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My Winnowing Life , Part One ©

Folding the piece of paper that would change the course of my life, I carefully slipped it in the envelope, sealed it and delivered my fate. That moment, the winnowing of my future, came as a rush of wind that overtook me and lead the way.

How could I possibly turn in an immediate resignation from an eleven year upper management position with no other job secured?

My Winnowing Life, Part One - Bethany at office

With words; I simply sat down at my computer and wrote out my future.

I walked down the old narrow sidewalk on the west side of Portland, making mental note of everything I  want to remember of this place and the people I worked with that I held so dear…for so many years. I push the pain of my prickly, tender feelings aside…and remember this almost eight months later: the warmth of the sun on my face, the air lighter and the load… lifted.

I remember those three sensations now as I write.

The never-ending statistics, endless reports, staff issues, the diminishing sense of worth to the company no matter how hard I worked and the weight of that knowledge held me captive, until now.

My sense of financial security had become my worst enemy. I held on to my position, my performance and my addiction to work with a grip tighter than I held on to my relationships. I was no fool, and work is hard to come by. I was co-owner of a residential home construction business for 20 years before this job. I know what tough times are, the “feast or famine” as my partner and I called it. In this position, like my previous, time was spent in relentless hours in the pursuit of raising the bar, for me, and those around me. Usually, I was the first one in my office and the last to leave. I loved to work. The harder I worked, the more work was expected. I loved the insanity. If I was to live life the way I knew deep inside it should be lived, the insanity had to stop.

I walked out of the doors I had unlocked and opened for the staff for eleven years never to return.

That was July 1, 2014.

These months have been challenging beyond anything I could have expected. My bank account shows it. The balance I had acquired over the years, now carefully stretch out to meet the other demands I placed on myself. Numbers show how quickly years drift in to the abyss.

Life, as I know it now, prompts me to dig deep; to move beyond my performance addiction and my lust for meeting an unattainable standard.

I am moving past in order to move forward.

Will I be able trust God with my future, my financial security, to live life on the new edge, with only Him to hang on to?  Will I listen to Him, to write the words burning in my chest? Will I let go of writing words for an empty report or to calculate numbers for a statistic that will change in 30 days?

Yes, I am doing it now, imperfect as it is.

My Winnowing Life Part One Bethany at home writing

Taking a look back, this journey began in late 2013 when praying… a simple two-word prayer, ” BREAK ME! “.  It’s all I could say. I made this decision lying on my floor, face down and arms stretched out. I was broken before the carefully spoken words left my lips and floated in the air.  I knew what they meant. I was exhausted in my complicated spirit and ready for God to take over the control I often struggle with.

Truthfully, I couldn’t possibly understand the spiritual ramifications of the winnowing process that would take place in my life. However, I was purposefully willing for the process to take place. I was wanting God, desiring God, needing God and I know He was wanting me. I was lost somewhere along the way in all those long empty hours of work. Did I want what He wanted for my life more than what I had chosen for myself?

The moment came, when I folded that piece of paper, slipped it into the envelope and stopped the insanity. I moved out of the way and invited God to once again sit back down in the director’s chair of my life.

Taking the steps forward walking down that old sidewalk for the last time I could feel the sun again, with the deep “knowing” that the winnowing process was good.  In my new journey, I will be okay in His tender hands.

The new path.

The new path.


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