By Henri J. M. Nouwen
Opening thoughts and basis for discussion
Have you ever felt worthless? What helped you to overcome this feeling?
Fecundity and Fear
Identify some of the forces in our world that lead to feeling useless and sterile. How do these forces relate to fear?
What is the difference between productivity and fecundity? How does an overemphasis on productivity diminish the spiritual dimension of life?
Do you tend to emphasize doing over being? Recall a time in you life when you simply allowed yourself to be.
Fecundity and Love
Why is vulnerability necessary to a fruitful life? How does the life of Jesus manifest this vulnerability?
Do you consider yourself a grateful person? When do you find it difficult to be grateful and what can you do to regain a sense of gratitude?
How does care differ from control? What enables people to be caring instead of controlling?
Fecundity and Mission
In what ways is mission more than merely improving the physical lives of the poor?
How can you find new life in the concept of fecundity as Henri has evoked it?