The last week of August, in 2013, I walked into a friends place of business, and said, “You know anyone that’s hiring?”
I was — to put it bluntly — desperate. After thirty-three years of vocational ministry, at the age of fifty-five, I was starting over. I needed a new direction for my life.
I needed a JOB. I needed a paycheck.
My friend picked up the phone, and called his childhood friend, who was now one of the owners of a logistics company. Within a few days, I had an interview. The owner said it might be an opportunity to “get my foot in the door.” 🤔
I showed up for the interview wearing a suit & tie. Turns out, I was a bit overdressed. The interviewer literally tried to talk me out of the job. “I’m not sure that you would be happy doing this kind of work.”
I said, “Look, I just want a job. You tell me what you want me to do, and I’ll do it. Tell me what you want me to wear, and I’ll wear it.” Any sense of entitlement or arrogance was pretty much gone. 🙄
I hope I never get it back. Seriously. 🙏
I got the job, but only after convincing him that I was willing and able to dress down to a more casual attire, suitable for warehouse work. I was hired to “maintain FDA-level cleanliness standards in a food-grade warehouse.”
They needed a janitor. 🙄 In a warehouse. A really good janitor. In a really BIG warehouse.
“Here am I, Lord. Send me.” 🤦♂️
So, I “stuck my foot in the door”. 👍 My first day on the job at Port City Logistics was Wednesday, September 11, 2013. I remember saying a prayer before I went into the building that day. “Lord, thanks for the job. Help me to be grateful for this job. Help me to do it well…and help me to honor You…and not embarrass You, or my family.”
I’m not saying that it was easy. I had to shut out that voice (👿) that wanted me to dwell on…things that had been lost. But, God answered that prayer…or, at least the part about being grateful. For the next fourteen months, I never hated my job, or resented going to work. That’s the truth. 🤷🏻♂️
In October, 2014, when I approached the owner about the possibility of something “more substantial” 🤑🙄, I assured him that it wasn’t because I didn’t like my job. The first week of November, 2014, I moved into a new position, in the office, helping to take care of one of our customers. Our BIGGEST customer. 😳
I still didn’t know anything about the logistics industry, and this is where I have to pause to say a HUGE “Thank you!” to Port City — and Dana Morgan Bowen, in particular — for investing in, and training me. This story would have had an unhappy ending a long time ago without her expertise, thoroughness…and patience. 🤦♂️🤪
For almost 4 1/2 years, I have helped to handle that account, along with Dana, and then Terry Pritt (when Dana was promoted). They both deserve a medal, or something, for putting up with me. 🙄
A few weeks ago, I was approached with a simple question: “Are you interested in ‘moving up’?” 🤔😬 Today, Port City made it official: I’m the new warehouse manager at one of our nine locations. 😳😊 You can check us out at portcitylogistics.com.
Let me just say that this wasn’t part of some master plan. Not mine, at least. I do, however, have a few observations (🙄) that are, I think, worth noting:
- I think it’s healthy to be grateful for the simple things.
- It IS possible to start over at fifty-five.
- Anyone who will give you a chance to start over at fifty-five…and anyone who will give you a helping hand along the way…both are pretty special. 🤗🤗❤️❤️
- I believe Psalm 37:23. “The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord.” That includes imperfect, flawed, immature, 61-year-olds with Adult ADD. Hey…wanna go ride bikes??? 🤦♂️🤪
- I’ve said this before, but maybe you need to be reminded: If you feel like you’re trying to crawl out of a hole…KEEP CRAWLING, until you can get on your feet. If you’re crawling, at least you’re making progress. 👍
- Never, NEVER look down on small beginnings.
- Secular work, and “ministry”, are not incompatible. At all. Just sayin’.
- We are ALL works-in-progress…and I’m still working on what I want to be when I grow up…although pitching for the St.Louis Cardinals is looking more and more like a long shot. 😢🙄😜
As I begin in a new role, my prayer is the same one I prayed on that first day, over 5 1/2 years ago…and, your prayers are appreciated, as well.
I love you all. ❤️🙏
4 thoughts on “STARTING OVER…AT FIFTY-FIVE”
Doug you never disappoint me with your writing. This is especially interesting as my husband also had to start over in his 50’s. Small job that lead to a very satisfying one after a few years. Keep writing and good luck with the new position.
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Thanks, DeeDee! ❤️
Doug, you’re an inspiration. Truly. Thank you for everything.
Thanks, Dana! What a ride the last 4 1/2 years, huh?!❤️🤗🤯