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Sunrise on the Battery

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Description

She wanted her husband to attend the town’s society-driven church. God answered her prayer in a radical way.

An emptiness dogs Mary Lynn Scoville. But it shouldn’t.

After all, she’s achieved what few believed possible. Born in the rural south, she has reached the pinnacle of worldly success in Charleston, South Carolina. Married to a handsome real estate developer and mother to three accomplished daughters, Mary Lynn is one Debutante Society invitation away from truly having it all.

And yet, it remains—an emptiness that no shopping trip, European vacation, or social calendar can fill.

When a surprise encounter leads her to newfound faith, Mary Lynn longs to share it with her husband. But Jackson wrote God off long ago.

Mary Lynn prays for him on Christmas Eve . . . and her husband undergoes a life-altering Damascus Road experience. As Jackson begins to take the implications of the Gospel literally, Mary Lynn feels increasingly isolated from her husband . . . and betrayed by God. She only wanted Jackson beside her at church on Sunday mornings, not some Jesus freak who evangelizes prostitutes and invites the homeless to tea.

While her husband commits social suicide and the life they worked so hard for crumbles around them, Mary Lynn wonders if their marriage can survive. Or if perhaps there really is a more abundant life that Jackson has discovered, richer than any she’s ever dreamed of.

Reading Guides

Reading Group Guide

  1. In the opening of the novel, Mary Lynn thinks God is trying to get her attention. What do you make of what happened to her on her morning jog the day before Christmas?
     
  2. Do you believe God can break through the seemingly natural order of things and heal a wounded leg? Why or why not?
     
  3. In the beginning of the story, do you think Mary Lynn and Jackson have a strong marriage? In the Christmas day scene where Catherine receives a new car, Mary Lynn says she has become a woman "who bites her tongue." What has caused this committed relationship to begin to deteriorate?
     
  4. Jackson feels that his father woefully shortchanged him during his childhood. Why? In what ways are both Jackson and Mary Lynn still bound by (and living in reaction to) their childhood wounds?
     
  5. Before Jackson's conversion, what kind of parent is he? Consider his original mission statement. Why is he determined to give his children the life he never had? Is there a down-side or danger to this mission?
     
  6. Why is it necessary for Catherine to have a point-of-view in this story? What do you gain from her perspective?
     
  7. What kind of parent do you think Catherine will grow up to be?
     
  8. There are several "running" scenes in this book. What does the act of running come to symbolize for Catherine and Mary Lynn?
     
  9. Describe Jackson's conversion and Mary Lynn's reaction to it. Why does she have such a hard time once her prayer for her husband to have a faith gets answered? What does his newfound faith reveal about her faith and the idols in her own life?
     
  10. What do you make of Jackson's zealousness? Why doesn't he have any inhibitions about sharing his faith or about reaching out to all walks of life? Do you find his zeal refreshing or do you think he's too pushy? Why or why not?
     
  11. How has Mary Lynn and Jackson's relationship changed by the end of the story? In what ways has their marriage been renewed?
     
  12. The Scoville family mission statement changes dramatically over the course of the novel. By the end of the story the new mission is as follows: To love the Lord back with all of our heart, all our soul and all our mind and to love our neighbors to the ends of the earth as we would love ourselves. Imagine the Scovilles five years from now. What do their lives look like?
     

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Sunrise on the Battery, Beth Webb Hart
  • Sunrise on the Battery, Beth Webb Hart

Details

She wanted her husband to attend the town’s society-driven church. God answered her prayer in a radical way.

An emptiness dogs Mary Lynn Scoville. But it shouldn’t.

After all, she’s achieved what few believed possible. Born in the rural south, she has reached the pinnacle of worldly success in Charleston, South Carolina. Married to a handsome real estate developer and mother to three accomplished daughters, Mary Lynn is one Debutante Society invitation away from truly having it all.

And yet, it remains—an emptiness that no shopping trip, European vacation, or social calendar can fill.

When a surprise encounter leads her to newfound faith, Mary Lynn longs to share it with her husband. But Jackson wrote God off long ago.

Mary Lynn prays for him on Christmas Eve . . . and her husband undergoes a life-altering Damascus Road experience. As Jackson begins to take the implications of the Gospel literally, Mary Lynn feels increasingly isolated from her husband . . . and betrayed by God. She only wanted Jackson beside her at church on Sunday mornings, not some Jesus freak who evangelizes prostitutes and invites the homeless to tea.

While her husband commits social suicide and the life they worked so hard for crumbles around them, Mary Lynn wonders if their marriage can survive. Or if perhaps there really is a more abundant life that Jackson has discovered, richer than any she’s ever dreamed of.

More Information

Length 304 Pages
Publication Date October 11, 2011
Company
  • Thomas Nelson
ISBN-10 1595542000
ISBN-13 9781595542007
Height 8.3"
Width 5.5"