Compensation Beyond All Price

How deep do the words of others sink under your skin? How far do you carry them after you have shut the book, set it down, and walked away?
Have you ever found yourself reading a line over, not because your mind had started to drift, but because you thought,

“Yes, this. This is exactly right.”

It’s as if the writer had risen from the page and placed a hand heavy on your heart, scooped just enough right from you, and found the words, oh, the words, to make that mess into a miracle.

Some see a book marked with pencil, pages dog-eared and worn, as a sign of disrespect for the author. I disagree. Words set right send me scrambling for a pencil for underlining, or, if I must, a pen. (A pencil seems more of a quiet nod of acknowledgment, with hope that future readings won’t be affected by the current quickening of my pulse. I am torn between wanting to remember and wanting to forever be experiencing things for the first time.)

The breadth and depth of some books beg for the time with them to be approached with a certain solemnity. I have picked up books like this with the house abuzz and had to set them back down.

This is a conversation that needs to happen in private.

In the dark, after all the creatures in the house have stilled, with a single lamp lit I may pick it up again. I’ll take a moment to look over the cover, lingering with the author’s picture if there is one.
“Sit,” they seem to say, and I do. Then reaching out as if to put my hand on theirs, I open the book.

This collecting of words and phrases has led me to create a small gallery of quotes to share with you. It will be to the right side if you are on your computer, or at the bottom of the page if you visit from your phone. Clicking on an image will open the gallery so you may scroll through. All of the quotes are here in this post, too. They are all designed to be shared, so please feel free! If you hover on any one of the images, a “Pin” button will appear, allowing you to pin them to Pinterest.

What about you? Do you mark notes in books you read? What was the last thing you marked? Would you be willing to share it here in the comments?

goldberg

thurston

taking_notes_dufresne

king

lamott

L'Engle

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8 thoughts on “Compensation Beyond All Price”

    1. The first book I started marking on my own was Gatsby. I couldn’t help myself. And if it is a book I borrowed I find a place to write down what I love, or, I take a picture of the page with my Boone so I can write it down later. What I need now is a single place to dump all these things, as they are scattered all over.

    1. Thanks, Allen! Do you mark in books? I won’t remember things if I don’t. I will remember where in the book something might be, and even where on the page. I won’t necessarily remember what it says. I call it an “out of focus photographic memory.”

  1. As you know, I am an underliner, or highlighter, or other means to remind me of something profound that I have read, but my mind being filled with too much, may not remember it without finding it again. I told you I am once again reading “One thousand gifts” and highlighting truths the author Ann Voskamp has shared with those who also wish to experience God fully right where He has placed them. Some of my pages are almost all yellow! So here is a quote from her book (it was hard to choose just one!) “Slapping a sloppy brush of thanksgiving over everything in my life leaves me deeply thankful for very few things in my life……(remember the infinitesimals)..life-changing gratitude does not fasten to a life unless nailed through with one very specific nail at a time.” Oh, I could go on and on!

    As the apostle Paul states in Philippians 4:11-12, I have LEARNED how to be content……I have LEARNED the secret of living in every situation.

    It doesn’t just come naturally. I am working, or should I say, constantly LEARNING to live the Thanksgiving!

    Love you, Mom

    1. Yeah, I’m pretty much the same way with that book. There is a lot that leaves an impression! If you haven’t been yet, I highly recommend going to her website and spending some time there. Great posts, free artwork you can print out (I just printed one out yesterday about perfectionism…) and lots more.

  2. “If you sit on the bank of a river, you see only a small part of its surface. And yet, the water before your eyes is proof of unknowable depths.”
    –‘The Red Tent’ by Anita Diamant

    Your blog has been an unexpected inspiration to me. I am grateful for it. -erin

    1. This is a great quote. Maybe I’ll add it to my pictures here. I’m glad you have found some inspiration here. I’m looking forward to spending some time looking around your blog.

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