Reading Group Guide
1. Have you ever seen someone hold up a John 3:16 sign at a sporting event? What did you think about it at the time? Did you know what the verse said/meant? How do you think this verse is the key to everything?
2. In Chapter 1, Maya says she is striving to be the person she wants to be. Is this goal common to all people or are some people content with who they are? Which is better: to strive for change or to be okay with who you are?
3. Maya followed her boss’s instructions toward success but went too far. Do you think she should have been held more or less responsible than she was? Have you ever experienced a situation at work where a coworker cut ethical corners? What were the results?
4. What do you think of William and Carrie’s vow to stay pure until marriage? Is this feasible in today’s world?
5. At Billy’s funeral, Agata says Billy was praying for her and cites a verse: “The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and produces wonderful results.” What constitutes being a “righteous” person? Who, in your life, would you deem righteous?
6. Peter gets seduced away from the foundation of his life. When have you or those you loved been lured away from your foundation? What came of the experience? Are you better now for having gone through it?
7. Roman put all his hopes and dreams into his son. Is this inevitable for parents? Is it a good or bad thing?
8. In Chapter 10, Maya tries to close the doors on her old life --- her past mistakes --- so she can continue on a new path. When have you closed such doors? Did it help you move ahead? Or did it matter? What doors should you close today?
9. Velvet imposed punishment on herself for past sins. How do you think her life would have been different if she’d forgiven herself for her past and moved on sooner? What do you need to forgive yourself for?
10. Maya and Sal were obsessed with having a child. Their prayers were answered --- though not as they expected. What prayer of yours has been answered in unexpected ways?
11. What is Lianne’s true personality, i.e. is her tough-girl number genuine or a front? Are other characters pretending to be something they’re not? Maya? Roman? Peter? Velvet?
12. What do you think of Lianne’s decision regarding her child?
13. Velvet and Roman decide their relationship was not healthy. In what way?
14. John Gillingham wrote a book about his mistakes and what he learned from them. How is your life better --- or worse --- for the mistakes you’ve made?
15. Maya is affected by her parents’ view of adoption. How have you let your parents’ opinions affect your decisions? What were the results?
16. Agata believes that sometimes God waits to grant an answer to prayer until one particular person prays. What do you think about this?
17. Many of the characters receive nudges: the multiple “Johns,” the red signs, the number 316... What nudges have you experienced? What happened when you followed them? Or when you didn’t?
18. In the end, the characters discover their true purpose. Have you discovered yours?