1. At the beginning of his story, Michael refers to it as a confession? Why?
2. Was it a mistake for Michael Palmer to enlist?
3. When Michael Palmer goes off to war, he thinks his enemies are all members of the Confederate States Army. What other, and perhaps more dangerous, enemies confront him?
4. Describe the daily diet of the soldiers while “on the march.” How did their diet differ while in winter encampment?
5. How does Jessie Anne help Michael survive the war? How does Jessie Anne change in the process?
6. The chapter titles sometimes have double meanings. In the chapter “A Grand Design,” how was the death of John Robinson part of God’s plan and how did it work to Michael’s good? Think in both short and long terms?
7. Why does Michael react one way to killing a man at Chancellorsville and then react in a different way one year later at the Wilderness?
8. How does Michael aid in his own downward spiral into darkness?
9. What spiritual lesson did Michael learn while at war?
10. How is Michael’s story similar to that of the Apostle Peter in the gospels?
11. In the last two chapters, how much does Michael contribute toward his own restoration? Why is this so?
12. In the last three sentences of his story, Michael looks to the past, to the present, and to the future. How do Michael's words apply to the story he has written and to the time in his life he wrote it (1882)?