Today, I hurt The Girl’s feelings. Unfortunately, it’s not the first time that’s happened and it, most assuredly, won’t be the last. You see, The Girl is a very, very sensitive little girl. I, on the other hand, have a tendency to not be very sensitive at all (though I hate to throw out the “insensitive” word). I thought she was being too whiny and impatient about something and so I used the word “shut-up.” Well, seeing as how I’ve been harping on her for days that a mere “shhh!” to someone else is flat-out rude, “shut-up” is tantamount to a curse word! What’s more, I didn’t even know of its ill nature nor that I had pierced the heart of my little girl. Instead, I had to hear it from Boy Genius, who, until my debacle was reigning champion in the race to being The Girl’s arch-enemy. For, just minutes before, she and Boy Genius had been screaming and grunting, in turn, at one another over something that is now no doubt less than a memory. Nonetheless, my harsh words pushed her straight “into the arms” of her brother for comfort, and he dutifully reported to me, “[The Girl] told me that you hurt her feelings because you said a bad word to her that started with an ‘s.'” Of course, in my obvious innocence, I responded, “What’d I say?…I mean, I didn’t say a bad word; what’s she talking about?” Once daddy and I had deciphered the word (because of course Boy Genius couldn’t just tell me since it’s a “bad word” and seeing as how he can’t yet spell…), my first reaction was to rant about how she “needed to hush because she was a whiner” and “my gosh, why must she be sooo sensitive all the time,” and “don’t I say that all the time anyway,” and blah, blah, blah. Thankfully, though, the Spirit of God came over me, kept my behind firmly planted in the chair and brought to mind one of my favorite Sunday school lessons from our church in Tennessee. Jean Young, who co-teaches the Shepherding a Child’s Heart Adult Bible Study Class at Brentwood Baptist Church, talked quite a bit about her two sons and how they were very different from one another. In a rather moving moment once, she explained how, despite her propensity to try to “toughen up” her oldest son, she truly hoped she never did, because he was “wonderfully made” by God. Recalling that day in class that I had vowed to be more careful about trying, consciously or otherwise, to strip The Girl of her sensitivity, I instead asked her to forgive me for hurting her feelings. She did forgive me and I got a big sweet hug as a bonus! She is a sweet little girl, with lots of feelings for herself and for others, and I must take care not to trample on those feelings. For she is wonderfully made by the hands of God … even when she’s whiny.