A happy June 1st to all of you! Since it’s been a busy month and I am preparing for a trip out-of-state, I will let Jennifer, my schedule coordinator, share some devotional thoughts with you first:
We laugh at the fact that our family virtually has its own wildlife zoo. You never know what you might see from our porch on any given day. In the winter time we see coyotes and foxes quite often, deer of course - and all sorts of birds - humming birds, wood peckers, magpies. We have a couple of little resident chipmunks that are always running along our deck. The other day we watched a beautiful hawk glide from a tree over our yard and away. A few evenings ago I noticed a rock in the meadow in front of us that I had never seen before - then it started moving. I pulled out a pair of binoculars and still couldn't make out what kind of animal it was until it actually climbed through our fence and came into our front yard - I finally realized it was an enormous porcupine! A few weeks ago a couple of elk came wandering through our meadow. But our favorite visitors by far are the moose. We have a couple of them that like the flowers planted in front of our living room window and there have been days when we've come downstairs to find the moose literally looking into our living room. I have included a picture of one of them that we took this past winter. The other day we were driving through Rocky Mountain National Park when we saw a bunch of cars stopped with people pointing and taking pictures...sure enough there was a moose eating just off the road in the willows. One of our daughters looked at all the people and said: "Oh, keep going! It's just a boring old moose. We can see those every day in our yard if we want to." We laughed and told her she was pretty spoiled, that not very many people in this world get to see moose - and the fact that they come to our house is pretty rare - even for this area.
Every time I see wildlife out the window, I feel like God is giving me the opportunity (if I will take it) to slow down, sit back, take a deep breath and simply watch. Watch and enjoy the things He has made. I think He had fun making the moose you know? They are awkward looking creatures actually - and yet so graceful at the same time - and amazingly fast! It is easy to take the things He has given all of us for granted. From time to time I'll be in a hurry to get somewhere and one of the kids will point out the way the clouds cast a shadow over Byer's Peak or Sheep Mountain. When I stop or slow down to truly look, I am always amazed at the beauty God has created. And not just out here in Colorado! One of my favorite things to do in South Carolina was to lay down in our yard, especially in the fall, look up and watch the clouds roll across the sky, and listen to the squirrels jumping from tree limb to tree limb. God has said in His Word that creation points to Him - Romans 1:20 – “For since the creation of the world God's invisible qualities - his eternal power and divine nature - have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse." And Psalm 19:1-4 - "The heavens declare the glory of God, the skies proclaim the work of his hands. Day after day they pour forth speech, night after night they reveal knowledge.....they use no words....yet their voice goes out into all the earth..." And what is creation saying to you and me? That God is amazingly powerful (lightning storms up here are like nothing I've ever experienced before!), incredibly creative, a tender Father, who takes care of even the smallest of creatures and delicate flowers, that He loves to create things and for us to enjoy and look and learn about Him. Creation also tells me that it's groaning for His return when He will make everything right again. It points to our need for a Savior, and shows us our Father's love and care through all seasons of life - that every season has a purpose, and that He uses even storms and harsh weather to bring about beautiful things on our lives.
The summer is rarely a slow time for Dawn and me here at Jordan Ministries. In fact sometimes Dawn's travel schedule actually increases - especially in July and August. But I often hear her talk about stopping, slowing down, enjoying the simple things in life (a meal with her kids, a ball game, kayaking). May we not let this summer get away from us, but slow down, look out our windows, take a long look at our children and loved ones and remember all that God has done, is doing and will continue to do.
On a Personal Note – from Dawn
Not only was May a busy month ministry-wise, it was a very busy month for our family personally. Both Hannah and Ross had final exams, and finished well. Hannah completed her freshman year with a 4.0, and Ross his sophomore year with a 4.7. On the 14th, Hannah had all 4 of her wisdom teeth extracted, and did beautifully, apart from some swelling and discomfort. She went to Dutch Fork High School's prom with her boyfriend, a graduating senior, the weekend after her surgery, and thankfully, the swelling had gone down! Ross did a beautiful job performing in the Dutch Fork High School Chorus spring concert, as well as playing guitar with the FBC Student Ministries Worship Team all 4 Sundays of the month. On May 26th, Hannah performed a wonderful show at Jamestown Coffee House in Lexington SC, and we had a ball with the friends that came out to support her.
Our newest venture for the summer is that we purchased 3 kayaks, after my good friend Sharon Cone had turned me onto them, seeing how much fun her family has on theirs. This weekend we took them out on Lake Murray 3 times and had so much fun. We are heading to Garden City Beach the first week of June with my brother, his girlfriend & her 4-year-old son, and are taking them with us to try out in the ocean, or at least the guys are!
We were so excited when Hannah received her acceptance letter to Clemson University, where she will be a sophomore in their Performing Arts/Music major this fall. She is beyond excited, and I am so proud of her for working so hard to get there. Of course now this mama realizes that the letting go process will happen all over again, but I am so thankful for the plans the Lord has in store for her.
Ross received a big honor by being recommended to be on staff with Dutch Fork High School's Silver Screen Report, and will be attending the Carolina Journalism Institute in June along with the other staff members.
It's been a great year, and I am very much looking forward to getting away for a week with my loved ones, enjoying the ocean, the sun, the sand, and some down time relaxing, reflecting, and resting.
June 1st brings with it a mixture of joy and sadness as Jennifer celebrates, what she calls the 10th anniversary of her 29th birthday. It is also the day that my sweet sister Shari went to see Jesus face-to-face. There are still many days when I miss her and wish we could talk and laugh and cry together over all the things in life that come our way.
May also included a home-going for a very special lady to our family, Linda Applewhite, who has been my brother Robert's "adoptive" mother since our own mother's passing in 2003. Robert was an honorary pall bearer and I was privileged to sing at her celebration of life service last week. Though the circumstances were surrounding the loss of a precious friend, I so enjoyed getting to spend the day with my brother.
The months of May and June
The month of May was very travel-heavy for me, but oh what a privilege to meet so many wonderful new people and to share what God has done in my life. A highlight for me was to be in my home church on Mother's Day and sing a song I had written for my baby daughter over 18 years ago, having both of my children there with me. Then I was privileged to serve with my good friend Debbi Dunlap in Orange Park, FL as a part of her precious daughter Anna's church's 1st annual women's conference at Watermark Church. We had a blast! I was also privileged to speak throughout SC at Mt. Tabor Baptist in Easley, Midland Valley Church of the Nazarene in Clearwater, First Baptist Darlington and at a coffee house for the ladies of Mullins Presbyterian Church, Willow Ridge Church in Lexington, and Springdell Baptist Church's annual ladies spring event in Lancaster. After a whirlwind month of 8 ministry events, 1 end-of-the-year piano recital, Ross's high school chorus concert, & Hannah's show at Jamestown Coffee House, I'm really looking forward to June's slower pace. I will be in Dothan Alabama for the Glory 2012 Concert series, and will be singing/sharing what God has laid on my heart along with Squire Parsons and Aaron Wilburn on June 1st (an afternoon and evening concert). I am looking forward to a much needed family vacation as soon as I return. On June 10th I'll be at Calvary Baptist Church in Barnwell, SC for their morning service and then look forward to a little break before starting out my busy summer concert series at First Baptist Camden, SC on June 24th. I still have several summer love-offering concert dates available:
June 24th A.M.
July 15th A.M.
July 22nd A.M.
July 30th A.M.
August 12th P.M.
August 26th A.M. & P.M.
Of course Jennifer is also booking fall events (women’s retreats, conferences, homecoming concerts etc.), holiday events for 2012, as well as events in 2013. I would love to hear from you if you are interested in having me.
May you have a wonderful June – and take time to stop and smell the flowers! Literally! But most of all, take time to truly see and enjoy all the things God has created around you and how He shows you Himself. He has been so good to us!
This month I want to put the spotlight on my daughter Hannah's debut album "Shine" which features five of her originally-written songs. The stylings are pop/country and feature Hannah on lead vocals, background vocals, acoustic guitar, keyboard and piano. Hannah is a guest on some of my ministry events and performs her own concert. At $5.00, this is a very affordable album and a great graduation or birthday gift for the teenager in your family.
Glory 2012/Frank Jones Ministries - Bethel Baptist Church
Calvary Baptist Church
First Baptist Church
Follow Dawn on Facebook where we post regular updates and prayer requests.
Little Dale Tales
A few months ago my son Ian walked into the house after having been at school all day. I was laying on the couch as I had been pretty sick. He looked around for his younger sisters who were nowhere in sight and then said: "So....are you just letting the girls roam free?" Apparently he thought our house was a zoo - his sisters were the monkeys and I was the very delinquent zoo keeper!