkanah said, “Am I not better to thee than ten sons?” Hannah, however, longed for a son out of her own womb to love and fondle. As the years went by her agony became more intense, and her barrenness was a greater burden because of the jealousy and heartlessness of her rival, Peninnah, who frequently tantalized Hannah for being childless. But true to her name, she manifested the grace of self-control amid the cruel chidings and reproaches of Peninnah, “her adversary who provoked her sore, and made her to fret.” Can we wonder that Hannah referred to herself as, “a woman of a sorrowful spirit”? Jealousy had taken hold of Peninnah, but not of Hannah. Although the Lord had “shut up her womb” her heart was still open toward Him.

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But even childless, Hannah did not stop praying. Even barren, she still believed, and her pain found a refuge in prayer. In God’s house, she besought the Creator to open her barren womb and give her a son. How moving is the picture of Hannah pouring out her soul before God in His house and vowing that if He would give her a son, then she would give him back to God for His exclusive use! She bargained with God, and kept her bargain. She took her particular sorrow to God, and prayed, not that Peninnah’s joy might be less, but that He would take away the cause of her own anguish. She gave herself to prayer, and in the presence of God her sorrow burst its bonds.

The old priest Eli, not meaning to be unkind when he saw Hannah’s lips moving and yet heard no words being expressed, thought her to be drunk and upbraided her for coming into God’s house in such a condition. Yet Hannah never faltered before God. Her heart remained pure !!

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We know the end of the story – Hannah did receive an answer to her prayer. God granted her wish, and the yearned – for child arrived and she called his name Samuel, which means, “asked of the Lord.”

hannah-samuel_1327692_tmbWe see Hannah as a woman of powerful prayer and faithfulness in keeping her promises to God. She teaches us the proper way to keep our heart and view our troubles and our adversaries even in the darkest times.

How’s your heart today?

Are you in the midst of hard times and dark days? Keep your heart right, just like Hannah,  before the Lord !!!!

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How to Really Show Love to Your Kids !!

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Since Valentine’s Day is a couple of weeks away – we are going to step away from our Mary’s Heart and Martha’s Hand series for this week and focus on – Your Family !!!!small heart WB

Although Valentine’s Day is typically considered a time for expressions of “romantic love,”  it’s also a great opportunity to connect with your kids to let them know how important they are to you and how much you love them.

page-break-symbol brown1.) Notes in unexpected places – tape it on their bedroom ceiling, tuck it in their lunch box, slip it under their cereal bowl, lay it on their pillow at night, drop it in their sneakers. Even if your little one can’t read yet, you can draw them a picture. Your children may not express their enthusiasm about your notes or even acknowledge getting them, but know that writing notes to them will impact their lives and always be remembered.

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2.) Stickers – Stickers are cheap, quick, and popular with kids of all ages. Buy many sheets of stickers in advance and then put them on your kids’ shirts before they go to school. Tell them that whenever they see the sticker, they can remember that you love them!small heart WB

3.) Journal – Buy a special notebook that your child picks out. Every day, write down their favorite thing they did that day. They will be able to read this over later in life and will cherish it, and best of all, it literally only takes a minute or less. If you get into the routine of doing it at the same time every day, like dinner time, it will be easy to remember.

kiss box WB4.) Kiss Box – This is an empty box that they can decorate. You can put a kiss “into” it when you leave for work or to go out. Tell them that if they ever miss you, they can open the box and take out a kiss. There is a great picture book – The Kiss Box, that you can read with your child if they like the kiss box idea. (disclosure – this is an affiliate link and we will receive a small percentage of the price you pay for this precious book. Thank you in advance for your support !!)

5.) Special Signal – You make up a special signal with your child that means “I love you.” Your child will enjoy thinking up their own special signal, and whenever one of you does the signal, the other should respond. Different parents and sibling pairs can all make up their own special signals.

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6.) Special Song – Make up a little song for your child based on a melody you love, that is only for you and her. For example: You are my Amanda, my only Amanda, you make me happy when skies are gray, you’ll never know dear, how much Mommy loves you, please don’t take my Amanda Bear away.

7.) Be present – When you’re watching your son play soccer, watch the game Watching sports WBand cheer him on. When you’re playing Go Fish with your daughter, put your cell phone away and just focus on the game. Kids intuitively know when your attention is elsewhere and that makes them feel less important to you. Put the focus on your kids and watch them soak it up!

 

 

8.) Just tell them – This sounds obvious. But you can never tell someone you love them too often. All people love to hear that they are important, and that small heart WBthey are doing things that make you happy. Think about the last time you praised your child for doing something right instead of scolded him for doing something wrong. That praise reinforces to your child that they are loved.

9.) Remind them how much God loves them. We can’t properly express love to our children without knowing that God is love, and that He loves us completely and unconditionally. Tell your kids often how much God loves them – all the time !!!!

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10.) Take them out on dates – A date involves time spent one-on-one trying to learn more about a person, talking, asking questions, communicating, building small heart WBrelationships. Why not date our kids? Going on regular dates with our kids will open lines of communication and build strong relationships that will whether the good and bad times in life. If you can talk easily now, you’ll be able to talk when it really counts.

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Showing love shouldn’t be relegated to Valentine’s Day particularly when it comes to your family. Children who are secure in knowing that they are loved by their parents or caregivers are free to go on with their lives with a full heart and self-confidence. And by focusing on showing love to our family on this special day it will become much more of a habit – and a great one at that !!!!

Happy Valentine’s Daysmall heart WB

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Ways To Say – I Still Do with FREE labels

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Since Valentine’s Day is a couple of weeks away – we are going to step away from our Mary’s Heart and Martha’s Hand series for this week and focus on – Our Family !!!!

 

 

 

Nothing is ever said in the Bible about either Mary or Martha having a husband. In fact since the Bible states that they both seem to live in the same house as their brother Lazarus it appears that they both were single. They may have lived there under their brother’s protection or since the Bible, several times, calls the home where they all lived, Mary and Martha’s House, one or both of them may have been a widow.

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But the Bible does have a lot to say about husbands and the relationship, we as wives, need to cultivate with our precious partners !!!! And since Valentine’s Day is right around the corner what better way to honor our husbands than to show them our love.

         “Every Wise woman builds her house, but the foolish tears it down with her own hands”

                                       (Proverbs 14:1 Amplified Bible)

The word “house” in Proverbs is much more than the building you live in. It is broader than that. It describes a family and/or estate. A wise woman can greatly improve a marriage, family, and home. A woman is either a crown to her husband or rottenness in his bones.(Proverbs12:4) She is a source of strength and love to her husband. Now I should be expressing my love to my husband everyday but we all know that there are days that “things” get in the way so I want to use Valentine’s Day to go above and beyond for my husband !!! Gifts don’t have to cost a lot of money but just show how much we value our man as the leader, provider, spiritual head, great hugger, fixer of everything that goes wrong around the house, and the guy that goes out on Saturday morning to get a “big” paper and a roll, as my husband Tom does. So here are eight gift ideas to let your love show on that day set aside for special people in our lives. Most of them don’t cost a lot but will fill that man in your life up with overflowing love !!!!

1) How about slipping some decorated Valentine cookiesValentines Cookies 004 into his lunch or briefcase. Nothing says “I love you” like sweets. The simple act of baking homemade cookies will tell your husband that you thought of him. And he will be the hero of the break room.

2) Write your man a love note and tell him all the reasons why you love him. Men like to hear, in words, why we care so much for them. Sometimes men feel useless or separated from you and the family. Thank him for all he does for you. 

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