Tabitha – Arise

By Pastor Juliana T Akinbami

Acts 9: 36 At Joppa there was a certain disciple named Tabitha, which is translated Dorcas. This woman was full of good works and charitable deeds which she did. 37 But it happened in those days that she became sick and died. When they had washed her, they laid her in an upper room. 38 And since Lydda was near Joppa, and the disciples had heard that Peter was there, they sent two men to him, imploring him not to delay in coming to them. 39 Then Peter arose and went with them. When he had come, they brought him to the upper room. And all the widows stood by him weeping, showing the tunics and garments which Dorcas had made while she was with them40 But Peter put them all out, and knelt down and prayed. And turning to the body he said, “Tabitha, arise.” And she opened her eyes, and when she saw Peter she sat up. 41 Then he gave her his hand and lifted her up; and when he had called the saints and widows, he presented her alive.

Tabitha A Woman of Purpose

Acts 9: And all the widows stood by him weeping, showing the tunics and garments which Dorcas had made while she was with them  42 And it became known throughout all Joppa, and many believed on the Lord.

Tabitha, also known as Dorcas, was a woman of purpose. She had a specific ministry to widows. Her story plays a significant role in the Book of Acts. 

Significance in Terms of Purpose:

A major significance of her ministry was that it was a service to the marginalized: Widows in ancient societies, and even today, often lacked economic support and social standing, making them one of the most vulnerable groups. Tabitha’s ministry, which involved making garments for them, was a practical demonstration of love and care. This not only met their physical needs but also affirmed their worth and dignity within the community. We can see her as one who empowered women.

From a broader perspective, Tabitha’s ministry had a significant impact on Evangelism. The miracle of her resurrection by Peter not only affirmed the power of God working through Peter but also led to many believing in Jesus (Acts 9:42). The story of her life and the visible impact of her charity work served as a powerful testimony to the transformative power of the gospel, inspiring hope and faith in the hearts of many.

But despite her good, she died. Despite her immense community impact, she died, and I dare say it was premature. This weekend, we will examine the death of Dorcas in light of the death of purpose.
Life is full of unexpected events and challenges that can significantly impact a person’s dreams and sense of purpose. These disruptions can either temporarily sidetrack an individual or lead to a more profound re-evaluation of their life goals and aspirations. Let’s consider some life events that can erode or challenge a person’s dreams and purpose:

1. Personal Illness or Injury
A severe illness or a debilitating injury can dramatically alter a person’s lifestyle and capabilities, leading them to modify or even abandon previous dreams. The physical and mental toll can shift priorities, often requiring a focus on recovery and adaptation to new limitations.

2. Loss of a Loved One
The death of someone close can have a profound emotional impact, leading to grief that might overshadow personal ambitions. This event can change one’s motivations, making previous goals seem less important or meaningful.

3. Economic Hardship
Financial difficulties can force individuals to set aside their aspirations to focus on immediate needs like securing employment, making ends meet, or dealing with debt. Economic stress can limit opportunities for education, starting a business, or pursuing creative projects.

4. Career Setbacks
Job loss, demotion, or unfulfilled career expectations can lead to a loss of self-esteem and direction. These setbacks can cause individuals to question their skills, choices, and the feasibility of their professional goals.
5. Failed Relationships

The end of significant relationships, whether romantic, familial, or professional, can disrupt personal stability and affect one’s emotional capacity to pursue dreams. The emotional turmoil from such breakups can lead to a reassessment of what one truly desires from life.

6. Burnout
Chronic stress from overworking or from trying to meet excessively high standards can lead to burnout, where individuals feel drained, unable to cope, and disinterested in goals they once pursued passionately. Burnout happens a lot in ministry where you are trying to be available for everyone.

7. Change in Personal Beliefs or Values
Significant shifts in one’s beliefs or value systems can lead to a re-evaluation of one’s dreams. What once seemed important may no longer align with their current worldview or ethical framework, even when they once believed that the dream was from God.
8. Parental or Caregiving Responsibilities

Becoming a parent or needing to care for an ailing family member can significantly redirect one’s focus. The responsibilities may limit the time and energy available to pursue previous interests or professional ambitions.
9. Natural Disasters or Global Crises

Events like earthquakes, pandemics like COVID–19, and economic recession can create broad-scale disruptions, forcing entire communities to alter their lifestyles and aspirations. These events can put survival over personal or professional goals.

10. Technological and Market Changes
Advancements in technology or shifts in the market can render specific skills obsolete or disrupt industries, forcing individuals to adapt or change their career paths unexpectedly. 

How to recognize when you are in slumber?

Recognizing that you might be in a state of slumber concerning your purpose can be challenging. Here are some signs that may indicate you are not fully engaged with your purpose:

1. Lack of Passion: If you feel unenthusiastic or indifferent about your daily activities and long-term goals, it might be a sign that you are not living in alignment with your purpose.

2. Procrastination: Frequently delaying tasks, especially those related to your goals and dreams, can indicate a disconnect from your purpose.
3. Sense of Emptiness
: Experiencing a persistent feeling of emptiness or dissatisfaction, even when everything seems to be going well on the surface.

4. Lack of Direction: Feeling lost or unsure about what steps to take next in life can be a sign that you are not fully awakened to your purpose.

5. Avoidance of Challenges: Purpose often requires growth, which comes through challenges. If you find yourself avoiding challenges and staying in your comfort zone, you might be in slumber.

6. Routine Without Meaning: Going through the motions of life without finding deeper meaning in your activities is a strong indicator.

8. Lack of Growth: Feeling stagnant and not experiencing personal growth or learning can be a sign that you are not actively pursuing your purpose. 


Write down three things you believe God placed on your heart over the years, but for some reason, you have yet to do anything about it, or you started and then stopped.
Now, write down the reasons why you did not accomplish them.
Would you say that you are in slumber with regard to your purpose?


Short version – Father, heal me from every trauma of my past that is hindering me from fulfilling my purpose.

Expanded version

Heavenly Father,

I come before You today with a heart seeking healing and renewal. Lord, You know the burdens I carry, the traumas that linger from my past, and the pain that shadows my days. You understand how these experiences have hindered me, causing doubts and fears that obscure the path You’ve set for me.

Father, in Your mercy, please heal my heart. Wash away the scars of my past traumas with Your love and grace. Let Your Spirit work within me, mend what has been broken, and restore what has been lost. Replace my pain with Your peace and my confusion with Your clarity.

Grant me the strength to rise above these trials and the courage to step forward in faith. Help me to recognize Your presence in every moment, and guide me towards my purpose. Rekindle the passion and joy that once drove my dreams, and allow me to serve You and others with a renewed spirit.

Lord, I trust in Your healing power and believe that You are at work in my life. Lead me away from the shadows of my past and into the light of Your purpose. May I find in You the hope that sustains, the courage that empowers, and the love that transforms.

Thank You, Father, for Your unfailing love and the promise of a future filled with Your grace. I praise You and thank You for what You are doing and what You will continue to do in my life.

In Jesus’ name, Amen. 

2. Let me speak a little more about relationships:

Entering into new personal or professional relationships can bring about substantial changes in one’s life direction. These relationships can introduce new perspectives, ambitions, or challenges that might lead you to reassess your previous goals. When the relationships are positive, it is all good, and it should propel you to do more.

While relationships can often be sources of growth and positivity, they can sometimes have a negative impact on an individual’s dreams and sense of purpose. This can happen in any relationship, but its impact is greatest when the negativity is from a person in a position of authority or a spouse. When this occurs, it can lead to various challenges that may reshape or hinder one’s aspirations:

1. Distraction and Diversion
A new relationship might consume so much of one’s time and emotional energy that it becomes a distraction from personal goals.

2. Emotional Drain
If a relationship is emotionally taxing or unhealthy, it can drain the individual’s emotional reserves. Constant conflicts, insecurity, or emotional manipulation can leave little room for personal growth or the pursuit of one’s divine purpose. Over time, this can erode self-esteem and motivation.

3. Misalignment of Values and Goals
Sometimes, new relationships might lead to a realization that there is a fundamental misalignment in values and life goals. This can create internal conflict, where one might feel pressured to compromise on their dreams to maintain harmony in the relationship.

4. Financial Strain
Relationships can sometimes introduce financial difficulties, whether due to shared financial responsibilities, supporting a partner’s business or personal debts, or simply due to lifestyle changes. Such strains can divert resources away from personal goals and investments.

5. Isolation from Support Networks
New relationships that are controlling or overly possessive can lead to isolation from friends, family, and professional networks. This loss of support can make it difficult to pursue personal ambitions or seek help when challenges arise.

6. Change in Priorities
A partner’s negative outlook or lack of ambition can influence one’s own perspectives and priorities. If a partner discourages pursuits outside of the relationship or views certain aspirations as unworthy or unattainable, it can dampen enthusiasm and curtail efforts toward those goals.

7. Exposure to Risky Behaviors
Some relationships might expose an individual to risky behaviours or illegal activities, which can derail personal and professional lives. Getting involved in such situations can lead to legal troubles, loss of reputation, or worse, which can irreparably harm future prospects. A husband or wife can leave their partner in so much debt that it can erode the idea of pursuing any purpose. 


Short Version- Father, heal me from the trauma of relationships that have kept me in an obscure place.

Expanded version

Heavenly Father,

You see all things, Lord—nothing is hidden from Your sight. You know the depth of the hurt and the burden of the confusion that these relationships (mention them if you know) have brought into my life.

Father, I ask for Your healing touch on my wounded heart. Release me from the chains of emotional pain, and cleanse the shadows that these experiences have cast over me. Restore my spirit, so that I may find peace and clarity once again.

Help me to forgive those who have hurt me, not as an endorsement of their actions, but as a declaration of my freedom in You.

Realign my path according to Your will, and renew my mind so that I can see Your purpose for my life with clarity and confidence. Protect me from relationships that drain my spirit, and lead me towards those that will encourage growth and joy.

Surround me with Your love and light, and let me feel the presence of Your comfort. I trust in Your power to transform my pain into strength and my trials into testimonies of Your grace.

Thank you, Lord, for Your faithfulness and for the promise of healing and restoration. I lean on Your strength and find solace in Your promises.

In Jesus’ name, Amen.

3. She was sick, and then she died.

Acts 9: 37 But it happened in those days that she became sick and died. When they had washed her, they laid her in an upper room

This death was premature. You see if she was aged, the community she served would have mourned her loss but understood that she was old. Therefore, knowing that Peter was near, they sent for him. Her assignment was not over. I sense in my spirit that someone is weeping as I write this, and I say to you, “Your assignment is not over.”

Therefore, we exercise authority over the powers of darkness working to take us our of our field of assignment prematurely.


Short Version – . “By the anointing of the Holy Spirit, I declare that the chains of untimely death are broken over my life and my family. We shall live and declare the works of the Lord.
In Jesus’ name, Amen.”

Expanded version  

In the name of Jesus, I stand firm in the authority I have over all the power of the enemy. I declare that no weapon formed against me shall prosper. Jesus has promised me life, and I claim that promise now. “With long life You will satisfy me and show me Your salvation” (Psalm 91:16).

I rebuke the spirit of premature death and every plan of the enemy aimed at stealing, killing, and destroying my divine assignment. I am covered by the blood of Jesus, and I stand in the victory that Christ won on the cross. Jesus has triumphed over the grave, and He has given me authority to overcome all the schemes of the enemy (Luke 10:19).

I wear the whole armour of God—the belt of truth, the breastplate of righteousness, shoes prepared with the gospel of peace, the shield of faith, the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God.

Heavenly Father, Empower me to stand firm, to pray constantly, and to remain vigilant in faith.
Surround me with Your angels, Lord, as I walk in Your protection and favour. Guard my life and the lives of my family from any harm or danger. I trust in Your promise to protect and to save.

Thank You, Lord Jesus, for Your unending love and mighty power that ensure my safety and victory. I praise You and thank You for Your faithfulness and Your reign over all the earth.

In the name of Jesus, I pray, Amen.

4. Tabitha Arise

Acts 9:40 But Peter put them all out, and knelt down and prayed. And turning to the body he said, “Tabitha, arise.” And she opened her eyes, and when she saw Peter she sat up. 

Tabitha is your purpose, Tabitha is your assignment, Tabitha is the dream you have carried. I say to that assignment, Arise.

Do something prophetic. Get something that represents this assignment because you are going to speak to it and command it to arise, awake, and live. If you don’t have anything symbolic, then place your hand on your womb as a sign of birthing purpose.


Job 33: The Spirit of God has made me,
And the breath of the Almighty gives me life.

Short Version

Declare the scripture Job 33:4, then call that purpose/assignment by name and say arise.  
If it has no name yet, then declare, “My assignment arise, my assignment awake.
In the name of Jesus 

Expanded version

Heavenly Father,

I stand before You today, filled with the breath of Your Spirit, as declared in Job 33:4, “The Spirit of God has made me; the breath of the Almighty gives me life.” With this divine breath within me, I come to speak life into my assignment, my purpose, just as Peter commanded Tabitha to arise.

Tabitha, my assignment, you represent the dreams and visions that God has planted within me. Today, I speak to you directly: Arise! Awake! Manifest in the fullness of your potential. I command every aspect of this divine assignment to come alive and thrive. You will not lie dormant. You will not fade into obscurity. You are called by God, anointed and appointed for such a time as this.

In the name of Jesus, I declare that every hindrance, every barrier blocking the manifestation of this purpose, is removed. I speak to mountains of doubt, valleys of fear, and rivers of uncertainty: Be moved! Be crossed! Be conquered! My faith is set, and my heart is steadfast because the Almighty empowers me.

I place my hand upon my heart, symbolic of birthing this purpose. Just as the womb nurtures and brings forth life, so shall my spirit nurture and bring forth the reality of this God-given assignment. I am ready to carry it, to labour over it, and to see it brought to completion.

Lord, I thank You for the assurance that what You have started, You will finish. Thank You for the resurrection power at work within me, the same power that raised Tabitha, the same power that raised Christ from the dead. It is this power that will bring forth my assignment.

I praise You, God, for You are faithful. Your promises are Yes, and Amen. I await the manifestation of my assignment with expectation and gratitude. 

In the mighty and matchless name of Jesus, I pray,


Hallelujah, your Tabitha arises. Your Tabitha awakes in Jesus’ name, amen. 

Let’s complete this watch by breaking bread together (Sharing communion). I will be live on YouTube and Instagram at 1 PM EST/ 6 PM WAT (Nigeria).

All handles are @thewatchersprayerministry. 

Thank you for joining this weekend’s watch.

Love and Blessings overflowing

Pastor Tee