Now there was at Joppa a certain disciple named Tabitha, which by interpretation is called Dorcas…
When even the old coloured woman Katy, who earned her own livelihood; who sold cakes from day to day; who in her lifetime took forty children out of the poor house, and taught them trades, and bound them out in places of prosperity; who took no airs upon herself; who lived on the abundance of her poverty — when she died out of her sphere nobody thought to ask, "What has become of her?" She was buried, perhaps, so obscurely that no person could say, "I am sure here is where her old rattle-bones lie." But there went up heavenward a radiant procession, amidst an outburst of song, heralding the approach of some bold conqueror, crownless and sceptreless. It was the resurrected spirit of this servant of God. She lived at the bottom here, but there she lives in eternal fame. At last she broke into her crown of light, and ascended her throne, and took her sceptre. Thou that art doing noble things and asking no praise; thou that art living to do good because it is sweet to do good, and be like Christ, and bear His cross, and walk with Him in sorrow, go up, thy Christ waits for thee. And come down, thou hoary head of power that on earth art despoiling God's fair creation as food for thy lowest appetites, and living in selfishness for thyself alone; there is no road between thee and God that does not break short on the gulf between earth and heaven. The last shall be first, and the first shall be last. Seek for glory, but be careful what kind of glory you seek. Work for fame, but look out that you work for the fame that addresses itself to the top of the brain, instead of that which addresses itself to the bottom.
(H. W. Beecher.)
Parallel VersesKJV: Now there was at Joppa a certain disciple named Tabitha, which by interpretation is called Dorcas: this woman was full of good works and almsdeeds which she did.