Reading Group Guide
1. By the end of the story, Mariette and Thayne had experienced “a fine life” together as a married couple and had gained the approval of her parents. But when they met, Mariette’s parents adamantly forbade their relationship. In fact, it was Mariette’s disobedience that resulted in their getting married. This raises some questions:
a. Do you think Mariette was wrong for defying her parents, and if so, do you feel any of their early misfortunes were a consequence of those actions?
b. If Mariette had listened to her parents and ended her relationship with Thayne, do you think she would have missed God’s purpose for her life? Do you think it’s possible she missed God’s purpose for her life by not listening to her parents?
2. Why do you think God waited so long to reveal himself to Mariette?
3. Which attributes of Christ did Thayne possess that made him a better witness for Christ? Which helped him be a better witness to his wife, who for years lacked his passion for God?
4. How is the story of Mariette and Thayne’s journey symbolic of our role as the bride of Christ?
5. Without the influence of God on Thayne’s life, do you think his and Mariette’s passion would have ever blossomed into the love they shared by the end of the story? What does love entail that passion doesn’t and how do these differences mirror our ever-maturing relationship with God?
6. Could it have been God’s mercy and grace that redirected the fate of Mariette and Thayne’s relationship? Besides giving us eternal life, what are some of the ways God’s mercy and grace have saved you from the consequences of your actions?
7. How were Mariette’s negative experiences in Logan’s Creek useful in eventually drawing her to the heart of God? How has God used hurtful or difficult times in your life to strengthen your faith and/or relationship with him?
8. As a pastor’s wife who lacked a personal relationship with God, Mariette was given a role that, at least initially, she could not understand. Simultaneously, everyone criticized her every move and mistake. Have you ever felt God has given you a purpose or a role that you and others around you did not understand? How did you deal with it and what did you learn about God’s ways? Did you obey immediately or did you first run the other direction?
9. What are the similarities and differences between Mariette’s having no relationship with God and the people of Logan’s Creek’s “dead” relationship with God?
10. The Bible tells us, “All things work together for the good of those who love the Lord and are called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:28). How was God able to weave the lives of everyone involved to both renew and develop their spiritual walks? Do you think Logan’s Creek would have gone unchanged if Mariette or Thayne had ignored God’s calling?