Knowledge that is Productive

Today’s Prayer,
God, I come to You seeking Your face, searching for answers so I can do something about the problems. There is so much turmoil in the world. There have been so many disasters, many beyond man’s control. I pray that You will broaden the minds the people affected by each incident and open their eyes to see what You want them to learn. And I pray that they will respond in the right way. I know that You sometimes allow pressures in my life to bring attention to an issue You want me to take care of too. I pray today, that You as my Loving Father will make known anything that stands in the way of fellowship between You and I. I want to turn from any wrongdoing, and “step up to the plate” to do the right thing, no matter how great or how simple it may seem. I praise You for Who You are, for all You do, and for the fellowship we share through prayer. In Jesus’ name, amen.


Knowledge that is Productive
TGIF Today God Is First Volume 1, by Os Hillman

04-12-2014

For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.” – 2 Peter 1:8

Productivity is a term all workplace believers can relate to. It is the by-product of what we desire from our work. Without productivity, we do not make sales, we do not deliver goods, and we do not achieve our goals. There are things in our work lives that can creep in making us unproductive. The same is true in our walk with God.

The apostle Peter tells us that we can become knowledgeable of Jesus but fail to be effective and productive in our relationship with Him. We are a society that has great knowledge, but our comparable scale of productivity from that knowledge is extremely weighted to the knowledge side. The apostle Peter tells us there is a solution to this dilemma.

For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith, goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, brotherly kindness; and to brotherly kindness, love. For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ (2 Peter 1:5-8).

Is your Christian experience filled with knowledge, but little power? Is there staleness in your walk with God? Is there unrest in your soul? It may be due to a need to develop character that only the Holy Spirit can develop out of an obedient heart. Ask the Lord today to add these qualities to your faith so that you can be productive as a soldier of Jesus Christ.

Today God Is First (TGIF) devotional message, Copyright by Os Hillman, Marketplace Leaders.

Faith Experiences

Today’s Prayer,
Dear God, Thank You for Your Word; Your Word that is like honey to my lips and balm to my soul. I pray that the words that go forth out of my mouth shall be “pleasant words, like a honeycomb,” to the people around me. I want my words to be like “sweetness to the soul and health to the bones,” so that I may encourage others, build them up, and point them to You. If I may share just an inkling of the love and sweetness You give to me…I will be blessed and will be a blessing. In Jesus’ name I pray, amen.

Faith Experiences
TGIF Today God Is First Volume 1, by Os Hillman

04-07-2014

“These have come so that your faith-of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire-may be proved genuine and may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed.” – 1 Peter 1:7

One of the great tragedies of the Christian life is that if we fail to enter into a relationship with God that is born of the Holy Spirit, we are left with a religion, not a relationship. Many a person today lives with an intellectual belief in God, but without a relationship that is based on two-way communication. This is the greatest tragedy of all. It’s like having a brand-new car but never having the gas to run it. It can’t move you anywhere. It only looks pretty, but one cannot enjoy the ride or smell the newness inside.

Peter tells us that until our faith is proved genuine, we will never be able to give praise, glory, and honor to Jesus, because until such testing He will not be revealed in our lives. Peter describes this in the verse before: “In this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials” (1 Pet. 1:6). Trials are designed to bring us to a level of trust and experience with God that we would never know otherwise. These “faith experiences” with God allow us to know firsthand the faithfulness of God, the love of God, and the personal nature of God. If you cannot recount several instances when God has met you personally, then chances are your faith has not been born of the Holy Spirit into a living relationship with God. It is easy to fall prey to a relationship to God that never experiences His real presence; rather, it is based on knowledge only. This is a tragic place to be.

If this is where you have been in your Christian experience, ask God today to make Himself real to you. Ask Him to show you His personal nature and love. He desires to do this. Those whom He has called know His voice. He will show Himself to those who are His. “He who loves Me will be loved by My Father, and I too will love him and show Myself to him” (Jn. 14:21b).

Today God Is First (TGIF) devotional message, Copyright by Os Hillman, Marketplace Leaders.

…since this is a bit of a storytelling kind of blog here at Joppa Road, I hope to soon have ready a pair of stories for you all to read: one will be “Can You Reach My Friend,” where I tell about a near chance path-crossing that occurred between an old beloved friend and I, and two will be called “True Grit” (after the movie of the same name) talking about the really tough work week I had last week; it may be posted here or on Word Play, Joppa Say and then reblogged here. Keep following the Road…

Opening Our Spiritual Eyes

Today’s Prayer,

Oh God, I know you love me. You have shown me in so many ways, the greatest being sacrificing your Son to become my Savior. I know you must be concerned about even the little things in my life, and you want to direct me in all my ways. Please forgive me when I don’t listen and when I stumble and stray. Please, I’m asking you, to lead me by your Spirit today. Make me a blessing to you and to others. In the precious name of Jesus I pray, amen.

Opening Our Spiritual Eyes
TGIF Today God Is First Volume 1, by Os Hillman

04-01-2014

“And Elisha prayed, ‘O Lord, open his eyes so he may see.’ Then the Lord opened the servant’s eyes, and he looked and saw the hills full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha.”
– 2 Kings 6:17

Elisha was counseling the nation of Israel against the impending attack of the king of Aram. The Lord supernaturally gave Elisha the plans that the king was implementing, and in turn, Elisha warned Israel of each intended attack. The king could not understand why his plans were continually foiled. It seemed there was a secret informer in his midst. He was furious when he was told it was the God of Israel who was to blame for this inside information. The king decided the only way to resolve the situation was to get rid of the problem – kill Elisha.

The king’s forces arrived and surrounded Elisha and his servant. Elisha’s servant became upset and fearful when Elisha was not upset. Elisha immediately prayed that his servant’s eyes might be opened to see that there was no need to be afraid, because the angels were protecting them.

And Elisha prayed, “O Lord, open his eyes so he may see.” Then the Lord opened the servant’s eyes, and he looked and saw the hills full of horses and chariots of fire all around Elisha. As the enemy came down toward him, Elisha prayed to the Lord, “Strike these people with blindness.” So He struck them with blindness, as Elisha had asked (2 Kings 6:17-18).

Who is the Elisha in your life? Do you have a mentor friend who can see the activity of God in your life when you cannot see it? We all need to have somebody we can trust to help us see the activity of God. It is often difficult for us to see what God is really doing because we are so consumed by the circumstances of the moment. Ask God today to help open your spiritual eyes that you might see Him in your circumstances.

Today God Is First (TGIF) devotional message, Copyright by Os Hillman, Marketplace Leaders.

Embracing the Lean Times

Today’s Prayer,
Dear gracious, merciful, loving Heavenly Father, Thank you for this day. Thank you for your never-ending love and your tender mercies. I pray for those today who are in need of a special touch. Those who are facing challenges, obstacles, consequences; those who need favor from a spouse, an employer, a friend, a judge, an insurance company, a hospital, a landlord, a financial institution, or any other person or organization with whom there may be a special situation. Please work in these situations, in these lives, in these places to bring about good. Please grant favor, touch hearts, move mountains if necessary for your will, your glory, and in the best interest of those who need your help. May you be honored. May lives be changed. May souls be rescued. May needs be met. In the name of Jesus our Savior I pray, amen.


Embracing the Lean Times
TGIF Today God Is First Volume 1, by Os Hillman

03-30-2014

“But blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in Him.” – Jeremiah 17:7

Have you ever considered at what point a test becomes so difficult that you decide you can no longer trust in God and you must take over to solve the problem? The prophet Jeremiah describes a situation in which the temptation to solve a financial problem can become so great that we trust in man’s way to solve it.

This is what the Lord says: “Cursed is the one who trusts in man, who depends on flesh for his strength and whose heart turns away from the Lord. He will be like a bush in the wastelands; he will not see prosperity when it comes. He will dwell in the parched places of the desert, in a salt land where no one lives. But blessed is the man who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in Him. He will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes; its leaves are always green. It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit” (Jeremiah 17:5-8).

Jeremiah drew a sharp comparison between the man who trusts in his own effort to solve his problem and the man who trusts in God when he cannot see the outcome. The man who trusts in God bears fruit despite the circumstances in his life. He does not shrivel when the heat comes; in fact, his roots go deeper into God’s grace. He continues to bear fruit in spite of his circumstances.

Recently, a friend from South Africa explained to me that whenever a plant lives in an arid climate, the roots drive deeper and deeper into the soil to get the water they need. This forces the plant to develop a root system that is far beyond the normal plant because it is forced to go deeper to gain the water it needs. Sometimes God forces us to go deeper into the grace of His love in order to build a greater foundation in our own lives. These lean times are designed to accomplish this in us. If you find yourself in this condition, ask the Lord who provides the water for our soul for the grace you need today to continue to bear fruit in the desert.

Today God Is First (TGIF) devotional message, Copyright by Os Hillman, Marketplace Leaders.

Living a Life of Conviction

Today’s Prayer,
Dear God, I admit that I have not always lived a “blameless” life. Please forgive me of that. I pray that You would make me a person who lives a life above reproach, one who is blameless, who keeps a good testimony and reputation. I want to become more like Jesus and grow closer to You every day. Thank You for covering me with the blood of Jesus, for forgiveness of sin, and for giving me a new life. I praise You, the most “blameless” of all, who is always good, full of grace and love. Have mercy on me. In Jesus’ name, amen.

Living a Life of Conviction
TGIF Today God Is First Volume 1, by Os Hillman

03-26-2014

“For we know, brothers loved by God, that He has chosen you, because our gospel came to you not simply with words, but also with power, with the Holy Spirit and with deep conviction.” - 1 Thessalonians 1:4-5a

Everyone lives a life of conviction. Whatever we give our greatest time, our greatest energies, and our greatest resources to is a good indication of where our convictions lie. Some live a life of conviction about sports. Some live a life of conviction around pleasure. Still others live a life of conviction about very little that matters at all.

Whenever God chooses to do a deep work in a life, a strong conviction is born of the Holy Spirit. Conversions in the early Church resulted in changed lives that held to a deep, life-transforming conviction regarding what they believed and how they lived out that belief. Paul explains that the gospel they received came not just in words, but also in power, with the Holy Spirit and with deep conviction.

In order to impact the workplace for Jesus Christ, each of us must be reflecting a faith that is demonstrated through deeply held convictions. Are you living a life of deep conviction that spurs you on to reflect the power of Christ in your life and the lives of others? Paul was willing to suffer great persecution for his faith in a living God. God calls each of us to a life that is supernatural, not simply a good, moral life. The early Church understood the role the Holy Spirit played in demonstrating this power of the gospel. It was this deep work that resulted in living the gospel with great conviction. If you are not living the gospel with great conviction, ask the Holy Spirit to so fill your life today that the power of His Spirit is truly reflected in your life so that you may impact others in your workplace.

Today God Is First (TGIF) devotional message, Copyright by Os Hillman, Marketplace Leaders.

Sowing in Tears

Today’s Prayer,
God, People in this world are looking for real faith. Some of them place that faith in the wrong god, whether a false god or material things or a person. I pray for everyone in the world, for those in my own “Jerusalem,” and my own family. I pray that you would use me and my life experiences as an instrument to demonstrate real faith to the unbelieving. Give me opportunities to share my faith experiences and give me the words to say to influence those who need it. Speak through me, work through me, your servant. I love you. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.


Sowing In Tears
TGIF Today God Is First Volume 1, by Os Hillman

02-09-2014

“Those who sow in tears will reap in joy.”
– Psalm 126:5

Psalm 126 describes an interesting process that goes against our natural tendencies when we are taken into a difficult period in our lives. Whenever we are hurled into a crisis that brings tears, our tendency is to retreat or recoil in fear and hurt. However, there is a better way that God tells us to handle such times of travail.

Those who sow in tears will reap with songs of joy. “He who goes out weeping, carrying seed to sow, will return with songs of joy, carrying sheaves with him” (Ps. 126:5-6). God is telling us that if we will do what is unnatural for us in these circumstances, He will make sure that what we sow in tears will return in joy. This is one of the most important lessons I have learned when faced with difficult circumstances. Rather than sit back and allow self-pity and discouragement to consume us, we should plant seed during this time. Reach out to a person who needs a friend. Invest in the life of another. See where you can be a blessing to someone. Give of yourself.

The psalmist acknowledges that we are doing this while we are in our pain. However, during this time we are to sow seed. That seed will return to us in another form. Here is what will happen when we do this. “He who goes out weeping, carrying seed to sow, will return with songs of joy, carrying sheaves with him.” We will receive joy and fruit from the seed that we plant during this time. Sheaves represent the fruit of a harvest. We will actually get a harvest from this seed.

“You must not let the circumstances destroy you! Too many in the Kingdom are counting on you to come through this because of the calling on your life!” Those were the words spoken to me by a friend one time when I was in the midst of a very difficult business and personal circumstance that was threatening to destroy me emotionally. This person saw what God was doing and the fruit that God wanted to bring from these circumstances. Sometimes we need others around us to push us through the difficult times. If you find yourself in a difficult place today, see where you can sow some seed. Soon you will be reaping songs of joy.

Today God Is First (TGIF) devotional message, Copyright by Os Hillman, Marketplace Leaders.

Faith Versus Presumption

Today’s Prayer,

Dear God, please forgive me. I sometimes look at those I see and get frustrated by the way they are. Some are angry and act ugly and even curse. Others have no desire to do what is right. Some just want to “party” and live like the world all the time. Some are lazy. Some are hurting and holding on to bitterness. I don’t always understand why they are that way. Then I, in my frustration, become angry and grumble. Forgive me for my ungodly attitudes and complaining. I am sorry. Help me to see the potential in others and to pray for them more and criticize them less. I pray that through my prayers to you and through my Christian testimony and example and through my words and deeds, these people would come to know you or come back and lay their issues on the altar. I pray that we all will lift our burdens to you and drop them at your feet, so that you can take them away and guide us in the way everlasting. Please relieve our griefs and burdens and replace them with your peace. Please bless us as we serve you. Please help us and pick us help when we stumble. Thank you for your mercies. In Jesus’ name I pray, amen.

Faith Versus Presumption
TGIF Today God Is First Volume 1, by Os Hillman

03-08-2014

“So she said to Abram, ‘The Lord has kept me from having children. Go, sleep with my maidservant; perhaps I can build a family through her.’ Abram agreed to what Sarai said.” – Genesis 16:2

Presumption is based on our own reasoning. Abraham and Sarah fell into presumption when they got too old to have children. God had promised a son to Abraham and Sarah – a son who would fulfill His promise to birth a nation. But Abraham and Sarah were past the normal age for childbearing. So, they concluded that God needed help to work out His plan.

Many workplace believers make the same mistake every day. We make assumptions about what we believe God is doing and wants us to do. However, before we really have full assurance that God has spoken to us on the matter and revealed His perfect action plan, we move forward with our steps to get it done. How do we protect ourselves from presumption? The Proverbs tell us that there is safety in a multitude of counselors (see Prov. 11:14 KJV). Submitting our decisions to others for confirmation protects each of us from the deceit of our own heart. This process will protect us from presumption and encourage us to move in faith. The next time you believe God is directing you toward a specific action, consult with your spouse first, then some close, spiritual friends who will take the time to prayerfully consider your request. If you don’t have consensus, wait until you do before you move forward. God will move through this process to His desired will for the matter.

Today God Is First (TGIF) devotional message, Copyright by Os Hillman, Marketplace Leaders.

…today marks …

…today marks the 2nd anniversary of Welcome to Joppa Road! Praise Him! I want to thank the Lord Jesus for everything, especially the dream and the idea of creating the Road and giving me the courage to do it. Also I wanna thank you all the readers and followers for just that- reading and following; makiing this a very strong and popular Christian blogsite all around the world. Thank you and God bless you all…! (I believe I’ll have another original post coming soon…)

- Josephus-Joppa
Welcome to Joppa Road

 

…man, it’s be…

…man, it’s been a while, so I’m barely keeping up with stats for Welcome to Joppa Road anymore… but we’ve recently surpassed 2,000 page views though (I just noticed)! Praise God! Anyway, all you page viewers and readers out there please follow the Road! And also read Joppa’s latest original post, “These Nails”, which was posted (I’m pretty sure) this month…!

 

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