Where Do I Belong?

A First 5 Study Guide: Special Content!

Enhance your study of Where Do I Belong? Finding Our True Home Through the Study of Exile in the Bible with bonus content every week! This page includes a small group discussion guide and six videos that will help you dig deeper into the topics you’re learning about in the study guide. Feel free to watch these videos on your own or with a group. We hope you enjoy this additional biblical content! 

Click here to download our Small Group Discussion Guide.

We designed this small group discussion guide as a resource to help you! Here you’ll find intentional discussion questions, conversation topics and prompts you can use to walk alongside a small group of your friends through this six-week study guide.

WEEK 1

Mountaintops and Meeting With God

 

Do you have somewhere you like to go to pray or meet with God? In the Bible, some of the most significant moments happen at the top of mountains. From creation to Christ’s crucifixion, mountaintops are repeatedly present. So what purpose do mountains play in Scripture, and how does Christ’s mountaintop sacrifice change it all for us as believers?

To download a transcript of this video click here.

Week 1 presenter is Dr. Joel Muddamalle. For further reading from Joel, check out The Hidden Peace, Finding Peace Through Humility Bible Study Guide, and 30 Days with Jesus Bible Study, or listen to him on the Proverbs 31 Ministries podcast Therapy & Theology.

WEEK 2

Purpose Through the Wilderness

In the midst of trial, have you ever asked yourself, Can I make it through this? God’s people ask this question countless times when they face going through the wilderness in exile. But God transforms the wilderness from a place to be dreaded and despised into a place where we can experience His power and presence.

To download a transcript of this video click here.

Week 2 presenter is Dr. Joel Muddamalle. For further reading from Joel, check out The Hidden Peace, Finding Peace Through Humility Bible Study Guide, and 30 Days with Jesus Bible Study, or listen to him on the Proverbs 31 Ministries podcast Therapy & Theology.

WEEK 3

From Exile to Jesus: An Interview With Biblical Scholar Dr. Carol Kaminsk

 

Find answers to the questions you may have about the Babylonian exile and what it means for us today in this conversation between Dr. Carol Kaminski and Eric Gagnon, First 5’s Theological Content Specialist. You’ll learn more fascinating details and how to deepen your understanding of this study as they explore topics ranging from ancient Babylon to how we are sometimes seen as exiles.

To download a transcript of this video click here.

WEEK 4

How a Symbol of Shame Became Our Salvation

 

When you think of the cross, what does it mean to you? The Roman cross is commonly known as a positive biblical symbol, but it hasn’t always been this way. It used to be known globally as a symbol of fear and Roman power. What changed? Watch as Dr. Joel Muddamalle shares how the cross’s meaning transformed overnight.

To download a transcript of this video click here.

Week 4 presenter is Dr. Joel Muddamalle. For further reading from Joel, check out The Hidden Peace, Finding Peace Through Humility Bible Study Guide, and 30 Days with Jesus Bible Study, or listen to him on the Proverbs 31 Ministries podcast Therapy & Theology.

WEEK 5

Is There Any Good in Exile?

 

When our heart longs for home, how can we possibly live fruitfully in exile? In Jeremiah 29, God’s people experienced this challenge in Babylon. God called them not only to live faithfully while in exile but also to seek the peace and prosperity of the place where they were exiled. As Christ followers, we experience living in exile today. Watch the video to learn how God calls us to fulfill this very same command.

To download a transcript of this video click here.

Week 5 presenter is Wendy Blight. For further reading from Wendy, check out Rest for Your Soul: A Bible Study on Solitude, Silence, and Prayer and 1 John: Walking in the Fullness of God’s Love.

WEEK 6

We Belong With the God Who Belongs With Us

 

Is it really possible to cling to the hope of our true home when we’re struggling with hard realities on this side of eternity? As we conclude this series on exile, join Melissa Spoelstra for a closer look at Psalm 90, which reminds us that true belonging can be found right now with Jesus no matter what we face.

To download a transcript of this video click here.

Week 6 presenter is Melissa Spoelstra. For further reading from Melissa, check out her most recent book, The Gospel of John: Savoring the Peace of Jesus in a Chaotic World, and Isaiah: Striving Less and Trusting God More.

 

Meet the Teachers:

Wendy Blight

is a wife, mother, author, Bible teacher, attorney and the Biblical Content Specialist at Proverbs 31 Ministries. Her heart’s desire is to help women fall in love with God’s Word: to learn it, pray it, and know with confidence that through it, they can tackle any problem life presents. Wendy has authored five books: Hidden Joy in a Dark Corner, I Know His Name, and 1 John: Walking in the Fullness of God’s Love. Her newest book, Rest for Your Soul: A Bible Study on Solitude, Silence, and Prayer, released last year. She also co-authored 40 Days Through the Bible and a Bible study on Ruth for First 5. Wendy lives with her husband, Monty, in Charlotte, North Carolina, and loves most when her two children, Lauren and Bo, come home to visit and fill their home with lots of love and laughter! She would love to connect with you on Instagram (wblight) and Facebook Author Page (Wendy Blight).

Eric Gagnon

is the author of Good News: How the Four Gospels Point Us to One Person We Can Trust. He is currently serving as Theological Content Specialist at Proverbs 31 Ministries. He has a bachelor’s degree in church ministry as well as a master’s degree in theology from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary. He has previously served as a pastor and now lives in the Charlotte area, North Carolina. He is husband to Sarah and the father of three. Find out more about Eric’s ministry at adornthegospel.com.

Dr. Carol M. Kaminski

is a Senior Professor of Old Testament at Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary and the founder of CASKET EMPTY, an innovative teaching tool that helps teach the one redemptive narrative of the entire Bible through visual timelines and contextual analysis. For more information visit www.casketempty.com. Holding advanced degrees from Melbourne School of Theology, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary and the University of Cambridge, Dr. Kaminski has authored several influential books on biblical studies. She and her husband live in Topsfield, Massachusetts.

Dr. Joel Muddamalle

holds a Ph.D. in theology and serves as Director of Theological Research at Proverbs 31 Ministries. He is a co-host of the Therapy & Theology podcast with Lysa TerKeurst and Licensed Professional Counselor Jim Cress. Joel serves on the preaching team at Transformation Church in Indian Land, South Carolina, and is a frequent speaker at conferences and events. He just released his first book, The Hidden Peace: Finding True Security, Strength, and Confidence Through Humility. Based in Charlotte, North Carolina, Joel and his wife enjoy a full house with their four children and two dogs. If he doesn’t have a theology book in hand, you can be sure he’s coaching one of his kids in a sport or doing his best to keep up his hoops game on the basketball court. You can connect with Joel on his website to learn more about his book projects, research, writing and Bible teachings.

Melissa Spoelstra

is a women’s conference speaker, Bible teacher, and author who is madly in love with Jesus and passionate about helping others seek Christ and know Him more intimately. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Bible Theology and is the author of ten Bible studies, including The Gospel of John: Savoring the Peace of Jesus in a Chaotic World, Acts: Awakening to God in Everyday Life, and Isaiah: Striving Less and Trusting God More. Melissa makes her home in Waxahachie, Texas, with her pastor husband and four kids. You can connect with Melissa on her website.