God's Guest List
Welcoming Those Who Influence Our Lives
Through touching true stories and inspiring insight Debbie Macomber takes readers on a journey to discover the shaping influence others have on us and the power we have to shape and influence those whose paths cross ours.
Each of us have “influencers” that have affected our lives—some from a distance, some through word or deed, some through example, be it good or bad. Often we don’t even recognize the deep impact others have had and how God has used them to shape us into who we are. By pausing to recognize these influences we begin to grasp how God’s guest list had a purpose far beyond what we imagined. We begin to see the seeds of influence that grew into our personal values and character.
In some people God invites into our lives, we see only what appears to be painful or negative influence. We bear the scars of disappointment, hurt, betrayal, and pain. Here Macomber redirects our attention, opening our eyes to how those experiences prompted strength, resilience, resolve, decisions, and choices about how we would change and who we would become. In other instances, God has surprised us with just the people at just the right time to support, teach, lead, or love us, but perhaps we haven't quite recognized God's timing and work through these "guests."
But perhaps the greatest treasure this book holds is the power to grasp our own power to influence others, and even to anticipate what lives we have yet to touch. In the tradition of How to Win Friends and Influence People, Macomber casts a vision to seize every opportunity to be a positive and faithful influence on others. With this realization comes the willingness and anticipation to live with the door of our lives wide open to greet each new life God brings across the threshold.
God's Guest List is filled with true stories and rich insight that will forever change how you see the people in your life.
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PRESENTS, PEOPLE, AND ONE MORE LIST
An Unfinished Guest List
THERE’S A STORY that goes something like this:
A woman arrived at the gates of heaven to be met by St. Peter.
“You may first want to join the others at the throne,” he said to her, “and then greet those you loved on earth. But when you are ready, I’ll take you on a tour of heaven.”
When the time came for her tour, she could hardly take it all in. It reminded her a little of her earthly home, but she could see that earth had only been a pale shadow of what she was seeing now. They explored every nook... see more
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Reading Group Guide
1. What is it about choosing just one word to chew on for a whole year that seems like such an adventure? Have you ever had a word or an idea crop up again and again over a short period of time? What was that word or idea? Why do you think it kept surfacing?
2. In 1977, the word that kept cropping up for Debbie was the word desire. What does that word conjure up for you? If you could name one desire—a secret dream—for your life, what would it be? (Don’t be afraid to dream big.)
3. For Debbie, the word believe came at a time of great uncertainty, right at the turn of the millennium with all the hype of Y2K. Does this give us insight into God’s timing as he gives us a word assignment? Why do you think he gave Debbie the word believe when she was facing misgivings and fear? Why not courage or another buck-up type word?
4. Debbie confessed that she chose hunger in 1979 as she struggled with her eating addiction. She thought the word would take her one place, but she ended up learning something entirely different. Has that ever happened to you? Have you ever set out thinking you were going to explore one thing only to find out God had a different plan? What was the surprise lesson you learned?
5. The year 1986 was a troubled one for Debbie. Why do you think God chose trust? Do you see God’s hand in the choice of words? Do you think we are somehow asking for trouble when we choose a word that only grows out of chall see more