Weekend Message Takeaway: “Running from Greatness”

This past weekend, we kicked off a new five-week teaching series exploring the epic journey of the prophet Jonah as Pastor Doug shared a message from Jonah 1:1–16. Here, we explored the great message God has for the people of the city of Nineveh (and our city), the price for running from Him, and the power of our Lord to turn our biggest failures into greatness. 

Watch the video below to see a few highlights from the teaching and share it with your friends via social media. To watch the message in its entirety, click here.



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

God sent a reluctant Jonah to Nineveh, the capital city of the Assyrian Empire, to warn them of their impending destruction.

Nineveh was a huge, advanced, and bustling metropolitan city, likely over 60 miles in circumference. They were seen as great in the eyes of man, both in size and importance. In the eyes of God, though, there were two things about the Ninevites that were great: their wickedness (Jonah 1:2) and their need for Him (Jonah 4:11).

Great (Jonah 1:2): Massive; prominent; vast in importance, magnitude, extent, and/or number.

Reflect: Is there a group of people you have a hard time loving? 

God has a GREAT Message for the People of Your City (Jonah 1:1–2): The Church should never retreat into the walls of a building and isolate themselves from the world. We are not in Zion . . . we are in Babylon! Studies indicate that cities are the loneliest places on the planet; filled with apathy and despair but no answers to the deep questions that keep people up at night. God has called us to go into the city, to bring shalom (peace). We have a great hope, a beautiful message of peace, grace, love, acceptance, and security, and it’s our mission to share that hope to those in captivity. 

Reflect: Have you ever felt God call you to go somewhere or do something? How did He do this?

Running from God has a GREAT Price (Jonah 1:3–16): Jonah didn’t think the people of Nineveh were worthy of God’s mercy or forgiveness. He believed they deserved His wrath. So, he decided to flee from God’s call on his life, and he paid for it. He got on a boat and headed to Tarshish, which eventually led him to the bottom of the sea, almost bringing others down with him.

Reflect: How have you responded to God’s call in your life?

God Can Turn Your Failure into Greatness: The Book of Jonah isn’t about a man and his failure; it’s not even about the cost of running from your calling . . . it’s about a GREAT God who can do exceedingly, abundantly more than we could ever ask, think, or imagine. It’s a gospel story, a story about Jesus! It’s a powerful story that mirrors the gospel story as God initiates, man rebels, and God intervenes—Matthew 12:41(NLT) says, “Now someone greater than Jonah is here.”

Quote to Remember: Is there a pagan boat that God wants to see become a place of worship in this city?Doug Sauder


In this featured article, we explore the context, background, themes, and significance of this powerful book. Learn more about Jonah, Nineveh, and God’s plan.

Read the Article

Month of November
Love South Florida is an initiative where churches throughout South Florida will unite to spread the gospel. Our goal is to be a tangible and collective demonstration of God’s heart to our communities by praying, giving, and serving! We believe God is going to accomplish great things through His people as we purpose to love, give, and serve our community! We pray you'll join us in spreading the life-changing love, compassion, and kindness of Jesus to those who need it most. Click the button below to see everything going on this November.

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Box Collection: Now Through November 12
It’s more than a shoebox. What may seem like a few small items to you, can be a powerful evangelistic tool to provide the hope of Jesus to hurting children around the world through Operation Christmas Child. For detailed info and/or drop off donations, visit us at the Connection Point or at both entrances of the Sanctuary (all campuses). Click the button below for a list of gift suggestions for your shoebox.

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This Wednesday, Pastor Jerry Sander of our Boca campus will kick off our midweek series on evangelism with a message from Matthew 28:18-20. Join us as we take an introspective look at the Great Commission.

Continuing our study through the Book of Jonah, this weekend we’ll be joined by special guest Pastor Daniel Fusco from Crossroads Community Church in Vancouver, WA. In this message, we’ll go a little more in-depth on Jonah 1.

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.