October 30, 2017

Today you should read: Proverbs 30

Today as you read this passage notice in verses 1-6 the writer is establishing his humility before God. He is recognizing that God is so much more than he or any person will ever be. He recognizes that he is insignificant and in desperate need of God and his wisdom. He is taking a posture of appropriate fear before God. Then in verses 7-9 he makes his requests to God. He asks 2 things.

Request number 1: Remove from me falsehood and lying. This implies both that he does not want to become a liar and that he does not want to have people lie to him. It is this idea of pursuing holiness personally and avoiding things and others that will cause one to stumble. This is a desire and a prayer that we as believers should be praying.

Request number 2: “Give me neither poverty nor riches; feed me with the food that is needful for me.” This request reflects the wisdom that Proverbs is trying to instill in people. This is the idea that we would not desire excess but that we would desire what is needed for life. This mentality and attitude leads to a generous heart as well. Because in excess that we may gain we are happy to give because God has already provided for our needs.

The rest of this chapter describes sin and the path of sin. Essentially what comes when we decide that we do not want to have a posture of humility before God. When we are prideful we follow our flesh rather than our savior. We choose this every day. What is your choice today?

By: Dakota Gragg — Student Ministry Associate

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October 7, 2017

Today you should read: Proverbs 13

So many nuggets of truth today in Proverbs 13! I thought this would be a good chapter to employ a different format for Jumpstart. I will share verses that jumped out to me, and with each, I will give a reflection question. Feel free to do the same (or give your answers) in the comments section!
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Verse 1: A wise child accepts a parent’s discipline; a mocker refuses to listen to correction.

Question: Do you respond well to criticism/correction, especially from family? 

Verse 3: Those who control their tongue will have a long life; opening your mouth can ruin everything.

Question: How have your words hindered you in the past? cf. James 3

Verse 4: Lazy people want much but get little, but those who work hard will prosper.

Question: How would those closest to you describe your work ethic? Is it a good reflection of 1 Corinthians 10:31? 

Verse 7: Some who are poor pretend to be rich; others who are rich pretend to be poor.

Question: In what ways are you a “pretender” in order to impress people around you? 

Verse 10: Pride leads to conflict; those who take advice are wise.

Question: With major decisions in your life, do you seek *godly* counsel? 

Verse 20: Walk with the wise and become wise; associate with fools and get in trouble.

Question: Do you have strong Christians in your inner circle? 

Verse 24: Those who spare the rod of discipline hate their children. Those who love their children care enough to discipline them.

Question: Parents: how have you seen this verse proved true in your family? 

Verse 25: The godly eat to their hearts’ content, but the belly of the wicked goes hungry.

Question: Christian: is your soul satisfied in Christ (John 7:38), or are you searching for more of what the world has to offer you? 

By: Todd Thomas — Worship & College Pastor

May 9, 2016

Today you should read: 1 Corinthians 7:1-16

Today’s passage hits right in the wheel house for all of us. At this point in his letter to the Corinthian church Paul begins to answer specific questions they had asked him (probably in a letter they had sent to him). You’ll see throughout the letter moving forward Paul says “now concerning.” This phrase is an indicator that he is going to address the next topic of their asking. This is a really cool thing and it helps us today to understand that the church of 2,000 years ago was searching for answers on how to live Godly lives just like we are today. So, we can really relate to the Corinthian believers here. Lucky for them, and for us, the man who answered their questions was supernaturally inspired and ordained to answer them perfectly according to God’s standard. Therefore, we can trust fully in Paul’s words. There’s a lot here so let’s “JumpStart” into it.

Paul describes both marriage and singleness as a gift (v.6). One is not greater than the other; one is not a blessing and the other a curse. In some instances, as in Paul’s case, singleness was the greatest way for him to live out the mission God had called him to and glorify God. For others, marriage is one significant avenue by which they are called to live on mission and bring glory to His name. Paul lists advantages and disadvantages to both here. The point here is not that a person remains single or gets married. The point is that every person, either married or single, is called to glorify God with their life, live out His will, and produce Spiritual fruit that leads to others coming to faith in Jesus. We have the ability, through Christ, to live that type of life as a single person or a married person.

Paul addresses the issue of marriage and singleness very head on because the Corinthians believers were struggling with sexual sin. Their culture was immersed in it. That’s yet another way we can relate to the church in Corinth today. Due to the vast sexual immorality facing the Corinthian believers, many had come to believe that all sexual activity was wrong and sinful (even inside a Godly marriage). This of course is a wrong view and Paul takes the opportunity to outline the Biblical purposes of sex in a covenantal Godly marriage between a man and woman. Paul gives very thorough descriptions of how honoring God in marriage and singleness must be void of all sexual immorality, and that sex was in fact created by God, can be honoring to God and be beneficial to living a Godly life when done God’s way.

Divorce is also something Paul addresses by referring the Corinthians to Jesus’ teaching on the matter (Matt 5:32, Mark 10:11-12, Luke 16:18) and giving explanatory statements to help the believers honor God in their marriages and ultimately their lives.

Are you married and thriving in your relationship with God and your spouse? Married and struggling? Single and growing in your faith? Single and feeling like it is a curse not a gift? Struggling with sexual sin? You are not alone and you are not the first. These Corinthian believers did too. The believers of Center Point Church do too. Be encouraged today that in the gospel there is hope for all of us in all situations and stages of life. Cling to the gospel, practice repentance, seek reconciliation, ask for accountability, and commit to honoring God wherever you are today.

By: Matt Mofield

May 7, 2016

Today you should read: 1 Corinthians 6:12-20

Don’t be Dominated by Anything

Dominated.  Controlled.  Conquered.  Ruled.  Enslaved.

It can happen easily to us, and we can choose it slowly but surely.  Something in our life, possibly a good thing, becomes something we look to for security, satisfaction, and a sense of identity.  It can be something harmless and even “godly” at first, but over time the idol-factory in our heart turns it into something that controls us.  Can you relate?

Paul, here, is speaking mainly of sexual immorality.  But there’s more.  He’s speaking to a greater principle, namely that we shouldn’t be controlled by anything other than the Holy Spirit.  We shouldn’t be enslaved by anything other than Christ.  Our bodies shouldn’t serve anything other than God.  We shouldn’t take things that are good in their proper context, like sex and food, or anything else that is technically “lawful,” and use them in a way that God did not intend or allow them to become our all-consuming desires.

Today’s “Walk-a-Way”

We need a regular system check.  We need to stop along the way of life and ask ourselves hard questions.  The idol-factory works quick.  It doesn’t need a long time or a lot of help in order to produce a shiny new idol in our life.  But this will only lead us to despair when we realize later on that it can’t provide security, it can’t provide satisfaction, it can’t provide self-worth, and it can’t provide salvation.

Only God can do all those things.

So, let’s make it a weekly practice to take a deep look inside our hearts, and make sure good things aren’t becoming idols.  Once these things have “satisfied” us a time or two (compliments, success, meals, etc.) we can easily think more is better.  We need to shut down the factory before it goes into over-production.   

What has the potential to dominate your thoughts?

What has the potential to become the “provider” of your security, satisfaction, and sense of self-worth?  

What dominates your life right now?  Is it anything other than the Holy Spirit?

By: Sam Cirrincione