Welcome to Week 4 of Wisdom and Wonder! We hope you had a wonderful Fourth of July. Now, back to the reading challenge!
For a quick review, here is what we’ve covered so far:
Week 1 —Turning to God, Away from Sin
Week 2 —God’s Word is a Treasure
Week 3 —Responding to Correction
Home is behind, the world ahead and there are many paths to tread —Bilbo Baggins
All of us are faced with many different paths in life. But, ultimately, there are only two destinations. As Proverbs says, there is a way that seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death.
How do we find the right path? —By believing and trusting in God’s word and in the person and work of Jesus Christ. (Wise Up, Chapter 4)
How do we keep following the right path? —By surrounding ourselves with friends who will not tempt us off the good path. (Wise Up, Chapter 10)
As we dig deeper into this week’s theme, here are some general discussion questions —good for any book— as well as some specific discussion questions about our anchor books.
General Discussion Questions
Our choices —and our paths— as well as our friends, are all connected. Can you think of a story where the character is faced with two very different choices?
- How does the character decide what to do?
- What role do the character’s friends play in the decision
—One classic Biblical example I thought of is Rehoboam, Solomon’s son. Despite all his father’s wise advice in Proverbs, what does Rehoboam do in 1 Kings 12?
Jesus talks about two paths in Matthew 7:13-14. Think about some of your favorite stories. Which “way” does the main character choose?
Keeping thinking of your favorite story. Does the main character have friends? Do the friends help the main character make good decisions? Or, do the friends encourage the main character into making bad decisions?
What are some of your favorite stories that involve good friends? Think about the story; what makes the friendship, “good”?
When you’re grown-up, the person you marry will influence which path you take and what choices you make. Can you think of a married couple in a story who encourage each other to make good decisions? How about a married couple who make foolish decisions?
Anchor Book Discussion Questions
Which stories do you think best illustrate the idea of two paths?
One of my favorite stories in Wise Words is The Magical Walnut. How does the woodcutter stay on the good path?
In your opinion, which story best shows the importance of good company and friends?
The Wilderking Trilogy
Describe Aidan’s two closest friends: Prince Steren and Dobro, the feechie.
- How are they good friends to Aidan?
- Do you think they are good companions for Aidan, encouraging him to stay on the right path? Why or why not?
How does King Darrow make decisions? Does he listen to advice?
The Playmaker Duo
The Merchant of Venice is one of Shakespeare’s most “problematic” plays because of the picture he presents of the Jewish banker Shylock. Yet even though Shylock is not a likeable character Shakespeare at least tries to present him as a human being more than a stereotype. Read his famous speech beginning in Act III, Scene 1 (here’s the movie version). Compare the speech with his behavior in the trial scene (Act IV, Scene 1). Can you understand his motive for revenge? Would it help him to demonstrate “the quality of mercy?”
- In The Playmaker, what has Richard “stored in his heart” that helps him get a job? How might this keep him from taking some wrong paths in the future?
- What do you think of Richard’s decision to help his father? Is this a wise path?
- In The True Prince, Kit takes the wrong path with questionable companions. Where do you think this path started? Was it due mostly to bad company, or more to his own bad attitudes? What do you think was the turning point for him to get off the wrong track?
- How does scripture help Kit in his greatest trouble? What is its meaning for him?