Monday, December 30, 2013

Stepping Away for a Moment...

I want to step away this week from our look at the Character of God to place a challenge before you as a child of the King.  Starting in January of this year I will strategically be taking my group of young women I disciple through a journey of God’s word using the materials written by Iva and Stan May, PhD.

Through the test of time, Iva and Stan have developed the Chronological Bible Teaching materials that many individuals, small groups, and churches are using to bring Bible literacy to God's people.  To better understand this opportunity to journey with thousands of people please go to   Iva will be writing daily on her blog regarding the daily readings for the year 2014 so don't miss out on the opportunity to read her thoughts as she shares more with you about that particular day’s reading.

It is my personal prayer for all of you, and myself, that as children of the Most High King we will be disciplined and steadfast in this challenge to read through His word in the year 2014.  Please take time to go to Iva’s website to read more of what she would say to you in preparing for this journey.  

We, at Pure Joy International, are looking ahead to all that God has in store for our missionary women all over the world in 2014!  We are so excited to see so many of you joining us as God moves on your heart to partner and come alongside us.  Thank you again for your obedience to Him!

Praying for all of you to have an incredible New Year in your walk with our most Gracious Loving Father!  Gear up for the journey and "keep walking"!



Tuesday, December 17, 2013

God is Merciful...

This week we look at the character attribute of God regarding His mercy.  I am so thankful for His mercy towards us as His children.  Before we discuss this attribute, I want to encourage you to look back over the attributes we have looked at thus far;  God is Good, He is Omnipresent (always present),  Omniscient (all knowing), Omnipotent (all powerful), Infinite, Holy, and Faithful.  I pray that you do understand that these attributes of God hold true 100% of the time.

I made the following comment the first week we began to look at the attributes..."We don't trust who we don't know!"  Our ability to grow in our faith is directly relational to our trust in Him being who He says He is! 

Merciful - God is an actively compassionate being.  He acts in a compassionate way toward those who have opposed His will in their pursuit of their own way.

Merriam/Webster Dictionary defines mercy this way....Compassion or forgiveness shown toward someone whom it is within one's power to punish or harm. 

2 Samuel 24:14 (ESV)
Then David said to Gad, “I am in great distress. Let us fall into the hand of the LORD, for his mercy is great; but let me not fall into the hand of man.”

Psalm 145:9 (ESV)
The LORD is good to all, and his mercy is over all that he has made.

Luke 6:35-36 (ESV)
But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return, and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High, for he is kind to the ungrateful and the evil. Be merciful, even as your Father is merciful.

Hebrews 4:16 (ESV)
Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

Exodus 34:6-7 (ESV)
The LORD passed before him and proclaimed, “The LORD, the LORD, a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness

Psalm 116:5 (ESV)
Gracious is the LORD, and righteous; our God is merciful.

Mercy imitates God and disappoints Satan.  (St. John Chrysostom)

Love You All....


Wednesday, December 11, 2013

Important Virus Alert from earlier email

Please accept my apology for an email you may have received titled Hi! from me earlier today. My Gmail account has been hacked. If you clicked on the link in the email and entered your email information please immediately change your email password to safeguard your account. I am so very sorry and had no idea until I began getting messages from many that had received the email.

Again, I apologize and am just as surprised as you are about this! I have been assured by taking the step to change your password you will be safeguarded from the same thing happening to your account.


PS: However, it has been sweet to see some of your names pop up that I haven't seen in a long time.

Vickie Arruda
Pure Joy International



View the document i uploaded for you using Google doc, CLICK HERE. and log in with your email
Best Regards

Vickie Arruda
Pure Joy International


Tuesday, December 10, 2013

God's Faithfulness...

God is always true to His Promises.  He can never draw back from His promises of blessing or of judgment.  Since He cannot lie, He is totally steadfast to what He has spoken. 
Deuteronomy 7:9 (ESV)
Know therefore that the LORD your God is God, the faithful God who keeps covenant and steadfast love with those who love him and keep his commandments, to a thousand generations

Psalm 89:1-5 (ESV)
I will sing of the steadfast love of the LORD, forever; with my mouth I will make known your faithfulness to all generations.  For I said, “Steadfast love will be built up forever; in the heavens you will establish your faithfulness.” You have said, “I have made a covenant with my chosen one; I have sworn to David my servant: ‘I will establish your offspring forever, and build your throne for all generations.’” Selah.  Let the heavens praise your wonders, O LORD, your faithfulness in the assembly of the holy ones!

Lamentations 3:22-24 (ESV)
The steadfast love of the LORD never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. “The LORD is my portion,” says my soul, “therefore I will hope in him.”

1 Corinthians 10:13 (ESV)
No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.

1 Thessalonians 5:23-24 (ESV)
Now may the God of peace himself sanctify you completely, and may your whole spirit and soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ.  He who calls you is faithful; he will surely do it.

I count on this attribute of God's character!  He is Faithful!  He cannot lie! I love that I can trust Him! I may not always like what His word has to say and/or understand it but I can trust that He will be faithful to His promises and all He has said.

Because of my counseling ministry I am very aware that many individuals live their lives disappointed to the point of being embittered because they have been exposed to the unfaithfulness of another.  That could come in the form of a spouse, child, church leader/member, boss, friends, etc.   Yet, God warned us in His Word ....

Psalm 118:8 (ESV)
It is better to take refuge in the LORD than to trust in man.

Isaiah 2:22 (ESV)
Stop regarding man in whose nostrils is breath, for of what account is he?

My precious ones, He is faithful!  There are only two possible choices when it comes to where we place our faith (trust).  We will either have to choose God or man (self/others). Our God is Faithful!  Man, no matter how wonderful that person may be, will eventually let you down somewhere and/or somehow because we are only human. 

Today, if you are harboring bitterness towards someone that has been unfaithful intentionally or unintentionally to you ......please dethrone them.  They are not God.  Then trust God the Faithful One to help you learn how to forgive and let go of the bitterness.  Reconcile if possible and where that is not possible let go and move on.  God has a plan for your life and His kingdom!

Love you all...


Thursday, December 5, 2013

God is Holy...

I wonder how many of you after getting up from the thanksgiving table this past week looked down and found some food or drink on your shirt, pants, or skirt. Maybe another family member pointed it out to you (in love, of course - ha,ha,ha!) I suspect several of us could be included in  this situation. The point is the food, sauce, and/or drink does not belong there and we are usually quick to go about the business of removing the soiled spot if possible because it doesn't belong  there. How quick are we to go about removing other less visible uncleanliness in our lives?

God is Holy and His presence cannot exist in the presence of uncleanliness. When I think of the  Holiness of God, I think of how Isaiah responded in His presence, "Woe is me!"

Isaiah 6:1-5 (ESV)
In the year that King Uzziah died I saw the Lord sitting upon a throne, high and lifted up; and  the train of his robe filled the temple. Above him stood the seraphim. Each had six wings: with two he covered his face, and with two he covered his feet, and with two he flew. And one called to another and said: “Holy, holy, holy is the LORD of hosts; the whole earth is full of his glory!” And the foundations of the thresholds shook at the voice of him who called, and the house was filled with smoke. And I said: “Woe is me! For I am lost; for I am a man of unclean lips, and I dwell in the midst of a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the LORD of hosts!” 

Isaiah was exposed to the absolute Glory and Holiness of God! Wow! I suspect he was dumbfounded, unable to voice a sound. Meanwhile seraphim are calling out to one another: “Holy, Holy, Holy is the LORD of hosts...” I've read that the word 'Holy' is the only character attribute of God that is spoken three consecutive times anywhere in scripture. The scriptures don’t ever say “Love, Love, Love,” Mercy, Mercy, Mercy” or “Faithful, Faithful, Faithful”. His Glory and Holiness set Him apart from and above all things!

Friends, as His children we are to be set apart from the things of this world. When was the last time you humbled yourself before a Holy God and said, "Woe is me!"

Looking ahead ….

For those of you looking at our schedule for next year we are trying to lock in dates and locations for Tanzania, Ghana, and Thailand. Pray with us as we listen to God's direction. We, like Joshua, do not want to go without God because our man-made thinking is to get it on the books. We will wait for His perfect timing. And as we know, His timing is perfect.

Love you all so much,


P.S. A word from Deb Potter, Public Relations Staff Member –

You may have seen articles online or heard a media story about a new way to contribute to nonprofits through Amazon Smile. We are thankful that Amazon has decided to contribute .05 percent of every transaction through its website to a nonprofit of the buyer’s choosing. We want to make our friends aware that there is another organization that utilizes the Pure Joy International name, therefore if you wish to take advantage of this opportunity and want to be certain that Pure Joy International Retreat Ministry will benefit from your purchase be aware of the following. When you select the organization that you would like a donation to be made to, be sure that you select Pure Joy International Retreat Ministry based in Austin, TX. The other organization is based in Bolivar, MO and is not connected to our ministry.

Don’t forget to go to when you are shopping through this Christmas season.