I hope you are staying cool wherever you are. Last week as I was running errands one afternoon, the thermostat on my car said it was 111 degrees outside! That is HOT, even for famously hot Columbia, SC.
Habakkuk 3:17-18 says, "Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food...yet I will rejoice in the Lord. I will be joyful in God my Savior."That YET is what grabs my attention every time I read those verses. It could read like this for our family vacation the first week of June...though our condo that was advertised to sleep 8 slept 6 (and we had 7 people), though the first 3 of 5 days of our vacation in Garden City Beach, SC it rained and was cold (69 degrees the 3rd day), though our washing machine overflowed the next-to-the-last evening we were there, requiring all rugs be removed, a shop vac being run by maintenance at 11:00 pm, and a huge fan being put under the sopping wet carpet in Hannah & Ross's and my bedroom that we shared...YET. Yet what? What would you have done? Yes, we were cramped, yes we were so hoping the sun would come out, and yes, the washing machine was the final straw for us all. YET, I continued to hear the song from Annie play over and over in my head..."The sun'll come out tomorrow, bet your bottom dollar that tomorrow, there'll be sun!" I am laughing even as I write about it, because truly, it was not what we had hoped for or expected, especially since it was the first full week of vacation that our family had been able to take in years... YET, that is the way life is so much of the time. We can no more forecast the weather before we book a vacation months in advance anymore than we can plan what will actually happen next week, while we make our plans. YET, we can always choose to be joyful, afterall choosing joy is a daily decision. We made the best of it, as best we could. If nothing else, we definitely made memories!
But in all seriousness, there are going to be those times in all of our lives that we find ourselves disappointed in the circumstances, discouraged that things didn't turn out the way we had hoped or planned, and we long for better. The book I am currently reading, Heaven by Randy Alcorn reminds me that there IS better, and in the meantime, we have to choose to live in this world with an eternal perspective, knowing "This ain't all there is." On some days, we can simply rejoice in that fact, that this is temporary, but what is to come is eternal, and it is going to so surpass anything difficult we have had to face or endure in this life.
We ended up having two beautiful, sunny, warm days to end our vacation, some delicious seafood, a great time together enjoying our kayaks, walking on the beach and listening to live music on the pier at night, riding the traditional roller coaster at Family Kingdom, eating more Painter's ice cream than any of us needed, and we made the most of it. "Though"...you fill in the blank in your own life today...and then finish it with, "YET I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Savior."
On a Personal Note:
This month we will be spending the 4th of July going up to my brother's home in NC to do our annual summer tradition of tubing down the river with him, and celebrating our freedom as Americans. Then next week, Hannah, her Dad and I will be going to Clemson's orientation as we begin the process of this new chapter in her life. Hannah, Ross and I are also looking forward to attending the Miss South Carolina pageant next week, a highlight for us each summer. Ross will turn 16 on July 12th, meaning he will be getting his extended driver's license, and Hannah will turn 19 on the 19th. My kids are growing up, friends! They are looking forward to spending their annual vacation
week with the entire Jordan clan at Folly Beach, SC. July will be another month full of family, fun, and summer.
My sister Shari has also been on my mind as June 1st was the anniversary of her home-going and June 25th would have been her 45th birthday. I wonder often what life would be like if I had my sister with me to share the ups and downs and family life etc... YET I will rejoice in the Lord!
The months of June and July
I so enjoyed a somewhat slower pace than normal during the month of June and am glad I was able to spend some more extended time with my family. On June 1st I was in Dothan, Alabama for the Glory 2012 Concert series with Frank Jones Ministries and got to share in concert along side Squire Parsons, Sam Parsons, and Aaron Wilburn. I came home and immediately left for our family vacation with my children, my brother Robert, his friend Elizabeth and her little boy. It was so nice to get to enjoy the beach the last couple of days (it rained at first). On June 10th I gave a concert at Calvary Baptist Church in Barnwell, SC for their morning service. On June 16th I had the privilege of sharing with the Miss South Carolina Pageant contestants at our Sesquicentennial Park and then gave a concert at First Baptist Camden, SC on June 24th. July will be a whirlwind month. I participated in my church's 25th anniversary of our annual Celebration of Liberty this past Sunday and will be heading to Lake Wateree Baptist in Ridgeway this coming Sunday evening (July 8th), then to Fellowship Baptist in Lexington (July 15th), Siloam Baptist in Easley (July 22nd), 1st Church of God in Sumter and 2nd Baptist Church in Bennettsville (July 29th) and then Lexington Baptist Church (July 30th) - so even though there are a lot of concerts in the month of July, I will get to stay closer to home for now.
The Celebration of Liberty that we just had at our church will air on television and incase you are interested in seeing it - here at the dates and times:
July 4, 7pm - SCETV - Channel 35 (statewide)
July 4, 8pm - ETV-HD South Carolina Channel (statewide) July 4, 8pm - WGGS - Channel 16 (Greenville)
July 5, 8am - WGGS - Channel 16 (Greenville)
July 7, 4pm - WTAT - Fox 24 (Charleston)
July 7, 7pm - WMBF News (Myrtle Beach)
July 8, 6am - CW Augusta (Augusta, GA)
July 8, 12pm - CW Savannah (Savannah, GA)
July 8, 1pm - WMMP - My TV (Charleston)
Of course Jennifer is 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.
Take heart today in whatever issues may be weighing on you - our heavenly Father is there with you and He will give you the grace to say "YET!" and then give you the grace to see His love and care and presence in all circumstances and rejoice in the midst of them!
Since we would have celebrated Shari's 45th birthday last month I thought we would put the spotlight on my Mom's book "The Rose of Shari." I miss them both so very much and am thankful that I can say with confidence that they are both together in the presence of Jesus and that I will get to see them again.
Lake Wateree Baptist Church
Fellowship Baptist Church
Siloam Baptist Church
1st Church of God
2nd Baptist Church
Lexington Baptist Church
Follow Dawn on Facebook where we post regular updates and prayer requests.
Little Dale Tales
This past week my 2nd child, Julie-Joy, wrote an email that she sent to all of her extended family (aunts and uncles, grand parents, cousins etc.) - my sister-in-law forwarded it to me as she realized that I had not been copied on it and thought I ought to know. Apparently Julie-Joy was sharing with the family that she had gotten sick after Vacation Bibleschool last week and that she had been screaming at the top of her lungs to earn points for her team. She concluded the email with a brief note saying "But don't worry, I did not get historical." You can imagine the emails that have been going around between the grown-ups since then, with comments about how historically we laughed upon reading her sweet note! :) There's nothing like a good belly-laugh to brighten your day - so may you too have some moments for a good historical laugh! :)