Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Wednesday with Words: Hannah Coulter

It is difficult to read whole books, these days. I have been snatching moments while nursing. There is a book on the windowsill in my bathroom. My library basket is full of books I want to read, but will probably not get to right now. I feel like this last month or so since baby AJ has learned to crawl has been the most overwhelmingly busy time I've had since I became a mother. Meanwhile, I have joined a book club. I really could not resist, you see. We are reading Hannah Coulter, by Wendell Berry.

I have made it through the first five chapters so far. Thankfully this is one book that is best read slowly anyway.
"This is the story of my life, that while I lived it weighed upon me and pressed against me and filled all my senses to overflowing and now is like a dream dreamed. So close to the end now, what do I look forward to? 'Today shalt thou be with me in paradise.' Some morning, I pray, I'll have the good happiness of 'the man who woke up dead,' who Burley Coulter used to tell about.
This is my story, my giving of thanks." (Hannah Coulter, p. 5)
I think Hannah Coulter has the heart of wisdom of Psalm 90:
"So teach us to number our days
that we may get a heart of wisdom."

Another quote that provoked meditation in me as a mother and the educator of my children was Hannah speaking of her grandmam:
"She shaped my life, without of course knowing what my life would be. She taught me many things I was going to need to know, without either of us knowing I would need to know them. She made the connections that made my life, as you will see." (Hannah Coulter, p. 11)
I know that God knows the future of my children. That He is using me in just such a role is exciting, frightening, and humbling, all at the same time. But I trust He knows what He's doing, even if I don't.

What have you been reading?