1. Tell us a time when you were asked to do something you didn’t want to do. If you ended up doing it anyway, what changed your mind?

  1. Chores at home but assigned unfairly or not my turn.
  2. School work assigned on a topic I have no interest in.
  3. Something at work that is well above/below my pay grade.
  4. Other __________.



Jonah 2-3 is part of the larger story of the prophet Jonah, who was called by God to preach to the people of Nineveh, a great city known for wickedness. However, instead of obeying God, Jonah fled from his responsibility by boarding a ship heading in the opposite direction. God sent a great storm to the sea and Jonah was thrown overboard by the terrified sailors.

God’s Story
Have someone read aloud Jonah 2-3.

Finding My Story in God’s Story

2. Where do you see yourself in this story?

  1. Like Jonah, I’ve tried to run away from my responsibilities and ignore God’s commands.
  2. Like the sailors, I can sometimes be influenced by others and make poor decisions.
  3. Like the great fish, I carry burdens deep down that feel like prayers ready to burst.
  4. Like the people of Nineveh, I have experienced a turn-around in relation to God.
  5. I don’t see myself in this story; my spiritual pilgrimage is very


3. What part of Jonah’s prayer (ch 2) can you relate to? When have you prayed like that?


4. How do you suppose Jonah’s preaching (ch 3) would go over in your hometown?


5. Jonah returns to God by agreeing to preach to the people of Nineveh. What makes it hard to change your mind when you don’t want to do something?

  1. I don’t always listen, God has to say it again for me to get it.
  2. My fear of failing God is a mask for misplaced loyalties.
  3. I’m too invested in the status quo and maintaining my image.
  4. To change my mind is to admit I was wrong in the first place.
  5. Other __________.

6. Who do you think found repentance (change of mind, reversal of direction) the most difficult—the Ninevites? or Jonah? Or God? (And why?)


7. How does it feel to do the right thing, especially if it wasn’t what you wanted to do initially?

  1. Empowering – I sense inner peace and alignment with my values.
  2. Challenging – I have to confront my fears and limitations.
  3. Rewarding – I see the positive impact I have on others.
  4. Confusing – I struggle to reconcile my desires with the expectations of others.
  5. Confirming – Obeying God doesn’t always feel good at first.
  6. Other __________.


8. How do you decide if what you are doing is what God wants, or what you want?

  1. By examining my motives and intentions for alignment with Scripture.
  2. By seeking guidance from trusted spiritual mentors.
  3. By quieting the noise and listening for a gentle nudge inside my head.
  4. By regularly examining my beliefs and being humble and open to new perspectives.
  5. By reflecting on the consequences of my actions, with an after-action report.
  6. Other __________.

Our Story

9. As a group, take time to reflect on the example of Jonah and the Ninevites and turn/return to God this week. Take turns sharing responses to one of these prompts:

  1. A conscious decision to prioritize my spiritual growth and connection with God.
  2. Being the mentor that someone needs as they open up to new perspectives on faith.
  3. Taking steps to serve the city where I live by doing good for others.
  4. Giving thanks for God’s amazing care every day.
  5. Deciding to turn from my wicked ways and stop doing __________.
  6. Other ___________.


10. How else can this group help you take that next step this week outlined in the previous question?

Ask for two or three volunteers to pray brief prayers. Let them pray for the group members as they take new spiritual steps this week.