Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Oxygen Please.....

If you have been keeping up with Pure Joy this past year you will remember we went to Southeast Asia in September 2016 and then headed to Mexico in November 2016 which was a tight turn around for our ministry staff that travel on most trips including myself. We immediately went into the Thanksgiving and Christmas Holidays before stepping into the New Year of 2017. Two weekends ago we had our Annual Board Retreat that many of you prayed for and we are now just a little over two weeks from leaving the country to head to Athens, Greece, to do a conference there. Several of you reading this will be attending. Some of you reading this are already saying, ‘breathe’. But can I ask you something? Are you breathing?  

One of our speakers in Southeast Asia reminded us of the warning that is given on airplanes as they are taking off:

 “In case of emergency, air masks will drop from the ceiling. If you are traveling with a minor, please put on your own mask before helping the minor.”

In 2007 Randy Pausch is quoted as saying, “Put on your own oxygen mask before assisting others”. The whole premise behind the warning and the quote are simply if you don’t take care of yourself you are not going to be much use to anyone else in the long run. 

If you are thinking, “Is Vickie preaching to herself?” Yes. But, through God’s grace I have come to my senses before all the brain cells die! Ha,ha,ha,ha,ha,ha  

I suppose I want to encourage you to do the same. Stop, breathe, catch a breath and then step out as He leads. And make a plan for yourself to get oxygen! Then have someone hold you accountable so you actually do it! Leslie, if you’re reading this I know you will be ringing my phone the week of February 27, 2017.

Athens, Greece
We are on our last lap before leaving the country to head to our conference in Athens Greece. Registration closed today (Tuesday) with the conference being full and having a waiting list if anyone should cancel.   

The team is in final preparations and detail mode as messages, devotionals, worship, hospitality, and media videos are prepared. Pray for us as the team is already experiencing the spiritual warfare that takes place the last couple of weeks before we leave for these trips. Also, pray for the women that will be coming because the enemy will do everything in his power to try and prevent these ladies that are registered from coming to the well, to drink and be refreshed.

Love you all and appreciate your hearts for the ministry and all you do!


Tuesday, January 24, 2017

4 Weeks and Off to Athens.....

As we continue our preparations for Athens please continue to pray for us. We have 9 spots left and deadline for registration is January 31, 2017.

Also, the team is getting more and more excited. One of our ladies shared the following email with us this morning (Tuesday). Yes, she is leading our worship team if you don’t pick up on it. ha,ha,ha It gives my heart great “joy” to see our team excited and encouraging one another. It also, give me great “joy” to watch them prepare their hearts before the LORD. Enjoy her heart for our LORD....


After sharing a day of worship preparation and prayer with Jesus, I literally could not sleep last night. Songs kept dancing thru my head and my heart just about exploded with excitement … the reality of being with you and our missionaries in Greece just set in!!

Wanted to share a verse with you. The day after our first prayer time with Vic, I was asking the Lord to confirm completely in my heart my place on this team. I knew Jerry supported it but I was still just a little hesitant. I mean, come on. Greece? I wanted a pure heart, pure motives. I wanted it to be completely HIS call to go.

The next morning in my devo time, He gives me this:
One day spent in Your house, this beautiful house of worship, beats 1000s spent on GREEK island beaches. I’d rather scrub floors in the house of my God then be honored as a guest in the palace of sin. – Psalm 84:10-11

I laughed out loud with Jesus. I could go anywhere on this planet and no matter how breathtaking the view might be, it will NEVER even come close to what I have in my Savior. Oh, the freedom and joy of walking in the presence of HIM! May our joy in Him overflow on each other and these women attending the retreat!

I’m praying FOR YOU as you prepare to lead and minister. Our theme has penetrated my own heart and taken me to my knees daily. Repentance and brokenness are crucial for us as we lead. We must “consider OUR ways.” Create in us clean hearts, Father. Renew a right spirit in us.

THIS song is one the Lord keeps pointing me to. Wanted to share. Surrender, by Hillsong:

Be blessed, sweet sisters. God is stirring and I don’t want to miss a moment! See you soon!

Grace and Peace,

Take time to listen to the song if you have never heard it. You will love it!!


Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Update on Central Europe Coming up...

What a great way to get to start our New Year by telling you that all the missionaries for our Central Europe trip have been sponsored. We are praising God for His goodness and your donations. In fact, we received such a generous donation at the very end of the year that we could go ahead and pay it forward to 13 more missionary women for the next retreat in Fall of 2017. There are no words to express how Amazing God is and to be able to watch His people allowing Him to work through them to accomplish His good will and purpose. Thank you to all of you that consistently partner with Pure Joy International through prayer, giving and gifting and going. 

The team is full and busy with all the preparations that take place before we leave the country. Speaking of which we are only 5 weeks out from stepping on the plane. Wow! Pray for us that all details will be taken care of and we don’t miss anything. Our theme for this trip is “Consider your ways” from Haggai 1:7.

I also want to give a salute out to a friend that literally prays for this ministry staff, teams and myself throughout the year daily and yes, I did say daily. At the end of each year she sends me a sweet card of encouragement and inside it is an index card filled with the days she prayed for us. Thank you, Donna Rychilk, that you, along with so many, are standing in the gap for Pure Joy International as we minister to our missionaries in foreign lands that need rest and encouragement. Also, thank you to so many others that I know pray for this ministry by name weekly. You are such a blessing to us.

This month we will be having our Annual Pure Joy International Board, Staff and Advisors meeting up on what we have lovingly named God’s Mountain. Again, God’s goodness that a local family allows us to have their beautiful log cabin getaway home for three days and 2 nights to review our year and seek God for the coming year. Please pray for us as we meet. As you know things around the world continue to get more and more difficult for our fellow believers that are serving Him across the seas. Christians are routinely attacked and killed for the sake of their beliefs daily. As bombings occur more frequently these days and stand to increase in the future we need to be wise about where we go and when. Pray God will continue to give us discernment as to where to go, the timing to be there and the resources to always serve Him with excellence for His Glory.

May this year be the year that many of our family and friends along with a lost world find the Joy of knowing Christ as their personal Lord and Savior.
One of our prayer partners and friend that I was telling you about earlier claimed this verse for me in 2016. I am claiming it as my verse for the year 2017 personally and for the Ministry of Pure Joy International. Please join me in standing on this truth of scripture this year.

Jeremiah 32:17 (ESV)
17  ‘Ah, Lord GOD! It is you who have made the heavens and the earth by your great power and by your outstretched arm! Nothing is too hard for you.

Love you all and looking forward to what He is up to through all of us that have a heart for the ministry of Pure Joy International.