Monday, December 28, 2009

Pass the Bread Please...

Today we reach my favorite part of the Lord’s Prayer probably because I am a woman and as we know women need security. So, let’s see where we are…

Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name.
Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.
Give us this day our daily bread.

“Give us this day our daily bread.” I take this verse very literally in many ways but to summarize it for you I take this to mean whatever I need for “today” physically, mentally, emotionally, and spiritually. I truly believe that when I pray those words to Our Father that I will lack nothing for this day. And that it is just for this day that I have asked and believed for because tomorrow isn’t here. I am always reminded of the children of Israel when they had been led out of Egypt and were grumbling about lack of food. God gave them manna from heaven. He gave it to them for that day and that day alone. He told them gather what you need for today only. But because of mistrust, some gathered for the next day as well. It turned into rotten worms. And on the day before the Sabbath He told them to take enough for today and tomorrow’s Sabbath. Still some did not trust His word! Whether we understand it or not or whether it looks like what we want it to look like in the physical realm, we must understand this truth….He will give us our daily bread. He is not holding out on us. He will give us just what we need for this day - nothing less or more - but what is sufficient. Trust Him with this truth. Do you know what peace you can walk in if you truly trust Him with this truth? He will provide your daily bread. But we get so busy looking at how we think that is supposed to look, we miss it! Just know that He is not holding out on you! Just know that He is our provision. Don’t limit Him by your eyesight. And don’t be unthankful for how He gives the daily bread each day. And then be wise with the bread. Daily He provides what we need if we ask. Are you asking? Are you believing? Are you thanking Him at the end of the day whether it went the way you thought it should or not? The enemy wants us to believe our God is unable to provide! That is a lie. Ask the Lord, “Give us this day our daily bread.” And don’t forget this prayer says “Give us this day our daily bread.” We are to be praying for each other’s daily needs!

Hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas. Please consider committing your life anew to Him today. He loves you so much and wants to make the difference in your life!


Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Is everything packed?

These are some famous last words said before we are leaving for a trip and or returning home from a trip. And, unfortunately, most of the time, we leave something behind on both ends. The reason I shared this opening with you is because it is about preparation and that is just what the next portion of the Lord’s Prayer is about to me. It says, “on earth as it is in heaven”. Again, “on earth as it is in heaven”. To get this in perspective, let’s look at the Lord’s Prayer up to this point:

“Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name.

Your kingdom come, your will be done, on earth as it is in heaven.

Reread the first part of the sentence. Your kingdom come, your will be done….

His kingdom means His reign in everything, His joy, peace, and righteousness. His will means that we, His children, would obey His word and be holy. In heaven He reigns and His will is done. This earth is a place of preparation to begin to yield to His reign and to desire to walk according to His will! I hope each of you desire for His reign and will to be active in your lives daily. That is my prayer for you!!

It is just a few days away from the Celebration of the Birth of our Glorious King. While this time of year is filled with many joys for so many, I also realize, as a counselor, it is filled with sorrows and sadness for others. If I could encourage you in any way this season, whether you are on the mountaintop or in the valley, it would be to take on the heart of the wise men in Matthew 2:1-2 and especially verse 2where it says, “for we saw His star when it rose and have come to worship Him.” Whether on the mountaintop or as my Pastor friend says "it feels like all the stars have fallen from your sky"……our “Star” has risen and ascended to the heavenlies and is worthy of our Praise!”

Wishing you a Merry Christmas and a Blessed New Year 2010!!!!


Monday, December 14, 2009

Finding Nemo

I’m sure most of us, by this time, if we have any child in us whatsoever, have seen the movie Finding Nemo. As I continue to write out some thoughts on the Lord’s Prayer, a scene came to my mind as I thought of our words for today….”Your (His) Will Be Done”.

Remember the scene where Nemo’s dad is belched out of the mouth of the Pelican on the dock. A swarm of seagulls sees him laying there and starts flying toward him saying, Mine, Mine, Mine, Mine, Mine! It is hard for us to pray from our hearts “Your (His) Will Be Done” because we want “our will” to be done, mine, mine, mine. I know so many believers that just flat out tell me that they are not ready to pray for God’s will in every area of their life, yet. Hmmmmm. What has to happen for us to make a decision to pray “His Will Be Done” when He is the Alpha – Omega. He sees all, knows all, has all power, and is everywhere all the time. He loves us and has our best interest at heart all the time!! No matter what is going on in the physical. So when you get to this part of the prayer, are you really praying for “His Will to be Done” or are you deep inside going…mine, mine, mine?

I had a great opportunity to speak to a group of precious women in a church in Jonesboro, AR called, In His Steps yesterday. Sweet time of message and fellowship!

Please remember our Missionaries overseas as they deal with being away from some of their family members during this Holiday Season.


Wednesday, December 9, 2009

His Place...

This week we look at the words of the Lord’s Prayer,” Your Kingdom Come”. These are three powerful words!! As I meditate on each word, I think of the word “your” as representing ownership, possession, He holds the deed/title to it. Then the word “kingdom” is so awesome. Not only does he own it, He reigns over His “kingdom”. The Webster dictionary uses several ways to define the word “kingdom” but I love this the most…an area or sphere in which one holds a preeminent position. Then the word “come” which is defined by Webster as; to arrive at a particular place, end, result or conclusion.

Wow! Do you hear what He is telling His disciples….Pray boys that MY Kingdom Will Come to you…that you will get in on what I have for you! When is the last time you prayed for His kingdom to come!

So, I just want to say to my brothers and sisters all over this world, I prayed for you today, that Our Father who is above all things, whose Name can be trusted, will continue the good work He has begun in each of us to bring us into the fullness of His kingdom!

We at Pure Joy are locking down some dates for next year. Please pray about how God would have you, our precious readers, to be involved: prayer, giving, or going, or all of these.


Monday, November 30, 2009

What's in a Name?

I’m going to list several names for you and then I want you to think about everything you know about that person; Tiger Woods, Hannah Montana, Elvis Presley, Madonna, and Billy Graham. I can promise you that for each person listed above, you know what they have done or do and you have an opinion about their character.

As we continue our breakdown of the Lord’s Prayer, we come to “Hallowed be thy Name”.

The word “Hallow” means to pronounce as Holy. In others words the “Names” of God are Holy because He is Holy. Then the “Names” themselves also tell of His attributes/character. I am going to give you some Names of God and you thing about what attributes/character traits come to mind. He is Almighty, Majestic, Omnipotent, Omniscient, Omnipresent, Creator, Great Physician, etc.

So, now, let’s take our prayer to this point and see what it might look like as we are led by the Spirit to pray it out...

Our Father, Father to my brothers and sisters all around the world look upon us this day from the place of (in) Heaven above. Lord you know each one of us by name. The God who named the stars of heaven and would know if even one is missing, “Hallowed be thy Name”. Name above all names, Holy, Majestic, All knowing, All powerful, Every where present, we call on your name today. I call on you to accomplish your will through our lives as your children. LORD, shape us more each day into your character. Meet us where we are and take us to where we should go.

Next week we will look at “Thy kingdom come”. I pray that you are allowing the Spirit of God to direct you in your prayer as you pray through this Lord’s Prayer each week. If you allow the Spirit to move, you will not have to be concerned about being repetitious.

Yesterday, I had the sweet opportunity to address the church of FBC Paris, AR on the topic of missions. It was a sweet time with a sweet group of believers. I remind us all today that He commands us all to “Go”. Whether He is asking you to go across the street, across the state, to another state or the ends of the earth is between you and Him,but if we are to be obedient to the great commission we all must “go”.

Hope everyone had a great Turkey Day full of Thanksgiving! I would love to hear some laughable moments from some of you regarding the day. As we know, when families come together it is good for a laugh, or a cry!


Tuesday, November 24, 2009

P.S. The rest of the story...

So, at the Global Impact Conference at Central Baptist Church in Jonesboro, all the missionaries set their booths up and display pictures, brochures, information, etc. to let the church family know about their ministry. Usually two different missions organizations share a long rectangular table. On Sunday after church we were supposed to be standing out in front of our booths. As I am standing there a man comes up to me and introduces himself. Then he says I want to donate a heifer to your ministry. This ministry and I pointed to the Pure Joy International heading? Yes, he said. A heifer, I said? Yes, a heifer, he replied, you know a cow?

I said,oh yeah, I know what a heifer is. Well, he said, I want to donate it to your ministry. As I’m standing there thinking what will I do with a cow, Wendy walks up. I said, oh, let me introduce you to our Public Relations (PR) person for our ministry. Wendy I said, this man wants to donate a cow to us. A cow, she asked? Yes, a cow I said. Wendy looks at the gentleman and says, is it processed? No, it is a live cow, he replies. Hmmmm - you can see both Wendy and my brains trying to figure out how we can receive this gift for our ministry and turn it into funds. Then Wendy says so it’s not processed? The man says no, but I’ll go ahead and pay to have it processed for you. Great I’m thinking. Now we have the cow cut up in all these packages -- now what do we do with it. Then I said, I guess we can have a raffle and sell chances on the meat. The man looks at us and says yeah if you want to. You can probably get about $600 for it even though he is looking at us both like we are really, really, bleached blonde. Then the light bulb goes off in my head and I say, are you sure you're not wanting to give this to The Kings Ranch (the missions group next to us). Yeah he said isn’t that you? No, we are with Pure Joy International. He said I thought all this was the same. No sir I said. Yes I want to donate a heifer to The Kings Ranch. Since the people from that table weren’t there at the time I got his name and promised to let them know.

I can’t even tell you how hard we all laughed about that interaction. Finally he could admit he thought we were a little crazy! I told him later that I thought I should at least get a steak dinner out of this deal some day! Who says missions isn’t fun!!!


Monday, November 23, 2009

Teach us to pray...

Last week we looked at the words “Our Father”. I hope that gave you some things to think about. Today I want us to look at the words, “in heaven”. Those words encourage me. They tell me He is above all things! He is Jehovah who sees! Don’t ever let the enemy deceive you into believing that “Our Father in heaven” doesn’t see exactly what the enemy is up to, and let us not be deceived into believing that He doesn’t see what we are up too as well. He is “in heaven” above all things. So, my precious ones remember this--when it is over your head……it is under His feet! Amen!

Spent the last five days in Jonesboro, AR at Central Baptist Church as they hosted their yearly Global Impact Conference. They bring in Missionaries from around the world for a conference full of activities. I had the great opportunity to speak with several Life Groups and attend several luncheons with the opportunity to share about Pure Joy International. Central Baptist is one of three sponsoring churches that commit to partner with us each year. The other churches are FBC Morrilton, AR, and Shiloh Bible Church Elko, Nevada. We are so thankful for the commitment of these churches.

I'm believing God for many more sponsoring churches in the future! Yes, in spite of the economy, I’ve decided to Trust in Him!

I want you to know that I am soooooooooo thankful for all of you who pray for, give to, and go with Pure Joy International. I pray that this Thanksgiving, God will bless your day with your family and friends.

Please remember all of our missionaries around the world who will not sit down to a meal with their families from the U.S. because of their faithfulness to serve Him overseas. Also, make room at your table for someone who doesn’t have a table to sit down at.


P.S. I have a funny about the weekend in Jonesboro. I will have to find time tomorrow to write about it because my next client is here. So, check back tomorrow some time. It is a good laugh!!!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Our Father...

Last week I ask you to meditate on the Lord’s Prayer that He gave to the disciples in Matthew 6:9-15. I hope you spent some time on that. This week I want you to think about the first couple of words “Our Father”. I love that word “Our”. Notice Jesus didn’t instruct them to start out with “My” Father. Hmmmmm Think He wanted them and us to realize that we are not an Only Child! I know that comes as a shock to some so I will give you a second of pause here………………ok, breeeeeathe.

Our “Father”….John 1:12 assures us of our identity.

12But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, 13who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.

He chose to Father us! It was His will! Wow! Who’s your Daddy? God is!

Today, Father, I want to lift up my brothers and sisters all over this world. Father I do not know the names or faces of most of them but I do know that if you are their Father they are my brothers and sisters. So, I pray for all of my brothers and sisters near and far and everywhere in between. Lord, today give each of them what they need to experience the grace to trust you more! Father, today reveal yourself to each one of them no matter their circumstances and may they KNOW your love today. Father I pray at night when we look to the heavenlies and the sky is filled with limitless stars that we would remember each other around the world! We are your stars that you have given life to that we may light the world and Glorify your Name!


Monday, November 9, 2009

Take a Challenge...

This week read the Lord’s Prayer in Matthew 6:9-13. Don’t use commentaries to break it down. Just take one word at a time, one verse at a time, and chew on it, meditate on it, write down what He shows you about it. Write down what you learn about yourself from it. Look at what you see about others in it. And what about the enemy? I love this prayer because it addresses the four people groups that the entire Scriptures are all about: God, others, self, and the enemy!

Have an awesome week as you take this Challenge!


Monday, November 2, 2009

Hello from out West

I am in Nevada this week visiting friends. It is always such a sweet time to be back in the church out here and see old and new faces. Shiloh Bible Church is one of our churches that prays for Pure Joy, gives monthly to Pure Joy and goes (they have women who have gone from their church on at least one trip a year the past two years). It is wonderful to be able to worship with fellow sisters and brothers in Christ who share a heart for our Savior!

Yesterday, during the church services, Bro. David preached out of Ephesians. During his sermon one of the things he alluded to was how we treat God. He shared with me later that we spend a lot of time on how we are to treat each other in churches but we don't spend as much on our relationship with God. As I have pondered his words I really started thinking about how we do teach a lot on repentance, confession of sin, salvation, baptism, ministry, spiritual gifts, etc. But, how much teaching do we really receive about that intimacy with our Heavenly Father. When that intimacy is right with God we don't have to wonder how to treat each other, we just have to be obedient to His overflow in our hearts. That obedience will teach us to learn to die to self and put others first. By the way how is your relationship with God? Intimate?

Our Pure Joy newsletter will be coming out soon. If you would like a copy mailed to you then let us know by contacting and giving her your name and mailing address. Also, if you have a change of address please contact her to update your information.

Have a wonderful week. And keep our missionary women and their families in your prayers daily. He Knows Their Name!


Monday, October 26, 2009

Must Be Born Again...

I love the first part of John Chapter 3. It is such a visual picture to me of the principle of Salvation and Security in Christ.

John 3:1-7

You Must Be Born Again

1 Now there was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews. 2 This man came to Jesus by night and said to him, “Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher come from God, for no one can do these signs that you do unless God is with him.” 3 Jesus answered him, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born again he cannot see the kingdom of God.” 4 Nicodemus said to him, “How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter a second time into his mother’s womb and be born?” 5 Jesus answered, “Truly, truly, I say to you, unless one is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. 6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit. 7Do not marvel that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.’

There it is! Those words you MUST be born of Water and Spirit to enter the kingdom of God. This past week Patty, our Technical Support and Financial person for Pure Joy International, and her husband Kenny (Pure Joy Board member) became Grandparents for the first time with a baby girl, healthy and precious as she can be. Then yesterday another friend had their first baby who is a little girl as precious as she can be too. Last night as I held that newborn, all I could think of was this verse. You must be born of water and the Spirit. Well, the water part is done. Both of these girls have been born in the physical because Mom’s water broke before the baby arrived. Now the quest is to pray for their Spiritual birth! It is never too early to begin praying for your children, grandchildren, nieces, and nephews to be born again!

Here is the Security part. A man cannot be unborn physically. You cannot change the fact of who your physical birth parents are and be born physically again any more than you can change the truth below that says we are born spiritually not by the will of the flesh, nor of man, but of God!

John 1:12-13

12 But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, 13 who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.

Who’s Your Daddy? God is!!!!!!


Monday, October 19, 2009

Putting on the Armor of God...

Last night, our Youth Pastor taught on the ‘Armor of God’. It reminded me of the many times I have had the opportunity to teach on that subject. My opening for that teaching is usually a question. How many of you left your home this morning naked and headed off to school, work, play, church, etc? It always draws a good laugh from the crowd. I’m sure that's because we all know what a scary sight that would be. And if you are a proponent of nudist colonies, I just want to say I’m confident Adam and Eve ruined that for you. Anyway, I start with that because of how ridiculous it would be for us to start the day without covering ourself. But, yet most ‘Believers’ walk out of their houses daily ‘spiritually naked’ and don’t think a thing about it. The Pastor also said something else that we lose sight of, “Spiritual victory is not passive; it involves daily discipline and obedience.” That’s right --discipline. One of the biggest weaknesses of the body of Christ today is self-discipline. And if you are practicing the disciplines as a believer-- being in the Word, prayer, obedience, love, etc.-- God's Word says ‘put on’ the armor. It requires action daily! Discipline puts it on! So hop over to Ephesians 6:10 and start reading and ask yourself….Is there a breeze in here? Hmmmm


Monday, October 12, 2009

Fall is upon us...

Just returned yesterday from a road trip to Richmond, Virginia to see my god-son get married. The trees were just beginning to turn as we drove through Tennessee and parts of Virginia on Thursday, but even more colorful in just a four day period as we drove home yesterday.

There is something about the fall that just brings out the frisky playfulness in all of us. My grandpa used that word all the time, frisky. Where he was concerned it always meant fun and laughter. There is something about the fall that makes us a little more rowdy than normal. If you don’t have a clue what I’m talking about then you live in a place where you never see the temperature drop below 65 or 70 degrees. For the rest of us, we get frisky. Right?

The wedding was held at the Lewis Ginter Botanical Gardens in the Rose Garden and it was beautiful. If you are ever in the Richmond area, I highly recommend the visit. You can see more at .

As I watched Dylan stand with Katie, his wife to be, I was reminded of how God has a plan for all things. To know Dylan and Katie from their High School years was to know that this day would come. I am sure I was as proud as any parent could possibly be. There is something about watching your god-son grow from baby boy, to child, to teenager, to young adult, to man. It would be my heart's desire that every parent could love their child with the heartbeat God gave me for Dylan the first time I held him in my arms. So many of the children born into this world today do not know that kind of love.

Can I encourage those of you who today have children of all ages still at home… Be frisky with your kids this fall - laugh, play, enjoy them, because someday they grow up and then they are the ones doing the watching.

Continue to lift up Pure Joy in prayer. Continue to pray for us as God is at work with our schedule for the next year or so.


Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Awesome two weeks...

Greetings sister and brothers in Christ. Yes, I realize some of you guys are taking a look into the blog every once in a while. We girls aren?t holding that against you! Ha,ha

Last Tuesday night I had the opportunity to travel to Jonesboro, AR and minister to the ladies from the Jonesboro area as they met at Walnut Street Baptist Church. God is really doing an awesome thing there for the women in the community. Five minutes with the group of ladies there in leadership and you can tell that this was a God idea not a man made one. You actually can see the fruit of their obedience to provide ministry to these women throughout the summer. Way to go girls!

Then last night my mom and I traveled to Texarkana to share with a group of ladies there at First Baptist church. The Women?s ministry provided a meal and the theme was ?Dinner with the King?. The Spirit of God was all over the place and we all had the great privilege of getting in on the time with Him. Again, just able to see the response to the Spirit throughout the evening!

I want to plant a seed in some of your hearts out there. We are headed to Nicaragua in May. If you think your church would be interested in this opportunity please contact me through the website staff page. I would love to visit with you and come visit your church, if you would like.

We had an all day Ministry Staff meeting last week We are seeking God on several opportunities for 2010. As those become clear, through prayer, we will share them with you.

I want to encourage you more than ever to pray about becoming a part of Pure Joy as a Friend, as a prayer partner, as a monthly giver, and as someone who actually goes with us! Please ask God how He would have you be involved! He knows the plans He has for all of us! Thank you from the Pure Joy Staff for coming alongside us to be obedient to what God has directed us to do. Don?t forget to pray for our missionaries on the field and the ones who are stateside as well. They need us to undergird them!


Monday, September 28, 2009

Dead things...

This past Friday afternoon I walked out behind our house to spot something in the distance that I couldn’t quite make out. As I got closer to the object, I realized it was a big ol catfish head and part of the body that had been discarded by someone fishing the lake. (We live on a peninsula of the lake.) I took a stick to it to roll it over and whewwww we are talking some major stink!!

I went in the house and got my mom and told her she had to see this. (In retrospect, I don’t have a clue why she needed to see it!) Anyway, she came out and looked at it and we both had no problem agreeing that it stunk! Then we began the process of trying to figure out how it got in that close to the house, buzzards, a raccoon, cat, etc. (In retrospect, I don’t have a clue why either one of us needed to know that either!)

That ole dead fish reminds me of how the enemy likes to drag up the past. But it also reminds me that when something is dead the only thing that can come from stirring it up is a big stink! Next time the enemy tries to drag up your past, don’t roll it over...just keep walking! Jesus paid it all!

Keep all the missionary women all over the world in your prayers and also pray for Pure Joy as God directs us on our trips for 2010-2011.


Monday, September 21, 2009

Two in One...

I’m asking Patty to post this in the Friends of Pure Joy letter and to the blog so we can all get back on the same page together. I had several people say they went to the blog while we were gone to the Middle East but didn’t see updates there. The reason there are no blogs posted when we travel is because we use our "Friends of Pure Joy" distribution list to update you. If you want to get the updates when we are out of the country, please go to the web site and sign up as a Friend of Pure Joy.

Now for the update from our trip! We are all back and doing well. This is the first time we didn’t have any of the team members get really ill. Thanking and praising our Lord and Savior for that! We had a couple of people have bouts with some stomach stuff, but nothing like we usually experience when we are gone overseas.

We had an incredible time with the ladies we were given the opportunity to minister to in the Middle East. God clearly spoke to the hearts of several of us on the team regarding some personal decisions we had been praying over. I personally had clarity from Him on something I have been struggling with almost five months. Sometimes I think the retreats are more for the team than the ladies, but I know He touches both!

I want to take a moment to ask every one of you who are reading this as a blog or as a "Friend of Pure Joy"….please take some time to pray about if God wants you to partner with Pure Joy in some shape, form or fashion -- not just as individuals, but your church. We have several retreats on the horizon for 2010. Each of those will need sponsoring churches. I encourage you to talk with your Women’s Ministry Director, WMU Director, and or Missions Director about my availability to come in and visit with your church family. We are looking for sponsoring churches from all over the U.S.

Please pray as you never have before for His Kingdom Work! Near and Far! It is time for the Children of the King to start letting others know who our Abba (Daddy) is!


Thursday, September 3, 2009

It's time...

Well, the trunks are full and the team is ready and those awaiting our arrival are ready as well. Now it is down to the last minute details. You know the ones where no matter what you do you think you are forgetting something. And when you’re sitting on the plane you realize you actually did forget something but why waste a good parachute!

I want to thank all of you that have been giving to this trip and to the ministry through prayer, finances, and letting your loved ones go with us. I know that there will be treasure stored up for you in Heaven when the day comes.

Please remember to sign up as a Friend of Pure Joy if you want to stay up with us while we are gone. I will be trying to write daily updates and Patty will post them for us.


Thursday, August 27, 2009

Accountability and Fun…..

Weekly I meet with a couple of ladies for accountability. We encourage one another about staying in the word, prayer, and ask the hard questions like: Have you put anything evil before your eyes this week? Have you been any place you shouldn’t have been? Have you gossiped, lied, etc, etc. Today, I shared with them that the biggest thing I’m dealing with is my mom’s retirement. You know I have counseled people for over 28 years that have had to deal with the issue of retirement. I remember when my Spiritual Dad retired, I got to see my Spiritual Mom ‘really’ practice what she had taught me over the years about how to honor your husband, and submission with a pure heart, etc. That was so much easier before he retired. Ha,ha,ha,ha,ha,ha In fact, I mused many times as I watched her make the adjustment to my Spiritual Dad being home and around all the time. The funniest thing was her frustration with his nibbling between meals habit. I remember her commenting one time that he eats from the time he gets up till he goes to bed! Yes, you guessed it……He never gained a pound. And there you have the root issue! Hah,a,ha,ha

Funny how easy it is to live with each other when one or both of you are at work and only see each other for a few hours in the evening and then go to bed and get up and start the process over the next day. Even the weekends are something you look forward to in regard to spending time together. But all that changes when you are together 24-7.

My mom and I are blessed in that I still go to the office and spend most days. However, we have had our share of adjustments and are still working on it. Let me share a few laughs with you.

The first thing that started happening was the cleaning syndrome. It is almost funny. Women start cleaning. Men start building, remodeling, etc. And the really smart people travel! My Spiritual Mom and Dad do a lot of that.

My mom has cleaned anything that sits still longer than one minute. Her closet, my closets, her drawers, my drawers, her cabinets, my cabinets, etc. In fact, several weeks ago I told her, "just don’t tell me what you’ve cleaned today. If I end up missing something I will deal with it but don’t tell me if you cleaned anything of mine. Then if I don’t miss it I didn’t need it anyway".

Once the inside of the house was cleaned then you got it…we moved to the outside. Shrubs, flower beds, trees, etc. Can we say ‘heat exhaustion’? I finally had to just tell her that I have accepted the fact that one day I may drive off to work and come home and find her dead in the yard. The hard part of this is that last week she decided to dig up a pecan tree trunk outside our screened-in porch. That was last week. Monday night of this week,when I came in from prayer time, she was out there digging and hacking away at that tree trunk. So, Tuesday when we came in from our day of Doctors visits, again she was out there digging and hacking away. Yes, I went out and helped take part in the digging and hacking. Not because I really wanted to dig and hack. But, it was the right thing to do.

After about 30-40 mins of digging and hacking I started thinking maybe I was going to be found dead in the yard! Ha,haha,ha.

Another thing that has happened since my mom retired is ,for some reason we both have this tendency to want to help each other DRIVE! I don’t know how either one of us got to where we were going before she retired!

All and all I must say however, my mom is a gem! Not many mothers and daughters get the opportunity to have the friendship relationship that the two of us share. God is so good to have allowed it during our life time! I’m praying for much more life time with my mom, but this means she will have to retire from digging and hacking or you will find us both dead in the yard!

I told my accountability group that I have found myself praying for a husband since my mom retired because we need someone around to do all this work!

Don’t forget our Middle East trip is just two weeks away. Pray, Pray, Pray!


Monday, August 17, 2009

It's Monday...

Hope this finds everyone having had a good weekend. School is getting back in the swing around here and for many of you it has already started.

My precious niece informed us that this year she was going with the “hippie style” of clothing. To which my mom and I had a quiet chuckle between us. "Miss Stylish of America" going “hippie” yeah, right. My sister took the first round of buying clothes for the school year. Best we can figure out she got several pairs of jeans and some blouses. However, we never heard the term bell bottom or tie-dyed. Makes you wonder doesn’t it.

This weekend my mom and I are going to visit my niece and Nana gets her shot at buying clothes for "Miss Stylish of America" that is going “hippie”. Personally, I will do what I always do when the two of them shop together, find the nearest coffee shop and a book. I love shopping with them!

Would love to hear some of your back to school moments. It is always so much fun to watch the preparation of it all!

Let’s do remember all our children who are attending public, private, and home school this year and pray for their salvation, spiritual growth, and protection from the influences of this world!

Changing topics, our Middle East trip is around the corner. Please remember us in prayer. We will be packing on the 31st and we need everything to fit in those trunks and make it through to the other side. We still have over 25 missionary women who need to be sponsored so please, if you feel led of the Lord, jump on board and make a donation towards this trip.

I have given the Team that is going to the Middle East our word for the trip. It is "Behold Him!" That is my prayer -- that we will "Behold Him" in every shape, form, and fashion! May you also desire that in your hearts.


Monday, August 10, 2009

"Emotional Kate Gosselin: Why I still wear my ring??"

Kate Gosselin is the reality mom of Kate and Jon plus eight. As I read this headline on the yahoo news page I thought of my own headline for the past 4 weeks...

Hormonal Vickie Arruda: Why I am just glad to get a ring on my swollen hands ...

Ok, so today I made it in to see my oncologist for my six month check up. Praise God I am officially 3 years clear of cancer as of this month. I am also clear of everything else due to my hysterectomy two months ago. This has resulted in what I personally call, "hormonal mania". Translated this means that at random moments in time I become a human sprinkler system. Seriously, if I would just stand up and shake instead of allowing the sweat to saturate my clothing, the grass would be greener on the other side. This also means that no matter what you do, I will be agitated about it. Why? I don't know! Do I have to have an answer for everything! Oh, see what I mean. This also means that I will be hyper sensitive about anything you say about me good or bad. If it's good, I won't believe it and if it's bad, I will be agitated about it. The other night my mom informed me that she felt I had been a little irritable and moody the last couple of weeks. To which I responded, Well, I just don't agree with that! Yes, I was agitated again and in denial. Ha,ha,ha Oh, and let's not for forget the ?tear faucet?. You know what that is. That is Niagara Falls just below your tear duct glands that overflow at random. Recently, someone was concerned about my crying at which point I encouraged them with?Oh, I'm not really crying, my body is but I?m not in on it!? Did I mention denial?

Today, of course my oncologist was not one bit concerned about it all. He said this is a normal response to the hysterectomy. My surgeon also told me the same thing last night over the phone. Because of the type of breast cancer I had I can?t take anything with hormones in it. I'm thinking I have enough already! Anyway, he did start me on something to level me out. Praise God! I?m also praying it shuts down the sprinkler system and Niagara Falls and I return to a peaceable state of being. I must say, the Holy Spirit has been working over time in my life these past four weeks or it would have really been ugly!

Don't forget to be praying for our Middle East trip -- it is less than four weeks away. Wow! Can't believe it! We still have missionary women that need to be sponsored for this trip, so if the Lord so leads you, please be obedient! We at Pure Joy International love you!


Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Mexico - Lukewarm?

Hello again - Vickie is out of town and asked me to share some of my recent experiences with you. So here goes -

The Jeff Stotts family (that’s mine) spent two consecutive weeks in July on the road. First, we traveled with two other families and two extra teenagers to Reynosa, Mexico to minister at Rio Bravo Ministries Children’s Home. It was hot, hard, exhausting and WONDERFUL! We conducted a Music VBS – Wade accompanied on the guitar, Jeff and I led the Music rotation (singing everything in Spanish with a NE Arkansas twist), Will helped with the youngest group and Melody helped in crafts and teaching the motions to the songs. It was an amazing experience for our family. As we left there I hoped that the Lord would call us there to serve full-time. I just knew He was calling me .

After the long drive home, we had one day to prepare to leave for a family vacation to Gatlinburg. I had many expressions of concern from friends about how we were going to be ready to leave; how I would get the laundry done and packed, etc. I believe it was God’s plan that we be gone two weeks in a row. After the mountaintop experience we had in Mexico, we were sitting in the middle of the gorgeous Smoky Mountains. God’s glory was everywhere. We each spent time with the Lord every morning and shared what He was showing us. Wade was reading a book called “Crazy Love” by Francis Chan. Before you call and scold me for letting him read something with that title, let me share the subtitle, “Overwhelmed by a relentless God”. He read the whole book in one day. (I’m hoping he can count it in his summer reading requirement for Junior English this Fall.) Anyway, he passed it on to me and said, “Mom, you gotta read it”. Well, I started it, still pondering and glowing about Mexico and again, wishing we could just go there and make our lives really count for God. Well, “Crazy Love” is worth the read. But Chapter Four held my attention for many days. Even after we returned from our Gatlinburg vacation, I read and re-read it. “Profile of the Lukewarm” is the title of the chapter. It is 20 pages of “Lukewarm is . . .” with scripture following each one.

Through that reading God has revealed to me that I am willing to move Mexico, or even to move across town to a less desirable neighborhood to minister in His name, but what about where I live right now! What impact have I made for eternity with those who are right here around me? When He showed me that, He prompted me to call my neighbor who has visited our church, and invite her to my “Life Group” (Sunday School Class). You know what – she came! Gloria Dios! (that means Glory to God in NE Arkansas Spanish) There are a few other things I’m feeling led to do in my neighborhood. Please pray for me because I know the good I ought to do and I want to do it – James 4:17 Wendy paraphrase.

“Jesus replied: ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ ‘This is the first and greatest commandment.” Matthew 22:37-38

“And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.” Matthew 22:39

Because of Jesus –
Wendy Stotts

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Did you relax...

What is it about getting back to familiar settings that is so nice? Remember last week the blog lead in was “Getting Older”. Well, I suppose this has to do with the very same thing. People have asked, “did you have a relaxing time on your vacation?” Again, I was on the beach with two 15 year old girls and a beach full of boys. No! I did not relax!

Truthfully, I saw a lot of other adults who weren’t looking too relaxed either. But, these are those memorable times in life that you look back on and say, “remember when we…”

I’m not there yet! (Ha - ha - ha)

Hope everyone is doing well and remembering to pray for our upcoming retreat to the Middle East. We are so excited. We have 50 women signed up and 17 on a waiting list. My dear friends, this so speaks to the need of this ministry and others like it. Again, please pray and see if God would have you partner with us in prayer, going, and giving.


Monday, July 20, 2009

Getting Old...

We are here in Gulf Shores with all the other thousands of people that are here in Gulf Shores, Alabama. Yesterday when we arrived we got unpacked and headed straight to the water with my niece and her precious friend; they are 15 year old girls - need I say more. As we began our descent into the sea of bodies I noted a group of boys (5 to be exact) grouped up to my left. Being a good Aunt I made sure we made it well past them before setting up our site. Off to the water the girls went wearing much of nothing in my humble opinion, but remember I’m getting old. It took that group of boys about 10 minutes to spot those two girls out in the water. My mom was oblivious to the event that was beginning to unfold until I said, “sharks in the water”. I suppose I could have used a different term. Anyway, I directed her to the 5 young boys headed out to the girls who I lovingly deemed “the minnows”.

The next hour was quite entertaining as we watched the sharks move in slowly and circle and the minnows pretend not to see them but loving every minute of it. This entertainment went on for some time and my mom and I had a couple of good laughs. Oh, don’t worry, REMEMBER I’m getting old so when all of a sudden the Sharks and Minnows exit the water and start heading towards us, I tell my mom, “this should be good”. It was very entertaining as well but in the end the Mama Whale (Aunt Vickie) swallowed everyone whole. That is what happens when you get old - you ruin everyone’s fun! Hmmmmmmm

Don’t forget to continue lifting up our Middle East trip!


Friday, July 17, 2009


Had a great day this week with the team that is going to the Middle East this coming September. There is nothing more exciting to me than watching a team come together in all the different areas of ministry required of the journey! Watching everyone work towards ‘excellence’ for His Glory and the hearts of our missionary women on the field is like finding the perfect watermelon on a hot summer day! Pure pleasure and enjoyment!
Ok, the fact that team member Debbie G. made caramel popcorn for me added some fun! Yes, I shared it with the team. But I can’t say my heart was pure about wanting to do that! ha, ha,ha

Wendy is on the road returning from a mission trip to Mexico with her family. She will be writing the blog next week and I promise you she has a lot to share about her trip.

Please continue to pray for Pure Joy and very specifically for our trip in September. Lift up the missionaries that will be attending and prayerfully ask God if HE would encourage you to give.

I am headed to Gulf Shores for a week with my family. Please pray for me as this white cotton ball is exposed to the elements. My goal is NOT to come home looking like a cherry!

Hmmmm, I have a lot of food analogies going on in this blog. I better go grab a bite of something, I must be hungry.

Have a great weekend!


Monday, July 6, 2009

Eye openers...

You know what those are don’t you? Those moments along the way in our lives when God allows us to hear something, observe something, read something, etc. that really puts life back into perspective. Well, this weekend I had one of those eye-opening moments.

Friday afternoon, before I left the office, I picked up a book that had been on my shelf for some time. But for whatever reason, (His Timing), I had not been drawn to it until then.

The book is on China as one of the last superpowers of the world before the great battle of Armageddon. I have hardly put the book down since I started reading it Friday night. I actually, spent all day on the fourth in my PJ’s with that book in my hand.

Now why the eye opening moment? Because weeks previous to this, there was this stuff going on in my home church that was depressing. You know how that is too. Home churches are like families, and if you have a family you have stuff along the way…same applies to our churches and both provide us an opportunity to grow!!!! The point….. !!

God reminded me that our missionary women and their families risk their lives in some of these foreign countries with the only desire, “to share the Good News of The Gospel”.

I was so challenged to look into my heart and see, do I desire to share the Good News every opportunity I have. Am I making opportunities? Truthfully, I used to have that heart beat, but somewhere a long the way I have been lured away from that desire. And I use the word lured because that is what the enemy does-- he lures us away from the sharing of the Gospel with lots of spiritual things!

Well, my eyes are ‘opened’ again, praise God!!! If yours aren’t “wake up my friend”!

Please pray for missionaries all over this world and remember you are one too! And don’t forget there is an enemy out there ready to lure all of us asleep. Let’s help keep each other awake on the watch!!

Please continue to pray for Pure Joy as the team prepares to go to an undisclosed location in the Middle East. Pray for the women who will attend. We already have women signed up and a waiting list. Pray God will have just the women He wants there.

If you want to be a part of giving to this retreat, please see the section on our home page that directs you to giving online or by mail.

Look for the opportunity to tell someone about Him today, and praise God we can do so without risking our lives--at least for this season, in America.


Monday, June 29, 2009


As I write this blog this morning I am thinking about the 4th -6th grade Sunday school class that I teach with two other gentlemen. As the kids arrived yesterday morning, the topic of discussion among them was soooooo a reflection of the world. The topic was no doubt, Michael Jackson. They were also aware of the deaths of Farrah Fawcett and Ed McMahon. So, instead of interrupting their discussion I gave them a challenge. I said, who can give me three things you have learned about each one of these people over the weekend. They did a very good job which did let me know they were highly exposed to the media of it all. Ok, except for one of our fourth graders who wanted to share three things with us about "Water Fawcett". Certainly you can understand the child’s mistake. Ha,ha,ha,ha! They were all very proud of themselves and the knowledge they had attained during the past several days. Then I gave them this challenge. Tell me three things you know about Jesus - and you cannot repeat anything someone else has already said about Him. It was great to listen to them share the knowledge they had gleaned from those who have invested in their lives along the years. I am amazed at their ability to share what is in their heads. I long for those things to become heart issues for them.

Moms I share this with you to say, our children are taking in media at an incredible rate beyond our comprehension as adults! Please, KNOW what your children are being exposed to on a daily bases through media, teachers, family, peers, etc. Do you and your children KNOW as much about the man called JESUS as you do about the things of this world?

Thank you so much for your prayers last week as our precious Linda Roach, administrative assistant for the ministry, experienced a light heart attack and underwent testing. The testing revealed blockages that will be treated with medication! The Great Physician at work!!!

Pray for us at Pure Joy as we prepare for our trip in September to an undisclosed location. We are in the preparation process and need your prayers!

Also, pray as we are receiving more and more contacts from churches that want to get involved with Pure Joy. We are thanking and praising God for them!



Monday, June 22, 2009

". . . but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever." Psalm 73:26

Vickie is in Tulsa this morning, with our ministry administrative assistant Linda Roach. Linda had a mild heart attack a few days ago and is undergoing a procedure today. Please pray with us that "God is the strength of her heart" both physically and spiritually today. Vickie will update us when she returns.

Wendy Stotts

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Pondering Holiness...

Vickie was here in Jonesboro last week and I shared with her my concern about the shortage of holiness in our world today, even in the church. I truly want to be holy; I want to live a holy life. How do I do that? We sing a song in corporate worship sometimes, “holiness, holiness, is what I long for; holiness, is what I need; holiness, holiness is what you want from me”. (Jeff tells me the name of the song is “Take My Life” in case you’re interested) I am a pleaser by nature. I want everyone to be happy with me. I’ve lived many of my 45 years pursuing approval from family, teachers, church members, and at times maybe even God?! It is exhausting! Through the 20 plus years I’ve served with my husband in ministry, I’ve learned that it’s impossible to please everyone, Jesus didn’t even do it – He didn’t try. There’s peace and rest in that. So, how about holiness then – can it be achieved? Our worship team at church is doing a book study called “The Way of a Worshiper: Discover the secret to friendship with God” by Buddy Owens. Interestingly enough, Mr. Owens addressed holiness in this book. “But holiness is not what God wants from you. Holiness is what God wants for you. You cannot make yourself holy. Only God can make you holy... Holiness is God’s gift of grace. The only way to get holiness is to surrender to it.”

“I am the Lord, who makes you holy.” Exodus 31:13
“I am the Lord, who makes you holy.” Leviticus 20:8
“I am the Lord, who makes you holy.” Leviticus 22:32

Mr. Owens goes on to say, “God doesn’t want our holiness – He wants His holiness in us.”

My son Wade just used his iphone to look up the definition of “holy” for me (!) Holy is defined as an adjective meaning “belonging to or derived from or associated with a divine power”. So, I’m thinking the answer to my question of can holiness be achieved is YES! His holiness is in me. My flesh and will can choose not to reflect His holiness, but it’s there. Thank you Jesus for making me holy! Help me to continually reflect Your holiness.

Please continue to pray for Pure Joy. God is opening many doors and beginning to solidify plans for the Fall of ’09 and ’10. He is good and He is holy!

Because of Jesus,

Wendy Stotts

Tuesday, June 2, 2009


This morning as I watched the news of the Air France airliner that went down somewhere in the Atlantic as it made its track from Brazil to Paris, I was again reminded of the importance of each one of us knowing to the best of our ability that we are in God?s will for our lives daily. Why? Because when tragedy touches our lives, it is good to know that we were doing exactly what God would have us doing at such a time. Please remember all the wives, husbands, moms, dads, siblings, grandparents, aunts/uncles, other family members, friends, peers, etc. who had someone on that airliner as the search continues.

May we be on our knees for one another in these times!


Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Greetings Precious Ones,

So today I am getting ready for my first day back to ministry business. I have actually been indoors for a good week which is an act of God! I know my friends that know me have really been unable to believe I have stayed down and followed Dr. Emerson’s orders to take it easy! The really hard part begins now because I feel better but I still have to be careful for another 5 weeks. So, the truth is, I will need to be more mindful of being careful than I have been for the past 7 days.

Isn’t that like our walk with God? When we are in the middle of struggles and storms it is sometimes easier to call on Him, focus on Him, draw our strength from Him but when we ‘feel’ better we start exercising that independence again that we gleaned from the ‘garden of Eden’. We don’t even realize we have been doing it until all a sudden we wake up in another storm over our heads! I pray for the day that we as His girls don’t need a storm or a circumstance to cause us to run into His arms. I pray for us as His girls just to wake up daily with the mindset that Abba is in the House! I want that kind of love and excitement towards my LORD and Savior everyday! I want to have that natural overflow of a heart committed and devoted to Him and His Ways all the time; even when it’s stormy! Because His Word is clear to us, the storm must come.

Well, we are having our first Team meeting for our undisclosed location retreat to be held in September 2009. Please pray for the team, for the ladies that will attend, and all the provision that will need to come in to provide for the time with the ladies.

I want to take time to share with you that it so excites us at Pure Joy when people come on board to give to the ministry that none of us at Pure Joy can figure out how you were moved to give except for God Himself. Every time that happens it is like God personally saying to us, ‘This was my idea and I will do it!’ I love that!!!! So, pray for us, the ministry staff of Pure Joy, that we will continue to just be yielded vessels to His counsel, direction and HE WILL ALWAYS BE THE ONE TO GET THE GLORY!!

Blessings to each of you,

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

A Youthful Soul...

Vickie has really done VERY well with the surgery she had on Monday. Praise God! I will, on her behalf, thank you all for the prayers you have lifted up for her over the past few days. Please continue to do so.

As Vickie and her mom, Shirley, were getting in the car to leave this morning, Vickie pulled a frog puppet out of the trunk and made it say something to Melinda and me. Then she said, "maybe I'll grow up some day and then I'll probably die". I know she was talking about playing with the puppet and maybe growing out of playing with toys, but I haven't been able to get her words out of my mind since they left. Maybe it's because I've had so many thoughts lately about how I still feel like a little girl inside and can't imagine that little girl having responsibility for grown up things. Maybe it's because I'm seeing my oldest son turn into a man and my second son right behind him and can't imagine them not being little boys anymore. I may not be playing with a frog puppet on the outside, but I still feel like a little girl on the inside. My "jar of clay" is grown up and has been patched many times, but I still feel like a little girl on the inside. 2 Corinthians 4:16 says, "Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day." Above this verse in my Bible, the words are written "youthful soul". There's no date, no pastor's name, nothing else, just those words "youthful soul". So, yes, Vickie, the day we're grown up, is the day we'll die! Or to clarify, our "jar of clay" will die. "We" will be forever with our Father. 2 Corinthians 4:17-18 finishes by saying "For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes NOT on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal." The difficulty of being responsible for grown up things, for watching your children grow up and the sadness that accompanies that, that our bodies are growing older and wasting away (and requiring surgery) - those are the SEEN. We can fix our eyes on what is UNSEEN and ETERNAL.

Praise God that Vickie has a "youthful soul" - Help me God to keep a youthful soul!

Please continue to pray for the retreat in the undisclosed location planned for the Fall.

Wendy Stotts

Monday, May 11, 2009

Poland Report...

Please forgive me in my delay of getting the information out on our glorious trip to Poland! Glorious is a good word to describe our time with our sweet sisters in Christ in Poland!

We started the fullness of this journey in the airport in Chicago where the entire team came together for the first time. Three of our team members had never met the rest of the team in person. It was the beginning of watching the incredibleness of God! The one prayer that we prayed over and over is that God would do incredible things on the trip.

The team was just as all the teams are that travel together with Pure Joy-- His perfect team for the place we were going to minister.

We arrived in Krakow in the afternoon and got checked into our hotel. We then went out to dinner in a little hole in the wall establishment known for its authentic polish food. It was great! It is amazing the things they can do with sausage, cabbage and potatoes.

Then back to the hotel for rest. Got up the next morning and headed out for a day of sightseeing. Lots of thanks to Jerry and Saber who were our drivers and guides. We visited Auschwitz concentration camp where Hitler took many lives, not just Jews. We then visited the ‘Old Town Square’ of Krakow (thanks Susie for getting us around) which was very quaint and beautiful. Then we returned to the hotel, had some great pizza and began putting things together for the retreat.

Thursday we continued preparations for the retreat until around 3:00 p.m. when the ladies began arriving. We did have one group come in very early because they had ridden a train all night to get there. Of course they went sightseeing for a few hours, as many of the women had never been to Krakow. By dinner time we had all but two of our women signed in and ready to go. The other two were there by morning.

I cannot even begin to tell you what an incredibly sweet time we had in the LORD. The worship was wonderful, the messages right on, the hospitality just right, the fellowship great, and the free time a blessing! These women had great hearts for their people groups and while no different than the rest of us dealing with marriage, family, children, finances, work, etc., their love for Christ and desire to serve Him in spite of their circumstances was obvious.

We visited a house church on Sunday with some of the women and it was so sweet to watch them minister to the locals. They have three services a day. One in Polish, one in English, and one in either English with a Polish interpreter or was that Polish with an English interpreter? Anyway, you get the picture.

All and all it was ‘incredible’!

Now, we move on to our next place of ministry. Please pray as we prepare to go to another undisclosed location to minister to our ladies overseas. We will be going in September. The team is already coming together and our theme is “Where is Your Treasure?” Our theme verse is, “For where your treasure is, there your Heart will be also.” Matt. 6:21

Please begin to pray for the team, the ladies in the undisclosed location, for provision for the trip. So far we have 18 ladies already signed up. Pray and ask God to show you how He would have you be a part of this trip, if at all, in the area of prayer and giving. There are some other ways to be involved if you or your church are interested contact me at

Again, thank you all that journeyed with us to Poland through prayers, giving, and going!!! May God Bless you many times in return.


Monday, April 20, 2009

Calling on all Pure Joy bloggers...

We are just seven days away from leaving for Krakow Poland. Can’t believe it is finally upon us. We spent the day Saturday packing. There is nothing more fun than packing with the team and getting to see all the gifts we are taking to our ladies overseas.

I want to tell you that it has been a blessing to see the churches who have gotten involved near and far through prayer, giving, gifts, and going. These ladies in Poland are in for a treat.

Please continue to remember the Poland missionaries in prayer and the team as well. When the team met Saturday, we spent our first amount of time in prayer for each other and the missionary women. Seems the team as a whole has been through some really tough warfare as we head into this trip. But, I also must caution us all, ‘we are in a spiritual battle’ since the day we said, ‘yes’ to Jesus in our lives!! The enemy hates us and will do whatever he can to steal our joy and testimony! Girls, abide, stay behind the cross, and keep walking!!! Walk in love, Walk in righteousness, Walk in the spirit, etc. But do WALK!

Also, we have a couple of retreats we are working on for the fall. One is again in an undisclosed location, the other is not. As soon as we can give you more information so you can be praying, we will let you know.

Yesterday I had the sweet opportunity to speak to some of the ladies of Eastside Baptist Church in Ft. Smith, AR. What a sweet time it was to share with the women why we should, ‘Dance While We Can’! Thank you ladies for you attendance and your generosity!

Remember, we become like that which we focus on….Focus on HIM!

Have a great week! Friends of Pure Joy, Patty will be sending you updates while we are in Poland! If you are not a Friend of Pure Joy please register at


Monday, April 13, 2009

Yes, "The Hills are Alive"...

Vickie asked me to write the blog today - so here goes -

My husband surprised me at Christmas by telling me, (through a very creative video produced by our oldest son Wade), that for our 20th wedding anniversary in March, we would be going to Salzburg, Austria. Now for those of you who are familiar with my all-time favorite movie, "The Sound of Music", you know exactly why I would be excited about going to Salzburg, Austria. The movie was filmed there in 1964 - the year I was born. I grew up singing the songs from the movie and can pretty much say every line of the script. There's just something special about it. Of course the beautiful songs, the scenery, the romance, the drama, the laughter, and not one bad word, or one hint of immorality. Our eight year old daughter, Melody, watched the whole movie with me yesterday afternoon and I think she's hooked now!

Well, I'm happy to report that Salzburg was amazingly beautiful in real life!!! As we flew over the snow-capped Swiss Alps, I was overwhelmed with the glory of God! Nature is very often my reminder of how big God is! As we landed in the middle of those mountains and started our sightseeing, I was constantly amazed by the beauty and the history of the city. We saw buildings constructed in the year 600!!!! What - that is 1000 years before our country was discovered! One of the churches we toured was built in 600. It was the Nonnberg Abbey which was the site where the Von Trapp family hid from the Nazis at the end of the movie. As the family hid behind the grave markers and the "Reverend Mother" locked the gate behind them, she reminded Maria that they would not be alone in their journey through the mountains to escape Captain Von Trapp's being forced to serve under Adolph Hitler. She said "I will lift up my eyes to the hills . . . from where shall my help come? My help comes from the Lord, who made heaven and earth." Psalm 121:1-2.

Whatever you face today - remember "The Hills are Alive" - "He is alive"!!!

Pure Joy Ministry Staff

Monday, April 6, 2009

Fun Saturday...

Evergreen Baptist Church, Tulsa, Oklahoma, one of our sponsoring churches for our Poland trip, held its' first Benefit Bazaar this past Saturday. Here is an overview from Linda Roach on how it went:

The vendors were mostly EBC members and extended family who have home-based businesses. There were about 15 booths lining our gathering area (foyer). Some examples of items offered were jewelry, stained glass mosaic crosses, children’s books, games and apparel, make-up, photography, home decorator items, etc. Many of our members made home-baked goods for us to sell. We also had homemade salsa which was such a hit Kristy had to take orders to make it for more people. There was a steady flow of people all day – not only our church members, but also friends of our people and those in the area who just saw the signs and came in. People stayed around to visit and sit in the coffee shop with something to drink and cookies, brownies or cinnamon rolls bought from our baked goods table. Lots of laughter and great fellowship happening.

We had a number of people who stopped by the ‘Pure Joy’ booth to ask for information about the ministry. Some of those were from other churches and we made some good contacts for ‘Pure Joy’. Our own members are getting more and more excited about Pure Joy and ways that they can be involved in the ministry. Our church staff and members have already said they want to continue this and maybe do it again as soon as the fall. A number of people offered to make things if we do it again and we’d have better lead time for people to prepare the next time.

We know we raised enough to sponsor two missionaries and probably will be very close to three by the time all the final figures are in. It was a great “Kingdom day” as God’s children spent time serving, enjoying one another’s company and supporting missionaries through it all.

To God be the glory for all that was done.

This note from Linda gives the best illustration of how Pure Joy is an inside out ministry. They started this idea to help raise funds for the missionary women and look at what God did to encourage their church family in the process. Great Job EBC!!!

Poland is just around the corner. All bloggers and friends of Pure Joy, please remember the missionary women and the team for Poland in your prayers!


Monday, March 30, 2009

Snow Fun...

Saturday Pure Joy went to Tulsa, OK to provide a ‘Whiff of Pure Joy’ for Evergreen Baptist Church. We had such a sweet time with the ladies there! They were absolutely a wonderful group of ladies and they are excited about Pure Joy! Several of the ladies from Evergreen will be joining us on the Poland trip and we are excited about that.

We drove into Tulsa as a light snow hit against the car window. However, by the time we left Evergreen several hours later, we were surrounded by about five inches of snow. It was wild! Ever noticed when you are in bad weather of any sort that all the passengers in your vehicle decide they need to help you drive? I wish I could have videotaped the conversations that went on for approximately an hour and a half while we headed back to Arkansas, because I’m confident we could have won the $10, 000 prize on AFV America’s Funniest Videos. Sure I ran over a couple of curves, but that was because other car tracks made it look like it was the way to go. Okay, if truth be told, I wanted to leave the three passengers along the side of the road and even threatened them with that, but my mom was one of the passengers and that made it kind of tricky! Ha,ha,ha,ha,ha,ha!

I’m headed to Longview, TX today to visit with some of our Poland team members.

Please remember to pray for Poland -- it is on the horizon.


Monday, March 23, 2009

Sweet Time...

Saturday we met with most of our Poland Team for the first time since God put us together. It is really a group of characters! The team is made of women from two churches in Oklahoma, three in Arkansas, one in Memphis, and two in Longview, Tx.
We laughed and planned and worshiped together. Yes, of course we broke bread together! The Poland ladies are in for a treat with this team! We have a couple of fireballs that remind me that I’m getting older even if I don’t believe it! Ha, ha, ha.

Sunday I had the opportunity to speak with a precious group of women from Cherokee Hills Church in Oklahoma City, OK. They had such sweet spirits as they learned about Pure Joy and what it means to be one of our sponsoring churches. Our worship leader for Poland, Nikki Boyd, is coming from that church. Pray for the ladies and Nikki to be able to help the church catch the heartbeat of the ministry!!

Lots going on here in preparation for Poland so remember all of us in your prayers. Also, pray for how God would have you be a part of Pure Joy in praying, giving, and going. We have 50 missionary women attending the retreat in Poland and they all need your prayers. If you would like help sponsor a missionary coming to the retreat see the donations section on the home page of the website.

Also, friends of Pure Joy, be watching for a note from me no later than tomorrow regarding our recent trip out of the county.

Remember us in your prayers.


Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Can you belive it...

This past week Pure Joy was in Sheridan, AR on Thursday night where I spoke to a great group of ladies. We shared worship, sweets, and information about Pure Joy. You have to love these two stories…The first one, I met a lady there that I shared a hospital room with in 2002. We neither one remembered each other but her husband saw my name in the brochure and remembered. The lesson here is don’t let those guys tell you they can’t remember. They remember what they want to remember! Ha,ha,ha. Secondly, a lady introduced herself to me and asked me where I was from. I told her from Morrilton, AR. She said we have a house in Morrilton. Really I said. Where? She said on the lake. I said which lake, Overcup? She told me yes. Long story short….they have a lake house right around the corner from my mom and me. They come to fish, etc. I’ve never known who lived in that little yellow house and now I do! Hmmmmm.

Isn’t God fun!!!!

Saturday, Pure Joy traveled to Grace Church in Little Rock, AR. We did a ‘Whiff of Pure Joy’ for a great group of ladies there as well. We had a sweet time of music, messages, lunch and fellowship. If you have never seen their church, it is in a beautiful location just off of Cantrell.

We have a few pictures from our visit there on Saturday because we took Janice to take care of that. Thursday night in Sheridan it was only me. Sorry no pictures girls!

Pure Joy is gearing up for Poland. We have big team meeting this weekend. Looking forward to having the ladies together that will make up this Poland Team. Friends of Pure Joy, please make sure you are praying for the ladies by name! It is your prayers that take us on angel’s wings!

We will be in Oklahoma City, OK this coming weekend to share with a church family there, and then in Tulsa, OK the following weekend. Please pray as God continues to bring women and churches alongside us in our journey!

As always, if you are interested in Pure Joy coming to visit the women in your church, please contact us.

We covet your prayers, support, and going!!


Monday, March 9, 2009

Home Again...

Well, we may be home again, but I promise you that God continues to leave our hearts scattered all over this world!!! We had a wonderful time with our ladies in the undisclosed country we just returned from. There will never be enough thanks to all of the Friends of Pure Joy, bloggers, churches, and others who have come alongside this ministry in the past, in the present, and for the future. You play your role
in these trips as equally as those who step onto the field so, thank you for being a part of His ministry to the ladies on the field.

The group that we met with this time was much smaller in number than we usually meet with. This gave us ample opportunity to get to know all the ladies more in depth. No matter what your background denomination is, I want to encourage you in knowing that the women and their families that we have on the field overseas bringing the Good News of the gospel of Jesus Christ need your prayers, support, and to see your faces when possible! It is good for their soul and spirit! And it is good for our soul and spirit!!

The oppression in some of the countries our ladies are in is overwhelming. Add everyday life to that and you can see the need to pull them out of their cumstances and give them a retreat.

We did a lot of laughing with this group of ladies. We seriously tried to get one of them to understand that we think we should develop a site on our web page just for her that the ladies overseas could just go to for a good laugh every week. She kept us all in stitches. And that was driven by her honesty of herself and the everyday situations they experience in life.

Being with these ladies did remind me of something I try to share with people on a pretty regular basis. I see so much performance in the body of Christ, to put it bluntly so much religion. Nothing stumps the growth of a believer more than religion for the sake of religion.! One of the things that I always hope ladies receive from our ministry is this truth….God isn’t looking at how many times you hit the wall. What He is looking at is your heart!! He wants to see if when you get up you are still heading toward Him. This reveals your heart. And if your heart is right, eventually your outward life and the things you do will line up and you will be authentic from the inside out!!! An orange can look good and be rotten on the inside.
Who wouldn’t rather get an orange that doesn’t look the best on the outside but when you get to the inside it is refreshing and sweet. And to get one that looks good on the outside and taste great too….Now that is the best!

God wants us to be the BEST we can be as His kingdom workers!!!

We all hit walls in our journey. They are called life circumstances. And how we deal with those life circumstances says everything in the world about what we believe about Him and His Word!!! Life circumstances separate the fruit!

Pure Joy has a lot on the table as we step into the next two months. We will be in several churches during this month and the month of April. We will be at FBC Sheridan this coming Thursday night 7:00 – 8:30 as I share my testimony and the birth of Pure Joy International. Then we will be at Grace Church in Little Rock coming this Saturday from 10:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Our theme is “Who Am I”?

Also, we are closing in on our trip to Poland. Pray much for us as the details of this trip continue to be accomplished! We have 50 missionary women already signed up and ready to go!! Pray for the speakers, the music, the team, resources, etc.

You know how to pray and what to pray for because it is you who allow us to go and come on angels wings!!!



Sunday, March 1, 2009

Only Believe...

Girls, as I pen this blog before we leave the country to our undisclosed location to minister, I must tell you that I am in AWE of HIM! Because of your hearts for Him, your kindness to listen to Him and your generosity, we have reached our financial goals and have actually gone abundantly above and beyond what was needed and or that we could imagine for this trip!!!

All of you gave! You gave prayers, cards, encouragement, phone calls, emails, finances, hugs, smiles, joy and it has been obvious that God Himself has done it in and through you because of the spirit of it all!!!

Sometimes, I just wished I could look each one of you in the face and say, “thank you for loving Jesus, thank you for dancing with Him!! Oh, if we could just help the world to know that when we ‘dance’ with Him, there is no greater joy! It reaches from the inside - out! It touches lives and changes hearts!! Thank you Bloggers, Friends of Pure Joy, and the Body of Christ from the east to the west, to the north and to the south! God uses you to let me dance with the stars!! You are the stars in my sky and He is the one that holds us all with His mighty hand!! And I pray that He who knows every star by name blesses your heart, marriage, family, church home, community, state, and the nations because He can and He loves our obedience!!!

Special hello to the ladies from FBC Ft. Smith! Thank you for having us yesterday and we enjoyed worshiping with you and breaking bread physically and spiritually! Leah, you and your ladies keep on dancing!! God is working there!

FBC Morrilton Men and prayer warriors, thank you for praying for us this morning when our flight was cancelled out of Memphis, due to weather. I KNOW that God placed the ticket agent in our path who helped us re-route out of Little Rock because of your prayers! You have to LOVE HIM!!!! Know your prayers have been answered and are being answered!!

Remember us this week while we are gone. If I can blog I will, but no promises!

Loving the Body of Christ through Jesus!


Monday, February 23, 2009

Gone With The Wind...

I know most of you conjure up scenes from the movie when you see that title. I too have a scene that comes into my mind as well; it is of Carol Burnett doing an imitation of Scarlett walking down the staircase. In that scene Carol Burnett has clothed herself in a curtain along with the rod that held it. Very funny and totally creative! Creativity -- isn't it a wonderful thing?! I am constantly amazed at how God has programmed us all to be different, to see things differently, and to do things differently and yet He has given us His Word as a plumb line to keep us going in the same direction for His Glory!!!

His Glory, isn't it a wonderful thing?! The bottom line to it all!

Well, remember the team that is going to an undisclosed location?? We leave this coming Sunday, March 1. We have been blessed by all the friends of Pure Joy who have given to this trip. This past weekend, a couple of the team members did a garage sale and sold things at the mall in Jonesboro to raise funds for the trip. We are in a good place only lacking $3,500 for this trip. If God moves on your heart to
contribute to that last portion, please receive our thanks in advance. It has been amazing to watch how many of you have come to the table to help out! Thank you so much.

Pray for safety as we travel. Pray for the Word that will be spoken in song, message, hospitality, fellowship, activities, etc. Pray that God will use this time to encourage the women, to refresh them, to equip them for the journey and the battles!

I also, want to pray for so many of you who read this blog. I pray today that whatever the enemy has been at work on, trying to steal your joy and your testimony
that God will expose the lies fully and set you free! Never forget that you, my sisters, are Children of the King! While we don't always act like it……our behaviors don't change our identity, but they do reflect over time if we understand our identity. So let's just commit together today to start acting like who we really are! HIS!

Don't forget to pray for Poland it is on the schedule so very soon to. Our team has finally come together. We will have churches being represented from Oklahoma, Arkansas, Texas and Tennessee. That should scare the devil…all these Southern Women. Ha,ha,ha)


P.S. For those of you that are keeping up with the rivalry of my Uncle Charles and I on our Wii Bowling. As of yesterday I am officially ‘only’ 15 games down. Going into our Sunday afternoon time yesterday I was 16 games down. After two hours non-stop I made it to 15 games. As you can see there is a lot of winning and losing going on during that time. Wew! I am determined to get back to an even 0-0 game count with him before the summer. However, if it stops being fun and turns into work I’ll have to give it up!!! So, far I’m just having fun and it’s wearing me out!!!!

Monday, February 16, 2009

Food, Fun, and God At Work...

Yesterday we had a Tex-Mex lunch fundraiser at our home church FBC Morrilton, AR. Once again I got my mom and aunt in the middle of cooking. Pray for them because I suspect they've prayed God would move me into a different family system! Ha,ha,ha,ha

Then Mrs. Pat had to help you-know-who-here mix the brownie batter. Now, really that shouldn't be hard for a person who can read. So, why was that hard for me? I doubled the doubled recipe. (Don't ask!) Truth is, I should not be left alone in a kitchen situation!

Our (Mr. Ben, Mr. Wayne and myself) 4th-6th grade Sunday school class helped set up tables and were assigned to the tables as waiters and waitresses. They were so precious and cute and did a great job. Several of our ladies who have traveled with Pure Joy also helped prepare and helped with clean up afterwards. The church family was very generous and we raised a significant amount of money for our 'undisclosed' trip coming up in two weeks!

For those of you who are keeping record, my Uncle Charles is still killing me in Wii bowling. I'm only 20 games down as of yesterday. We played almost five hours straight. If this ever gets to the place where it feels like work I'm going to have to give it up. So far it is still just fun!!

Hope everyone had a wonderful time in your home churches yesterday. I want to encourage you to please make sure that you are a part of a local body of believers! I love to read Acts 2 and long for the day that the church today could possibly move in the truth of God's Word and the Spirit in such a fashion that the overflow would be similar to Acts 2.

Please pray, pray, pray for the things going on in the weeks and months ahead with trips!

Here are some images from our luncheon with the FBC Family - enjoy!


Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Sliding in two days late….

Well, wouldn’t you know I missed my Monday blog curfew! However, the ministry staff is so busy with preparations for two retreats within 2 months of each other that I myself didn’t even remember until I suddenly had a moment to breathe for a second.

I’m confident that of late I’m not breathing enough! I suspect most of the ministry staff is feeling that way this moment. That is not a good thing unless God Himself takes your breath away by His total Majesty, Glory, Being, Grace, Love, etc. So, pray for us to not miss His Breath in the journey.

Yesterday I had the opportunity to grab some lunch with a sweet sister that is over the “Women’s Ministry” at her church. It was a sweet time to hear about how God is at work in her life and ministry and to see what God is up to regarding their church and Pure Joy. Please pray as we prepare to share with their church in March.

Also, we have a trip to an undisclosed location coming up in two weeks. Pray as we are working diligently to get things prepared and that we stay yielded to His counsel in the process and with every detail! Also, we have Poland on the horizon 2 ½ months out. Pray for that retreat as well.

I want to personally thank all you who have been giving to our trip coming up in two weeks. We still need several $1,000 more dollars to meet the cost of the undisclosed trip but you know me…I am a water walker and know that our Father owns the cattle on a thousand hills. Join me in praying that God will continue to move on the hearts of people to give to this trip.

Don’t forget that I would love to come visit with you about Pure Joy, speak at your women’s events, etc. Whatever it takes for us to be obedient to the ‘call’ God has on this ministry to minister to our missionary women all over the world.


Monday, February 2, 2009


Wow! This past weekend some of the women from our past Quito, Jordan, Costa Rica, and Venezuela teams who live nearby came together to do a "Taste of Pure Joy at Home" for the ladies of FBC Morrilton, AR. Our theme was, "Dance While You Can". It was an awesome time as we laughed, cried, worshiped, got in the Word, had sweet fellowship, gave lots of gifts, and of course we had to eat and that we did! I believe we were all challenged to be much more sensitive to hearing God's voice and living life His way and came to a more clear understanding of what it really means to 'Dance'. Maybe, some of the women will post on the blog their thoughts… (hint, hint)

We have a lot of activity going on with Pure Joy right now. We are taking a team into an undisclosed area in March. We have Poland coming up in April/May. We are locking in dates on the fall retreats. I am trying to get into churches to share the opportunities to join alongside us as we minister to our missionary women all over the world.

Please pray, give, and be willing to go!

A thought for you this week…..In Psalm 8 God says to the Psalmist:

"I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way which though shalt go; I will guide thee with mine eye."

Spurgeon in his commentary on the book of Psalms writes the following regarding the line, "I will guide thee with mine eye".

"As servants take their cue from the master's eye, and a nod or a wink is all that they require, so should we obey the lightest hints of our Master, not needing thunderbolts to startle our incorrigible sluggishness, but being controlled by whispers and love-touches. The Lord is the great overseer, whose eye in providence overlooks everything. It is well for us to be the sheep of his pasture, following the guidance of his wisdom."

The thought for the week: Are you living in such a way that He through the Holy Spirit is able to move you with whispers and love–touches? Or, do you require thunderbolts to startle your incorrigible sluggishness?


Monday, January 26, 2009

Gotta Love Him...

I tell you what….. To know Him even in the smallest sense you've just got to love Him! I mean it is just impossible not to!

I love Sundays! I try to get in a couple of messages from a few of the local Pastors on TV before I even walk out the door to church. These two guys I watch just flat out 'Love the Lord'. Then I get to church and I get to be with these 4th-6th grade kids for an hour. Watching them learn about HIM and being a part of helping them learn about HIM! I love that too. Then also sometimes on Sunday I get to visit with my Pastor a few minutes and we love to talk the latest books and doctrine. I do love that too!

And as soon as church is over the family heads to my Aunt Myrna and Uncle Charles' house to have Sunday lunch. Every Sunday we have family lunch! Like the old days when the family ate after church together at home. I love that too. And I love it that we all have the freedom to invite a straggler if we want to. Then after lunch I get the opportunity to let my Uncle Charles beat my socks right off my feet in Wii bowling. And to be perfectly honest with you, I don't love that!!!

Then it is off to the night service. I love the Sunday night service.
It's family. Everyone is easy and just loves each other or does a good job pretending! And when church is over there is always the where does everyone want to go grab a bite to eat thing. Now, I'm not good about the going out to eat after church unless it is just 2 or 3 other people. The reason is when you have 10-13 people sitting at a oblong table it is just to difficult to communicate with everyone. You end up communicating with just 2 or 3 people anyway so you might as well have your own table. But, I do love fellowshipping with others so I'll suffer through all that! ha,ha,ha

I pray that Sundays bring you joy in your relationship with Him, your church, and family and friends!

We have a lot of things going on with Pure Joy. Friends of Pure Joy you should be getting an email this week about one of the opportunities we have.

Praying for you to have a blessed week!


Monday, January 19, 2009


Wow! Don't you just hate those days that start out for no apparent reason "down" hill. I mean you had your quiet time, you met with the LORD, you love His Word. And then you walk out the door into life and BAM! Now, I'm not talking about a big 'trauma' of some kind. I'm talking about some minnows. I heard a speaker once share this illustration, "I'd rather be eaten by a shark then nibbled to death by a minnow." I guess you'd say the minnows are nibbling today! I know this doesn't sound all spiritual and everything but it's just the truth! And don't think I haven't had a few cries lifted up to the LORD today because I have. But, you know what I have figured out over the years. I am sooooooooo slow when it comes to recognizing the enemy at work on me. My little logical mind wants to find a logical reason for every thought, feeling and emotion. You know what the truth is….some days are just hell storm days. I taught on that once. Obviously, I wasn't listening to the message! Ha,ha,ha,ha,ha

I say all this to say, I 'm glad I can just be honest with you about life. I'm thinking that God intended for us to be real with one another. In fact, if we would all stop pretending we are sooooooo okay all the time, we actually may be able to come alongside each other for the kingdom's sake! Anyway, just some thoughts…. See you on the other side of the storm because as you know…this too shall pass!!!


Thursday, January 15, 2009

Spirit-Filled Weekend...

Well, several of us just returned from Macedonia Baptist Church in Longview, TX. Wow! What an incredible weekend! First off, how can it not be fun to have five women in a vehicle and plenty of snack food headed down the highway. And to top it off, we had instructions from two husbands and Sir Scott (my GPS husband). That is a piece of equipment you put in your car to help you know where you are for those of you that are like me and clueless about technical things and are trying to make something spiritual out of the letters GPS. I know you won't find this hard to believe either, but we didn't exactly follow any one of the directions given to us by the two men and/or the GPS system. We kind of rolled it all together and looked at a map too. The good thing….we made it!!!

Our time in Longview was absolutely Spirit-filled from the moment we walked in the door to the church Sunday morning until we left Sunday night to come home. The spirit of the people was so precious. The praise and worship was truly of the Lord! Bro. Steve allowed me to share my testimony with his church family Sunday morning. Through three illustration tools I was able to share my testimony with this church family in a fashion I have never been led to share before. The move of the Spirit at the end as Bro. Steve opened up the altars was only a movement of God on a people who were willing and needy of His presence at work in their lives. Unreal! Same thing on Sunday night as we shared about Pure Joy International. The spirit of the church was incredible again!

We have been so blessed to visit churches and see God's hand at work. Ridgewood Baptist in Forrest City, AR and Macedonia Baptist in Longview, Tx all within the past four weeks have encouraged my heart that God is at work among us for His Kingdom sake! Precious, Precious, Saints!

Well, the grand finale came as we headed home Sunday night. We rejoiced in the LORD and His goodness, in friendships, and in fellowship! We ate more tator-tots then we should have (that was Janice's fault). Laughed our heads off and acted like we were all in school again! All and all it gave new meaning to a girls' night out!!!!

Don't forget to pray for Poland. We also have Jordan and Honduras coming up in the Fall. If you would like for us to visit your church regarding any of these opportunities for you to partner with us, let us know.


Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Don't let the grass grow under your feet...

Well, if you are like me, you are off and running in 2009. All the family made it home safely from the holidays. As of yesterday, we have rearranged, dusted, vacuumed, thrown away, tried to figure out what the thing we were holding went to, and had several cups of coffee and leftovers while accomplishing those tasks. Honestly, our family had absolutely the greatest Christmas of all time, from my perspective. I loved having everyone home, and not just for an 'in and out' play, but for a 'whole inning'. If you know me, you know I miss the little ones a lot. I also learned that I'm not any good at speed 'Scrabble' and honestly, I'm not good at it if there is no speed involved. We also played a game called 'Balderdash'. It's about a lot of bluffing each other regarding your responses to a statement, work, initials, etc. I learned that bluffing is really just another word for lying! Ha,ha,ha,ha, but bluffing sounds better! We also spent hours on my nephew's Wii and Guitar Hero. Let me say this to you ….the guitar thing….well, I just had to finally give that up because you can only be booed by a video audience so many times before it starts to have a negative effect on you! Ha,ha,ha,ha, However, I did really like the Wii bowling, tennis, and golf. In fact, I believe that I got in a tremendous amount of exercise during the holiday time. I also know I got in a tremendous amount of calories. Hmmmmmm I sense I'm not alone in that statement.

So, what is new for Pure Joy in 2009. First off we will be traveling to Longview, TX, to share with the church family at Macedonia Baptist Church this Sunday morning. I have the privilege of sharing my testimony Sunday morning and Sunday night we will be sharing about Pure Joy with the church family. Then, at the end of this month, Pure Joy will be doing "Pure Joy at Home" an opportunity for my own church family to really gain some understanding of what we do when we are overseas. We are continuing to make plans for the retreat in Poland in April/May and Wendy is putting together another church tour for us in the central part of Arkansas. If any of you would like for us to come visit your state and your church to share about Pure Joy, please email Wendy Stotts at or and we will make arrangements to come your way. We have two more retreats coming up in the Fall of 2009 and we will make you aware of them as when we have locked in the dates. In the meantime, please pray for the teams God would put together to go on all of our retreats along the way. He knows what the missionary women need and He knows what we need.

Remember to lift up our missionary women all over the world and their families near and far. A lot is going on in the world around us and it can seem very overwhelming. Rest, we serve a Mighty God. He is enough!