Sensitive Strength: Chapter 9 {Momnipotent Book Club}

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Welcome to the Momnipotent Book Club! We’re reading Danielle Bean’s new book, Momnipotent: The Not-So-Perfect Woman’s Guide to Catholic Motherhood.

Momnipotent Book Club

How often do you stop to consider your strength? Ever? I do after giving birth but not usually other than that. I never really thought too much about it until it came up as my assignment for this book study.

When I do consider it, sensitive is never a part of it. My mind automatically goes to how well I function when ill or that my family never runs out of toilet paper or that I wish I were still as physically strong as I used to be.

But sensitive? I would say that I’m like a bull in a china shop except I’ve seen that and nothing actually breaks. Me? I would break stuff all. over. the. place. Bring on the mosaics! Ahem.

God, in his infinite wisdom, gave me two little girls. One is fairly stoic, bright, and considerate. But when she is concerned or upset she HAS to have a conversation about it. I’ve finally figured out how to tell the difference between stalling for bed and needing to talk it out. My other daughter is either on top of the world or in the pit of despair. She, too, requires a finesse for managing her emotions.

I spent years wondering what their deal was. Then I realized that there was nothing wrong with them. There was something wrong with ME. The Martha in me is spending her time checking off tasks on her to-do list and trying to cram more than can be done into a single day, and she hasn’t left time to observe. To comfort. To listen. To love. To be their strength or to help them find theirs.

And sometimes, strength is not so much in the heavy lifting and the kinds of tasks that Martha had on her mind. Other times, it is simply to be like Mary and mention a need to the right person or at the right time.

Last week, my mother needed help with a broken tooth. I was relaying my difficulties in coming up with a solution to my husband. Within minutes, he secured advice from a dentist friend and had an appointment for her. He was on his way to the other side of the state to get her before I had quite figured out what happened! And then he took charge of another issue between my mother and grandmother and had a talk with them both.  My uncle and I were both unsuccessful where he was able to raise the issues.

Sensitive strength: to notice people’s needs, stand up for injustice, and sometimes to just step back and let others do the “heavy lifting.”

To Ponder, Reflect, and Discuss:

  1. If you have trouble noticing the needs and feelings of others, have you considered why? Is there anything you need to do or to stop doing that would help?
  2. Sometimes part of having a sensitive strength is the ability to know what needs to happen, setting things in motion, and then stepping back.  What is something that needs to happen that you personally cannot (or should not) do?   Pray for guidance as to who or where you need to bring this need.

Feel free to comment on your own thoughts from this week’s reading, your impressions and reflections, and/or your answers to these questions.

Next week, we’ll cover Chapter 10: We Need Each Other. For the complete reading schedule and information about our Book Club, visit the Momnipotent Book Club page.

Copyright 2014 Jen Steed

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