Weekend Message Takeaway: “The Arrival” (December 17–18)

Sometimes the Greatest Gifts Take Us By Surprise!

Did you know that it was first century culture to hire a herald to announce the birth of a first-born son? The Gospel of Luke tells the story of the night where God commissioned His herald, the angel Gabriel, to announce the birth of His Son, Jesus. This weekend, as we continued our “Wonder of Christmas” series, Pastor Doug explored the herald’s message to the world, and explained how today we are heralds to a world who desperately needs to hear the life-changing message of Jesus.


Watch this short video to see how this weekend’s teaching affected some of our fellow church members. To watch this teaching or other messages, click here.


For the Note Takers

Let’s recap some of the key talking points from Pastor Doug’s teaching this weekend:


Don’t Be Afraid: The gospel has the power to set us free from our fears!


Good News of Great Joy: Is this good news to you?


For All People: What it feels like to know God can forgive and accept you.


A Savior Is Born: The Director wrote Himself into the drama and entered into it!


This Is Your Sign: You’ll see a baby in a feeding trough in a barn.


Glory to God: Peace on earth has finally come . . . The war is over!


God Reveals Himself to Those Who Are Open to Hear Him (Luke 2:15–20): He picked simple shepherds to be the first witnesses to the newborn King.


We Are Heralds: We are God’s official messengers, His ambassadors, carriers of His good news for all the world.


Quote to Remember: “Sometimes the greatest gifts take us completely by surprise.”—Pastor Doug Sauder


Featured Articles: Christmas Edition

As you prepare for all the Christmas festivities between today and Sunday, here are a few articles to help you prepare. First, find out the importance of family traditions, particularly during the holiday season in Priya Ramsaran’s article “Rethinking Traditions.” Then, Kaci Barker provides some helpful tips on how to successfully navigate family gatherings in her article, “The Do’s And Don’ts Of Getting Along With Family This Holiday Season.Finally, if you’re unsure how to address the issue of Santa Claus with your children, find out how some of our pastors approach the subject with their kids in Danny Saavedra’s article, Addressing the Reindeer in the Room: Is Santa Real?.


Track the Greatest Gift Ever Given!

From now until December 25, you and your family can track the amazing and unlikely journey of Jesus! Last weekend, Calvary Kids gave out The Wonder of Christmas packets which include fun activities, coloring pages, and projects you and your kids can do together while tracking Jesus’ journey. If you didn’t get one, be sure to download it online.


New Year’s Eve Celebration with Phil Wickham

This New Year’s Eve, join us for an amazing time of worship led by Phil Wickham, a short Bible teaching, and fun with friends. Invite your friends and family for a great celebration of the previous year and ringing in the New Year! There will be food for sale prepared by The Grill before the event and during intermission.


A Look Ahead

This Wednesday, Pastor Doug will tell the story of Mary and Joseph’s unexpected birth plan. I’m sure a manger isn’t where Mary expected to give birth when she envisioned the Savior of the world being born, but God knew there wouldn’t be room in the inn that night. He was in control the whole time!  


This Saturday is Christmas Eve! Enjoy an amazing time of worship, a powerful message, and some other great surprises. Invite your friends and loved ones to join us as Pastor Doug shares why we so desperately need a Savior while exploring the gifts of the wise men.


Click here to find out why inviting people to church is so important!

About the Author

Danny Saavedra

Danny Saavedra is a licensed minister who has served on staff at Calvary since 2012, managing the Calvary Devotional and digital discipleship resources. He has a Master of Arts in Pastoral Counseling and Master of Divinity in Pastoral Ministry from Liberty Theological Seminary. His wife Stephanie, son Jude, and daughter Zoe share a love of Star Wars, good food, having friends over for dinner, and studying the Word together as a family.