Thursday, January 25, 2018

In Which The Book Club Morphs Into An Open House Before It Even Starts

All week I've been thinking about the best ways to make the Invitation to Solitude and Silence Book Club more accessible to every book lover who's interested.

And all I kept thinking about was the New Year's Day open houses we used to have back in the day.  I'd bake and cook and whip up all kinds of concoctions and then we'd throw open our doors for eight hours or so.  It was so much fun squeezing dozens of people into our little ranch house ... and no one seemed to mind that there wasn't a seat to be found and that the noise level could get a bit numbing with laughter and shouting and kids running every which way.

Some people were there at the stroke of noon and stayed til long after dark, claiming a prime seat on the sofa and not in the least interested in leaving.  Others came late and left early, or arrived when the dishes held nothing left but crumbs.  It didn't matter a bit.

We were all together and we had a good time.

My sister called yesterday with a bunch of really good questions on how this Book Club will work.  Just a few clarifications are in order. 

The Book Club will now be known as The Open House.  I want you to feel comfortable and free to come and go as you can.  Calling it a Book Club doesn't capture where I want to go with these gatherings.

We'll be talking about Ruth Haley Barton's Invitation to Solitude and Silence: Experiencing God's Transforming Presence for six weeks beginning next Thursday or Friday, February 1st or 2nd.  The Kindle edition is here.  

The 1st post will go up at some point during those days.  We'll be discussing the first 2 chapters of the book, Beyond Words and Beginnings.

You don't have to sign up or commit or tell me you're coming. 

The book is only about 140 pages, but you don't have to read it to join us.

You don't have to show up at every gathering.

You can sit quiet and just observe.

You participate by leaving a comment just like you do on any blog post.

Comments don't close after the weekend, the conversation continues as long as someone is talking.  I'll be encouraging you to not only leave a comment but also to graciously respond to each other's musings by hitting the REPLY button under their comments.  Just like in a real in-person book club.

No pressure at all.  There's no pass or fail.  Just come as you are.  The welcome mat is out.

I can't wait!

Questions?  Please ask ...

Read More ...
Here's why I chose this book as our first Open House read



you'll find me 


  1. The Open House sounds great! I like that there isn't a specific time to commit to! I will be there.

    1. Sister Girl ... thanks for the questions, the comments, the encouragement. You helped clarify things for us all!

      60 looks good on you!


  2. Look at me the 2nd to comment. I think I just broke a record or something?

    I love discussions and even better are book discussions. I have read some of the material so I am ready.

    1. I love chatting with you about those things that matter most. I'm so glad you're on board, Buds!

      It's not in person, but it'll have to do for now, right?


  3. Really appreciate you giving more details about what we will all be doing (or not doing) here. Now that my MIL is staying with us indefinitely, I'm not sure how much time I will have to read, so it is a relief to know that I can simply tune in to see what others are saying about this book. Blessings, Linda!

    1. Dear Martha ... thanks for taking the time to leave a note ... I'm guessing this is a challenging transition for you. I hope that what appears here in the weeks ahead will be a huge encouragement for your soul as He whispers, 'peace, be still.'

      Please stay in touch as you are able, friend ... I'm praying.

  4. Linda,
    It sounds wonderful. Right now, with the Foundation and squeezing in writing in the early am hours, I just don't have time for a group study. Right now God has me reading through Proverbs and finding it much more encouraging than finger wagging than I first thought. Will try to pop in as I always enjoy your insights.
    Bev xx

    1. Proverbs is a favorite, isn't it?! There's so much meat packed into one single verse ... I could spend forever there.

      Please do feel like you can pop in and out and join the conversation as you have time. Your input would be so valuable.

      Weekend blessings to you ...

  5. Hi Linda. You really make this Open House sound so inviting and relaxing. :) Even though I can't commit to reading the book right now, I'll be looking forward to gleaning some gold nuggets about experiencing God's Transforming Presence more deeply from all of you. Love and hugs to you!

    1. I'm confident that you'll be sharing some of those gold nuggets from your overflowing heart, friend!

      Looking forward to us all giving and receiving. God is good!

  6. Hi Linda!

    I love the name The Open House. My parents used to host the an Open House every holiday season and I loved it growing up. It felt comfortable, warm and inviting. This sounds just like you.

    I just purchased the book as a birthday present to myself so I will be in and out during the Open House. The book sounds perfect for me right now and I can't wait to get started.

    1. What a perfect birthday present to give yourself! Investing in your soul, your spiritual growth, your impact here and there.

      And let's hear it for open houses ... warmth, openness, comfort, joy, safety!

      Love that you're going to be with us for this, Mary!

  7. I see a Hostess of the Year award in your future, sweet friend. So excited!


Dear Reader ~

Technical glitches happen.

* sigh *

Doesn't seem to be a place to leave your comment? Or your comment doesn't show up within an hour or so?

I'd love if you'd email me your contribution ... I'd be delighted to hand post it as soon as possible.

lindastoll @ juno . com

My apologies. And thanks for the grace ...