Wednesday, December 13, 2017

Take Time.....

This time of year can get pretty crazy and tough for many of us. Last week I reminded us to “put down the glass”. This week I want to encourage us to “slow down our pace”. Let’s be honest, I mean really honest. We are not quite 2 weeks away from Christmas day. Would it be fair to say that even being this close, most of your thoughts are towards deadlines before the Christmas break, what to do with kids while they are off from school, the Christmas gifts that still need to be bought, the Christmas programs you are getting ready for and/or attending, etc., etc., etc. Some of you haven’t even gotten your tree up yet. Come on! (ha, ha, ha, ha)  

This afternoon as I was researching some questions I had about Christmas, I came across a link regarding “The First Christmas Day” (Eve-Morning). When I clicked on the link I was taken aback by the absolute simplicity of the story of Jesus’ birth. There were no bells and whistles. It was simply, in simplest illustration, the story of the birth of the Christ child. It might as well have been told on a “felt board”. And it was nice, and easy, and moving. There was nothing hurried about it. And my heart was reminded again of how crazy the world has made the season. How we can get caught up in the pace of it and forget the simple story of Christ and the gift of Salvation that Christmas represents.
Slow your pace for just a minute and be reminded….

Have a great week, slow your pace, and remember why we celebrate.

Love you all,


p.s.  Some of you might enjoy this link just for the fun of it.

Tuesday, December 5, 2017

“Put the Glass down” ……..

I suspect I posted this glass illustration several years ago when I found it on the internet, but it seemed appropriate in this season and time to post it again as a reminder.
"A psychologist walked around a room while teaching stress management to an audience. As she raised a glass of water, everyone expected they'd be asked the "half empty or half full" question. Instead, with a smile on her face, she inquired: "How heavy is this glass of water?" Answers called out ranged from 8 oz. to 20 oz.
She replied, "The absolute weight doesn't matter. It depends on how long I hold it. If I hold it for a minute, it's not a problem. If I hold it for an hour, I'll have an ache in my arm. If I hold it for a day, my arm will feel numb and paralyzed. In each case, the weight of the glass doesn't change, but the longer I hold it, the heavier it becomes." She continued, "The stresses and worries in life are like that glass of water. Think about them for a while and nothing happens. Think about them a bit longer and they begin to hurt. And if you think about them all day long, you will feel paralyzed – incapable of doing anything."

It’s important to remember to let go of your stresses. As early in the evening as you can, put all your burdens down. Don't carry them through the evening and into the night. “Put the glass down!"
Jesus said it to us this way…. 

Matthew 11:28-30 (ESV)
Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.   Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”

I love those verses.  I hear Him saying to me in my heart when I read them, “Vickie, come to me. Why are you carrying these thoughts, feelings and emotions by yourself? It’s too much. You were not meant to carry them alone. Let me have them, trust me, it will give you a break. It will allow you to get a God perspective on all of them. I am not going to berate you for not coming to me sooner or make you to feel inadequate or worthless. Let me have them, trust me, it will give you your joy back when you get a God perspective on things. It will lighten your step.”

This Christmas as finances, family, illnesses, loss of a loved one, ministry, work, etc., start to close in on you “put the glass down". After all, we have a Savior that came into this world so that we could “Come to Him”.

Love you all,


Tuesday, November 21, 2017

Gratitude is an offering precious in the sight of God,
and it is one the poorest of us can make
and be not poorer but richer for having made it.   
A.W. Tozer

It is with much Gratitude and Thanksgiving that the Board, Staff, and Advisors of Pure Joy International wish you and yours a wonderful time in the LORD during this Thanksgiving Holiday. 

Pure Joy International

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Costa Rica Follow-up

 There will be no words to adequately share with you what God accomplished in Costa Rica on our trip there. I shared with the team and I will share with all of you that were a part of the Costa Rica team through prayer, giving, gifting and going…. I suspect the fruit of that trip will not be seen by most of us in this lifetime. But, His spirit in me affirms it will be a very, very productive crop. His presence was amazing.

Here are some snippets of some of the feedback from the missionary women…

  • I am overwhelmed by the thoughtfulness and how these complete strangers have prayed, invested, and loved on me. It demonstrates God’s love for me in a tangible way. And in turn, it gives me the desire to show His love to others in a tangible way.
  • The welcoming committee was the absolute crowning moment of the retreat for me. Someone mentioned my name, “Helen,” and said, you were praying for me. My trepidation evaporated, my insecurities were enveloped in the welcoming hug. I became an immediate “BELONGER.” That was one of the many gifts I trundled home in the red bag. The sense of being a part of, and not a stranger to, the body of Christ, to all those women – a foretaste of heaven. When I get there, with all my rusty bits, and questions and things still hidden, the booming welcome from my Heavenly Father will cancel it all out, and I will be a family member for all eternity. I can’t wait.
  • I had never heard of Pure Joy International before 2 of my teammates and I attended a free of charge 4 day conference for women missionaries last week. It was incredible. There was solid Biblical teaching from some of the most loving, Christ-centered women I have ever met, we found out people from churches associated with Pure joy had been assigned to pray for us the past 5 months, they sent us cards letting us know they had been praying for us and ministries and churches also associated with Pure Joy sent us gifts. I have never seen the body of Christ come together in so many different ways and from different places all with the goal of supporting missions and missionaries. If you know missionaries, please pass on the word that a Pure Joy conference is worth attending. I have no association other than having attended a conference that was an absolute blessing for my teammates and I, but would like to say if you or your church would like to support the work Pure Joy International is doing supporting women missionaries please visit their website.
  • It was a delight and a gift for me to attend this conference at this time. Even now, I'm processing the "gold nuggets" from the team and attendees!

No matter how much we share with you about the impact your partnership with Pure Joy International means there is no way for us to express it that gives it justice.

As I close out today, I want to give you the link to the partner video that several of you were a part of on this trip. When we play this for the missionary women you can see tears running down some of their faces because they can’t believe someone is doing this for someone they don’t even know. I pray those of you that pray, give and gift realize that what you do is a picture of how Jesus gave His life, everything for us before we ever knew Him. You gave without them knowing you.


Saturday, October 28, 2017

Costa Rica Team is heading home...

See you Sunday, family and friends!

Wonderful Friday conference day...

God continued to show His wondrous works among the group on Friday with a great day full of fellowship, worship, gifts and teaching from His Word. Please continue to pray as they finish strong this morning.
Team prayer
Group worship

Sweet fellowship
 Favorites bags always bring a lot of smiles!

 Counting it all Pure Joy,

Friday, October 27, 2017

Thursday and the conference continues...

Today was full day for the team and the missionaries. Four messages from God's word were presented; three testimonies of His faithfulness were proclaimed; great meals, sweet fellowship, and precious gifts were shared. What a wonderful God we serve!

Counting it all Pure Joy,