From the Rut to the Ledge Discussion Questions
Is your book club looking for a good read? Here are some thoughtful discussion questions if you’d like to suggest “From the Rut to the Ledge” to your group. Above is a PDF link so you can print and share. And, please take a minute to write a review on Amazon and Good Reads to spread the word. Thanks friends!
- Where is the farthest you’ve ever traveled? Do you have the desire to go to more far-flung places? Why or why not?
- “From the Rut to the Ledge” isn’t just about travel or wanderlust; it’s about facing your fears, silencing all the “what-ifs,” and following your heart. What is something you’ve been yearning to do but have felt afraid or that the timing might not be right? What can you do to start to make your dreams a reality? Write your own bucket list.
- If you could visit one place in the entire world, where would it be? Why?
- Suzanne’s son was able to see the world and learn about new cultures as well as begin to comprehend how blessed we are as Americans. Even if you are unable to travel and serve in distant countries, what can you do to help your children develop a worldly and global view? In addition, how can you serve others even closer to home?
- In America today, there’s a temptation to be a helicopter parent, to hover over our children, and primed to throw them a life preserver at the first sign of distress. Yet, Suzanne has to learn to let go many times in her travels and face her parenting fears – from having Luke’s peanut allergy tested before they depart to terrifying tuk-tuk incidents. Ultimately, both she and her son benefit from this relinquishing of control. Luke grows more adaptable, independent, and confident as the trip goes on, and Suzanne learns to take a step back and to trust. What are some of your biggest parental fears? How can you learn to let go?
- Suzanne writes of her trip, “Our intention was to purposefully spend time together soaking up what life was like around the world. We wanted to peel away the layers of schedules and busyness that enveloped our family and spend weeks at a time in different places where we only knew each other. At home, it was sometimes hard to slow down and find time to play a simple board game or take a bike ride as a family.” Most parents can relate to how the busyness of life can erode family time. How can you make your time together more intentional closer to home? Brainstorm ideas on how to cultivate more time together as a family even if it’s as simple as weekly, evening walk together.
- Although Suzanne and her family thoroughly enjoyed their trip and believe it wasn’t a trip of a lifetime but the first of many, she was careful to not sugarcoat everything. For example, she shares her struggles of being with her son constantly as well as how India wasn’t their favorite destination. So often when we are trying something new, what is more challenging than the actual struggle is that it didn’t meet our perceived expectations. Have you ever decided to try something new and been surprised by how hard (or easy) it was? What have you learned from the times in your life when you have been pushed – whether physically, emotionally, intellectually, or spiritually?
- Do you see yourself as being open to trying new things? Why or why not? What steps can you take to “find your ledge”?
- The Rutledges truly have wanderlust and a curious and adventurous spirit. Others of us may have more vacation lust – that is, we may want to plan an escape from the exhaustion of daily life, but it could be much closer to home. Do you have true wanderlust or vacation lust? Why?
- The book’s epilogue concludes with the following, “I believe God knew our hearts’ desire to experience the world outside of our hometown. When He opened the doors for us, trust and dependence followed. Because of our faith, we experienced a journey that took us thousands of miles around the world but immensely closer to each other and to God.” Suzanne is open about how she and Mitch had to take many leaps of faith to make the journey happen as well as continue to do so when they encountered the unexpected during their travels. Similarly, God often asks us to step outside of our comfort zone and to trust Him. How can you do this in your daily life even without traveling the world?