This reading group guide forBook of Dreams includes discussion questions. The suggested questions are intended to help your reading group find new and interesting angles and topics for your discussion. We hope that these ideas will enrich your conversation and increase your enjoyment of the book.
Elena’s experiences suggest that following God’s lead takes her in a very different direction from what she had expected. Do you see God’s lead as offering an easier road?
Do you hold certain assumptions about receiving a spiritual gift? Are these images based on a desire to do God’s will, or your own desire to receive acclaim and ease?
Elena realizes that she may have had a hand in holding herself back from true healing. She comes to see that her present perspective, how she defines herself, is based in part on her sorrow. To give this up and accept full healing means losing a connection to her deceased husband. And yet, until she relinquishes this hold, she cannot accept a vision of what future God might have in store. Can you find a parallel in your own life, where holding on to some less than positive or healing perspective might be keeping you from what you say you want, or what God wants for you?
In this story, several characters experience what at the time appear to be monumental setbacks. And yet these same events prove to be great leaps forward, both for them personally and for their causes. Can you recall a time when what first seemed to be a defeat actually became a lifetime triumph? Can you look back now and see God’s hand at work in these experiences?
In her encounter group, Elena urges the participants to write down the request they are asking of God. One member of the group confesses later that this proved vital. Otherwise he would have risked forgetting the problem and its solution, by simply moving on to the next unresolved issue. Have you ever asked God for aid, then neglected to recognize his hand at work in your life? Have you failed to thank him for a gift like this? Why do you think this happened? Do you find it hard to acknowledge God’s power at work in your life?
The basis for Elena’s gift is a series of meditations on the Lord’s Prayer. Have you ever spent time examining this prayer? If not, do you feel this might be an enriching experience, one you should take on? If so, have you experienced any particular gift of the Spirit that you would like to share?