As my precious daughter is about to become a bride, my heart is overflowing with gratefulness to a Faithful Father and His answered prayer. As Hannah Sharon Jordan and Clayton Parrish Little become husband and wife on May 15th, after being high school sweethearts and dating for the last 5 years, the #littlelovebirds are the answer to each other's prayers, as well as their parents for them. Oh how it seemed an eternity from when Clayton proposed to Hannah Christmas, 2014, to this wedding date. And now it is here. Proverbs 3:5-6 are my life verses and say, "Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will direct your paths." The faithfulness of God in the past assures us of His faithfulness in the present, and in the future we cannot see. But He has already gone ahead of us and is making a way. How grateful I am that both Hannah and Clayton made that most important decision in their own lives years ago, to trust in the Lord with all their hearts, and love Him. They will be moving to Charleston, SC after their wedding and honeymoon, where Clayton will begin Dental School at MUSC. Hannah is currently looking for a job, and looking forward to what the Lord has next for her. These are sweet, sweet days. Would you join us in praying for this precious couple, as they enter into this new life together? It is with tears of joy and gratitude that I thank you for praying for them, for me, for our families, and for your faithful friendship and prayer support over the years of raising this amazing, beautiful daughter of mine. I'd love to invite you to get to know the bride and groom a little more if you'd like, as you pray for them. You can view their wedding website here.
God is good,
Ministry at a Glance:
This past month was full of ladies' banquets, extravaganzas, luncheons and retreats; on top of several other exciting and wonderful ministry opportunities. April 1st I was at Bellview Baptist Church in Laurens, SC for their annual Ladies' Extravaganza, and what a sweet evening it was with some even sweeter ladies. So grateful to have been invited by pastor's wife, Crystal Powers.
On April 7th I traveled to Pawley's Island, SC to speak for Students in the Word's Benefit Luncheon at St. Paul's United Methodist Church. Students in the Word is a program that offers Bible courses to the students of Waccamaw Middle and High School. What a wonderful team of ladies I served alongside that day, reconnecting with a former Columbia College classmate, Tara Hawkinson, and former first lady of South Carolina, Iris Campbell, wife of the late Governor Carroll Campbell. I made it a point to at least go see the ocean, take a quick walk on the beach and put my bare feet in the sand before heading home that day. Good for the soul!
I traveled to Orangeburg, SC on April 12th to speak to the ladies of First Baptist Church for their Spring Forth Banquet. So grateful to have been invited to return at Sue Hartzog's invitation. April 15th I ministered at Woolsey Baptist Church in Fayetteville, GA for their Ladies' Night, and it was especially dear to me to be able to reconnect with Pastor Chuck and Lisa Chambers and be back in their wonderful church again. It was clearly one of those divine appointments in many ways, and I am most grateful.
The next day on April 16th I was up very early to drive to Spartanburg, SC to speak for Covenant Baptist Church's Women's Spring Luncheon, thanks to pastor's wife Rhonda Hensley's invitation. And finally finishing the ministry marathon on April 17th close to home at Saxe Gotha Presbyterian Church in Lexington, SC, I joined Saxe Gotha for their Sunday morningworship services at 8:30 and 11:00 joined by their wonderful women's choir for Women's Day, then went straight to their Women's Spring Luncheon at 12:30. It was a wonderful day ministering to all the members of the church and being back in my old stomping grounds.
The weekend of April 23rd-24th I traveled to Myrtle Beach, SC to speak/sing/lead worship for the ladies' retreat for Ebenezer Baptist Church from Monroe, NC, and loved reconnecting with pastor's wife Gail Rogers who had had me come to their previous church years earlier. It is always wonderful to be in ministry, but especially to get to enjoy a little time on the beach was the cherry on top. It was a small, intimate group of ladies, but we felt the presence of God in mighty ways.
Closing the month I was with the ladies of Abilene Baptist Church from Evans, GA April 29th-30th for their women's retreat. It was held at the Lodge at Lake Oconee in Georgia and it was a wonderful time together in the Lord as we focused on "Pressing On." When you are the mother of the bride and your only daughter is getting married in two weeks, you are a constant emotional mess. As I walked into my hotel room that afternoon, after what should've been a 2 hour drive from Columbia, SC to Eatonton, GA took 3 1/2 due to stand still traffic on I-20 due to road work, this is what greeted me. Tears flowed again, and I was overwhelmed at their thoughtfulness towards me during this very special time. What a blessed retreat we had together. I love them and my Savior that brought us together.
I left the retreat and drove straight to the senior recital of my precious music student Rachel Barber. She presented her senior voice recital at my former home church from my growing up years at Lexington Baptist Church. What a remarkable young woman she is, so gifted, loves Jesus, and is headed to University of Louisville on a music scholarship to study Music Therapy. I will surely miss her, but so privileged to have been a part of her journey.
Looking toward May, my ministry calendar isn't nearly as full; but my personal calendar is with the joyous celebration of my daughter's wedding. My final ministry opportunity before the wedding will be May 6th at Plum Branch Baptist Church in McCormick, SC for their ladies' Mother/Daughter Banquet. I would love for you to join me as I minister to the ladies of their church and community. Then May 7th I will be spending the morning watching my very-soon-to-be son-in-law Clayton Little graduate from Clemson University Magna Cum Laude, then that evening celebrating with one of my dearest friends Sharon Cone (yes, m-m-m-my Sharon!) and her family at their precious daughter Jordan's wedding. And finally, with happy, grateful tears in my eyes as I am writing this, after months and months of planning, preparations, fittings, deciding colors/flowers/dresses/food...the day will arrive for my daughter Hannah Jordan to become Mrs. Hannah Little. Sunday, May 15th I will be gaining Clayton as my precious son-in-law and I am so looking forward to celebrating these #littlelovebirds that will transition from being high school sweethearts to becoming husband and wife. I could not ask for a finer young man to love and marry my daughter. Then, a few days of recovery and we are back at the Lord's work. May 21st I am delighted to be the commencement speaker for Thomas Sumter Academy's Graduation Ceremony. Sunday, May 22nd I will be sharing in an evening concert at Westside Baptist Church in West Columbia, SC. The concert begins at 6:30 and I would love for you to join us. Sunday, May 29th I will be in Branchville, SC at Branchville United Methodist Church for an evening concert at 5:00 p.m. That will close out May, but be looking for information about all the summer concerts I have planned and please consider joining me if I will be ministering near you.
***FREE SUMMER CONCERT OPPORTUNITY***
(Free is ALWAYS in the budget!)
I am currently scheduling my summer love-offering concerts for the months of June and July, and I would love to come to your church! I only ask for a love offering and mileage. My summer concert is for the whole family and a great way to plan something special for the slower summer Sundays...a mix of hymns, worship songs, my original songs, me at the piano, some testimony, laughter, and even a song especially for the children to join me on stage. Summer is always a slower time for ministries like mine, as spring and fall are full of women's events/conferences/concerts, and December is full of Christmas events. So with a heart to be a blessing to churches that don't have a budget for a guest artist to come in, I look forward to sharing a concert simply to share the love of Jesus through music and His message of grace. Email me at email@example.com or call (803)772-7747and schedule your Sunday morning or evening before they all get booked.
During the slower months, churches don't have many outside guest speakers/singers/artists in due to so many of their congregation being away on family vacations, camps, etc. As a result, the finances in our ministry go way down. If you are considering making a one time gift to this ministry, or even prayerfully considering partnering with us, we would be so grateful. Dawn shares concerts on a love offering basis in the summer, and this is our only source of income for June, July and August.
Checks can be made to: Jordan Ministries
All gifts are tax-deductible, and Jordan Ministries, Inc. is a non-profit 501c(3) organization, and help us to continue to spread the Good News of Jesus. We thank you for your prayerful and financial support.
Funnies From the Road: Traveling to Pawley's Island, the access to I-95 was closed so I turned right, hoping my GPS would "recalculate." I came straight back to where I was. So I turned left trying a different route to get to my event. After those detours, I was running late; and I wouldn't stop to even have a bathroom break as I was trying to get there on time. And then, would you believe I got pulled over for speeding?! I explained to the officer I was late, why I was late, where I was going, and that though it was probably TMI, I didn't even stop for the restroom...at that, he thankfully just gave me a warning.
One of my hilarious music students, Joshua, came into his lesson telling me he had indigestion, but he did not think it was contagious. I said, "Indigestion, Joshua?! Do you think maybe you mean congestion?" Thankfully yes, as indigestion is certainly not contagious. I love these kids!
On the Home Front:
LOTS going on "on the home front" these days! May was full of family and friends as the first Saturday I was a proud niece as I accompanied my Aunt Sue McLeese to the Columbia Urban League Luncheon where she received the 2016 Tower Award, then that Sunday I celebrated my dear friend Sharon's daughter/bride-to-be Jordan Cone at a shower here in town. It's been so fun to be mothers of the brides together as our daughters' weddings are just a week apart!
My birthday was April 4th, and my sweet sister-in-law Caroline and my niece and nephew came over for a little visit, with gifts and lots of laughter. My mother-in-law dropped by, as did my Aunt Sue, and I felt so loved and blessed by the many calls, gifts and cards I received. Even my music students joined in celebrating with me as I taught on my birthday. The Unumb family even brought a cake, with candles, singing, the whole 9 yards!
The next weekend I was back in Clemson to hear Clayton's final Tigerroar concert, go to church with both he and Hannah at Newspring Church Anderson, get a sushi lunch, then take the bride-to-be shopping for her honeymoon. Then the two of us enjoyed dinner out together, and I realized that could very well be the last time I may have dinner with just my girl before she becomes a wife. Of course Cookie had to come along and spend some time with Blue. That Monday Hannah had her Bridal portrait sitting and I have to say I cried the entire time, simply because this mama's heart is overflowing with gratitude and she was absolutely breathtakingly beautiful! As my friend Sharon said, "She is a Barbie doll!"
It was a rare treat to actually attend a concert in the midst of giving so many, and my friends Tony & Joyce Wagster and I, as well as my aunt, went to see none other than my all-time favorite Christian artist, the queen of Gospel herself, Sandi Patty!
My Zumba teacher is expecting her first child, and due to some complications, her doctor has ordered she no longer teach until after the baby is born, due in July. Won't you pray for her? So, I had to go looking elsewhere for a new Zumba place in the meantime, and I have to say I learned something new about my Administrative Assistant Allison as I tried her gym's class. The girl has moves! We laughed and sweated so much together, I can't wait til next time! She and her 2 girls and I had a "staff meeting" again, this time at the mall food court!
On May 19 at 6:00 PM 20 of my 23 voice/piano students will present our annual/end-of-the-year recital at the Heritage at Lowman Home in Chapin, SC. This is one of the highlights of my year as I watch these amazing young musicians share their God-given talents with their family, friends, and the residents there.
As I am writing this, it is snowing again in Denver, and Ross and Brianna are loving it! Snow in April to this SC woman is unimaginable! May will hold so many wonderful celebrations, and I am so grateful for your prayers as this MOB watches her daughter walk down the aisle and into her new role as a wife to her beloved. God is good.
Special Mother's Day Offer: "This Far"
Dawn's 2011 Compilation CD includes 17 songs, and for this Mother's Day, won't you purchase a copy for your own mom? It includes the 4 songs written about her journey as a mother entitled "Watching My Heart" as a now empty-nester, the song she wrote about her own mother and mother-in-law "A Mother's Prayer," "A Love That Leads to You" written for Hannah, and later re-written for Ross, and the song written for her own daughter "Live More." Buy 1, get a complimentary testimony CD when shipped.
Dawn's Blog Amazing Grace Notes
My new blog is entitled "Amazing Grace Notes," and I would love to invite you to join me at http://dawnsmithjordan.blogspot.com/
for regular updates.
As you are prayerfully considering becoming a monthly partner, or sending a one time gift to Jordan Ministries remember all gifts are tax-deductible and greatly appreciated, Jordan Ministries is a 501c3 non-profit organization. Make your donation to Jordan Ministries, and mail them to P.O. Box 2846, Irmo, SC 29063. Thank you for partnering with us through your financial gifts and prayers.
Follow me on my DAWN SMITH JORDAN Musician/Band Facebook page to be eligible for the monthly prize give-away trivia contest!
Follow Dawn on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram where we post regular updates and prayer requests.
A Note from Allison
Last weekend Randy and I went camping with some friends, and we brought Abby (4) with us. She was very excited about our trip and for weeks leading up to it she had been planning what she was bringing to read, color, sleep on, and eat (smores of course)! We arrived at the camp site Friday afternoon, in the pouring rain, I mean POURING!!! We got out of the car and were huddled up under a canopy we managed to set up during a slight drizzle break in the storm. As we sat there, in the middle of the canopy trying to stay semi-dry Abby looks up and says "This is not camping!" Sorry sweetheart, it doesn't get more "camping" than that. HAHA. The rain finally stopped and we were able to set up the tent. As soon as we got dinner going and a fire started Abby informed us it was smores time! Needless to say we had smores both nights, and man were they good. Saturday we just took the day to be lazy and just relax, it was nice to not feel like I should be doing 15 things all day, and just lay in the hammock and enjoy my family. And while I can rough it when I have to, I decided there are few situations when I think I will "have to." Although it was nice that Randy did most of the cooking while we camped. What is it about camping and grilling and makes the men do the cooking? I like it!