Monday, July 27, 2009

Discussion Questions for "Zora and Nicky"

1. Zora and Nicky meet at a home Bible study. What do they see reflected in this community that they haven’t found in their home churches?

2. Billie tells Zora that at the Beloved Community a stranger is someone who “is disconnected from love.” In what ways are Zora and Nicky strangers at the beginning of the novel?

3. Richard, the author of Good News for Rascals, Rebels, and Whores, is perhaps the most missional character in the novel. Do you think his brokenness makes him easier or more difficult to relate to?

4. When Nicky is struggling with feelings of lust, Richard tells him to think about whether the love of God wants him to defile Zora. What does this question say about the way that Richard views God? How does Richard’s perspective differ from the way Nicky views God?

5. Have you ever experienced a relationship or community where you knew that you were loved at the core of who you are, regardless of your past? If so, how did this knowledge change you?

6. Zora and Nicky are immediately attracted to each other. How does this initial attraction grow into a more mature love by the end of the novel?

7. Zora’s father doesn’t want Zora to lack for anything. How is this desire a reflection of his past?

8. The Sankofa bird’s head is turned back to symbolize that what we’ve lost is in our past, and only in going back can we truly go forward. How do Zora and Nicky come to terms with their pasts in this novel?

9. At the beginning of the novel, both Zora and Nicky are quick to point fingers at each other. How are they forced to confront the pride and racism in their own lives?

10.Do you think that racism is an issue in our culture today? In the church? Why, or why not?

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