Friday, December 24, 2021


He Came from the Father…

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.

He is the way to the Father…

Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”

He is the gift of eternal life from the Father…

For by grace, you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God.

 He is our Hope…

Therefore, with minds that are alert and fully sober, set your hope on the grace to be brought to you when Jesus Christ is revealed at his coming.

He came, He is the way, He is the gift, and He is our Hope!

We at Pure Joy International Retreat Ministry encourage you this Christmas weekend to remember to take hold of these simple truths and promises from God as foundational for weathering the storms of this world.    

       Merry Christmas and Happy New Year

Pure Joy Staff, Board and Advisors

Monday, December 6, 2021

One Fly…

I suppose that we have all had the experience of having “one fly” buzzing around in our home or office while we are focused on doing something. I do not know about you, but it is amazing to me how quickly that “one fly” can become a “Big” distraction. At first, it is a glance at the fly and you just kind of swish it away and continue with what you were doing. Then there it is again, and you swish it away again, and then again. Now the glance has turned into a gaze, and you start to get a little frustrated. So, you grab something to swat it with, without having to stop what you are doing to find a flyswatter. Of course, most times there is nothing readily available. So, you try to get back to what you were doing. However, that “one fly” just will not give it a rest! Trust me, if you have had this experience, you are fully engaged in my emotions right now. LOL  The result is you end up getting up and going to find a flyswatter, which also, can be a distraction if it is not where it is supposed to be! But now that you have found the flyswatter and your focus had been fully diverted to the fly, it is nowhere to be seen! All of this can take anywhere from 5-10 minutes of your time or more if the lingering effects of not seeing the fly is wearing on you. LOL 

I share this story with you because the enemy (Satan) loves to use distractions in our life’s to effectively draw us away from our intimacy with God. Usually, it is not anything big to start with, but it can be. The enemy uses everyday life, marriage, family, kids, our job, ministry, etc., to distract us from our time with the LORD and get our attention. Once he draws us away, we become prey for the enemy! 

As we go into the rush of Christmas Season with a world already experiencing chaos and full of distractions of all kinds, do not let the enemy lure you away from your intimacy with God. Worship Him, Celebrate His Birth and take every action needed to keep your focus on Him. Bow the knee, stay in the Word, fellowship with other followers of Christ and share the truth and hope of the Gospel with a lost world. 

1 Peter 5:6-9    Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you. Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. Resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brotherhood throughout the world.


His, Vickie

Wednesday, November 24, 2021

We at Pure Joy International Retreat Ministry are thankful for your continual support of this ministry and our desire to continue to minister to our missionary women/families overseas.


Pure Joy International Retreat Ministry Board, Advisors and Staff

Tuesday, October 26, 2021

Kingdom Work...


Last Friday a sister in Christ sent me the following devotional written by Henry Blackaby. It made me think of all the kingdom workers around the world that need to be reminded, “God Cares for You”!

And he said, "I have been very zealous for the LORD God of hosts; because the children of Israel have forsaken Your covenant, torn down Your altars, and killed Your prophets with the sword. I alone am left; and they seek to take my life." 1 Kings 19:14

Kingdom work can be challenging! You can give everything you have to God’s service and come away exhausted. This is what happened to Elijah. God had just used Elijah to call down fire from heaven in a spectacular display of divine power. But Elijah’s exhilaration was soon replaced by strenuous work followed by death threats, causing him to flee for his life. Now he was alone, exhausted, and discouraged.

Again, God came to Elijah. This time, He came not in fire or in a loud, spectacular way, but in a still, small voice. God’s servant was tired, and God brought him comfort. Elijah’s focus had shifted from God to God’s enemies. He had allowed his circumstances to overwhelm him, leaving him disoriented to God and feeling alone. So, God encouraged him. God provided Elisha for him as a helper, friend, and companion.

God removed Elijah from the activity for a time, so that he could rest and spend time with God. When the nation next saw Elijah, he was rejuvenated and refocused on God and His assignment.

If you are overwhelmed by kingdom work so that your focus is no longer on God but on all that there is to do, let Him comfort you. Listen to His gentle voice. He will encourage you and provide exactly what you need to prepare you for what comes next. If He needs to remove you from your work for a time, He will. He may place a friend or co-laborer beside you to help carry the load. God knows exactly how to encourage you. Let Him do so.

What a powerful truth for those that serve around the world for the Glory of God. Stay strong and carry-on!



Thursday, October 7, 2021

Blog Source Changed


Many of you have asked if it is ok to confirm receiving our blog from this source,

The answer is “YES.”  If you want to continue to receive the blog and or want to start receiving the blog to your email address you will want to except.

We recently switched to this blog format known as because our other one shut down. So sorry for the inconvenience and or confusion.


Friday, September 24, 2021

By Their Fruit You Will Know Them…

There is a story told of the burial of a man of rather unsavory character who had never been near a place of worship. The services were being conducted by a minister who had never met the man. Carried away by the occasion the minister poured on praise for the departed man. After ten minutes of listening to the praises poured out for the deceased as a father, husband, and boss, the widow, whose expressions had grown more and more puzzled, nudged her son and whispered, “Go up there and make sure it’s Papa.

Galatians 5:22-23
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. 


Just Saying…



Monday, August 30, 2021

Which Way Does a Tree Fall?

If you have children, grandchildren, nieces, and or nephews there is a good chance you have seen the “LORAX” movie. There is a very powerful quote in the movie from Dr. Seuss.  It goes like this: 

“The Lorax:  Which way does a tree fall.

The Once-ler: Uh, down?

The Lorax:  A tree falls the way it leans.  Be careful which way you lean.”


God very simply puts it this way:  Proverbs 3: 5-8

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths. Be not wise in you're own eyes: fear the LORD and turn away from evil.  It will be healing to your flesh and refreshment to your bones.”

If you have weathered the storms of the past year and a half there is a strong possibility you understand the magnitude of that verse from Proverbs.  Not saying it has been easy and or is easy.  Just saying while the storms may be challenging to you, causing you to feel weary, maybe even defeated at times, you are still standing.  That tells me you have a vertical lean.  You’re not leaning to the left or the right.  Both of which can be guilty of leaning on their own understanding and their own wisdom.

So, maybe take some time to ask yourself “Which way am I leaning?”  And if you realize your life is a little bit in shambles and overwhelming to the point of questioning whether you can really make it through these storms:

 Lean into HIM …”it will be healing to your flesh and a refreshment to your bones.”






Saturday, April 17, 2021

Fine Tune Me LORD…


I think I can safely assume that most of us reading this blog have had the opportunity to hear an out of tune instrument of some kind during our lifetime.  It is one thing to hear it when you or someone is learning to play the instrument.  We are much more gracious with them.  It is another thing for you and or me to hear it when listening to a recital, orchestra, band, etc.  We are much less gracious because our expectation is different.

Did you know that a person can be playing all the right keys but if the instrument is not tuned right, it will not matter?  We will still hear that note either in a pitch higher or lower than it should be in keeping with the melody of the music.

The Webster defines “fine-tuned”; to adjust precisely to bring to the highest level of performance or effectiveness.  Sometimes you will hear a judge in some of the TV shows such as The Voice, American Idol, America’s Got Talent, etc., say to a contestant, “You were a little pitchy”.  Meaning they sang that note higher or lower than it was meant to be sung.

When an instrument is out of tune just a little it will clash with others playing the same note.  Tuning an instrument is especially important for two key reasons: 

1.     For the instrument to be in tune with itself, and

2.     For the instrument to be in tune with others.

Oh, the depths of spiritual parallels that can jump off this page right now.  However, let us just keep it simple for my sake. Ha, ha, ha   So, let me start by asking us to answer a few questions.

·       Are you out of tune, spiritually speaking?  Are you right with God, His Word, and His ways? Allowing the spirit of God to work in you and through you.  Or are you living life in the flesh?  Doing it your way.

·       Are you clashing with others you are doing life with? At home with spouse and children, at church, at work, in ministry, etc.  If we are clashing with people on all fronts, then is it us or them that is out of tune?

When we are yielded to the LORD, His spirit is quick to let us know when we step out of pitch.   God knows this side of heaven we are not ever going to be perfect as human beings, but we are perfect in Christ and are being perfected. 

I believe He wants to adjust us precisely to bring about His best in and through us as we grow to become more and more effective for His kingdom work and His Glory!  


Philippians 1:6 (AMP) I am convinced and confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will [continue to] perfect and complete it until the day of Christ Jesus [the time of His return].

Do you trust Him to fine tune you?  I have said this many a time and I will always continue to say and believe it, “God is a Gentleman,” He will not strong-arm you, manipulate you, and or force you but He does hear the cry of our hearts whatever it might be.

Would you dare say these words to Him and mean it?  “Fine Tune me” LORD, I am willing.




Special note to Missionary women:  I am continuing to contact you as schedule allows.  Don’t give up on hearing from me. 


Saturday, April 3, 2021



As we gather as brothers and sisters here at home and to the ends of the earth this Easter Weekend, celebrating the resurrection of Christ, I am mindful of two things Christ accomplished that changes our lives for eternity!  (1) The Cross – He took our sin, shame, and the wrath of God upon Himself.  (2) The Resurrection - He defeated death. 

 This morning in my prayer time I believe the Holy Spirit put this old but powerful hymn on my heart.  “Because He Lives”.   I want to close out the blog by simply putting the words here for us to truly look at and meditate on.


God sent His Son, they called Him Jesus

He came to love, heal, and forgive.

He lived and died to buy my pardon.

An empty grave is there to prove my Savior lives.


Because He lives, I can face tomorrow.

Because He lives, all fear is gone.

Because I know He hold the future.

And life is worth the living, just because He lives.


How sweet to hold a newborn baby.

And feel the pride and joy he gives.

But greater still the calm assurance.

This child can face uncertain days because He lives.


Because He lives, I can face tomorrow.

Because He lives, all fear is gone.

Because I know He holds the future.

And life is worth the living, just because He lives.


And then one day, I’ll cross the river.

I’ll fight life’s final war with pain.

And then, as death gives way to victory.

I’ll see the lights of glory and I’ll know He reigns.


Because He lives, I can face tomorrow.

Because He lives, all fear is gone.

Because I know He holds the future.

And life is worth the living, just because He lives.

                                                      Because He Lives

                       We Can Face Tomorrow!


Thursday, March 18, 2021


I suppose there is not very many of us that have not had the experience of trying to wake someone up out of a deep sleep whether it is for work, school, important event, etc.  The common denominator here is urgency! Usually, it is because we do not want them to miss wherever it is, they are supposed to be.

I do not know about you, but I do not want anyone to miss “heaven”.  Therefore, I am not calling on lost people to” WAKE UP”, I am calling on us the church, the family of God to “WAKE UP”. 

I love the quote in the picture above.  “God isn’t going to rewrite the Bible just for your generation.  His word remains the same forever and always.”  Also, translated, yesterday, today, and tomorrow.

So, let us be honest with one another if you proclaim to believe God’s Word is infallible.  There is a lot of righteous anger you are experiencing regarding the absolute evil and wickedness that is abounding in our society and world today.  You are not angry of over the “grey” areas of scripture.  You are angry over the red, black, and white areas of scripture that are being violated in our society today.  Me too.

When Jesus ran the money changers out of the temple, He was expressing a righteous anger.  They were making a mockery of God’s house of prayer.   Today, we live in a society that makes a mockery of Gods creation of male and female, His plan for marriage and family, etc. 

You want to overcome the darkness abounding in the world right now?  Then light up!  Ground yourself in His Word, yield to His Holy Spirit, and believe everything JESUS CHRIST accomplished on the cross at calvary and resurrection day!!  He delivered you from the wrath of God, out of the darkness, forgave your sins past, present, and future.  Bore your shame!  He came to dwell in you through the person of the Holy Spirit.  The Holy Spirit that guides us into all truth, leads us in the way we should go, convicts us of our sin, helps us exercise our spiritual gifts (Christ in us and through us) and much more!

Wake Up!  Wake Up!  The spiritual battle is on!  The enemy comes to steal, kill, and destroy.  We see it in our relationship with God, in our marriages, in our families, in our children’s lives.  Wake Up Church!  Wake Up! 

Light up!  How?  By abiding in Him the source of all light!  Light dispels darkness, always!!!

Speak truth in love but do speak truth!  Why speak truth and why stand for it?

Romans 10:14 (Amplified)

But how will people call on Him whom they have not believed?  And how will they believe in Him of whom they have not heard?  And how will they hear without a preacher (messenger)?

If the last year has taught us anything it is...People Need The LORD!!!

Pure Joy International Update...

I am continuing to talk with many of you weekly that responded to our letter sent out to missionaries last month.  It is a process, and I will get to everyone.  Check your spam and trash if you did not receive anything from us let me know by contacting me at

I am having a so much fun catching up with all of you and hearing your stories.  Also, I love that you are as excited as we are about what God has put on our hearts.  Keep praying for us in the details.

To all our supporters through prayer, going and giving, please keep praying and keep giving!  God is at work.  And for those of you that feel called to travel with us, we are looking towards the spring of 2022 as our nearest possibility. 


Have a great weekend…

Love you all,






Friday, February 26, 2021

Great Week…


I cannot believe these words are coming out of my mouth it has been so long!!  But It has been a good week to have a great week!  And that has happened because I have spent most of my week visiting with missionary women overseas!  Recently, our ministry sent out an email to missionary women that have attended our conferences overseas in the past.  You were asked to contact me so I could share with you some ways we believe God is leading us to minister to you on the field even though we are not able to travel for now.  The response has been awesome.  In fact, if you have emailed me already please be patient with me as I am scheduling days and times to visit with each one of you individually.   That is what has made for such a great week!  I have seen faces and heard voices from the past 20 years along with several new ones.   It has been exciting to visit with so many of you from our ‘people group’.  The emails you have sent sharing about your hearts towards Pure Joy International Retreat Ministry and your stories of what is happening where you are right now are so impactful.

Many of you are in second and third lockdowns because of Covid-19.  And for those that are not locked down there is the inability to cross providence lines, country boarders, etc.  It is all so crazy!   So, if you did not get the email sent to missionaries please check your spam and or let me know and I will get with you.  But be patient with me. There are a lot of you and one of me.  (smile).

 Along, with the great week there have also been some tough spots in the road that happen for all of us as we are molded and shaped into his image.  But as God is good to always give us what we need at just the right time I came across this quote in a daily reading. 

“God has brought you through before, and He will bring you through again.  Make a decision each day, to choose faith over fear.”

I suspect there are many of us that need to be reminded of that truth. 

·       Those overseas in lockdowns and

·       Those here in the U.S. that have been severely hit by the recent winter storms in the southern part of the U.S.

·       Those of you just going through life and hitting some tough spots in the road.

 The list could go on and on.  Remember, choose Faith!


Have a good weekend.





Wednesday, February 10, 2021

Paying It Forward…

Jon and Phyllis Moore are long time friends of mine.  I met Phyllis when I started traveling with Great Hills Baptist Retreat Ministry out of Austin, Tx. 

Barbara O’Chester Founder of Great Hills Baptist Retreat Ministry usually allowed Phyllis and I to room together.  We both liked to get up early and do our quite times, so we made good roomies.  By the way we were anything but quite during those times because we liked sharing with each other the things the LORD was showing us.  She and Jon have since been lifelong friends to me. 


Recently I received the following email from Jon.  Jon is good to take time to encourage others that serve in ministry.   I wanted to share it with you because; (1) it gives you a link to their ministry and because it also gives you a way to connect with Jon to capitalize on the quotes that are meaty along the way.  I have never known Jon to just throw you a bone.  The meat always comes with it!  Phyllis will be no disappointment to us ladies as well.  So, contact them if you would like to be encouraged by the depths of older saints.  I will leave one of my favorites from this past week at the bottom with my sign off.  It is from A.W. Tozer.  I am quite sure he was supposed to be my husband but died 10 years after I was born.  Ha,ha,ha.


“Hello everyone,

 We trust you are all staying well during these hopefully last months of COVID-19 pandemic!  We personally received our first vaccine shot last week.  As our opportunities for ministry

(as we have always known them) decline, I want to point out two avenues we maintain.  First, we alternate in writing devotionals each month for our web site.  Be sure to click on and read Jon’s devotional for this month, “Praying for Revival!”

 Secondly, every couple of weeks or so, I (Jon) send out quotes by notable Believers from the past that deal with revival and related subjects.  If you do not currently receive those quotes and would like to receive them, let me know by return email.  IN the meantime, keep on believing the Lord for a God-sized miracle, and keep on praying to that end…

 Multiplied blessings,

Jon & Phyllis Moore”


May I encourage you to take advantage of the wisdom of the older saints.  I have received some wise counsel from my friends through the years.




“The one who has struggled to purify himself and has had nothing , but repeated failures will experience real relief when he stops tinkering with his soul and looks away to the perfect One.                 A.W. Tozer

          Are you tinkering with your soul?


Tuesday, February 2, 2021


I am sure we can all remember a time when we have found ourselves in darkness unexpectedly.  That happens to us several times throughout the year.  It happens if the weather is bad, someone hits a utility pole, and or my personal favorite the squirrel that gets caught in the power grid and knocks out the electricity on one whole side of town. If that happens in the daytime not so big a deal regarding light.  But at night when you are suddenly cast unexpectantly into the darkness, not so good.  It is a strange feeling for a moment.  Your brain goes to total overload for just a fraction of a second trying to process, no light, what happen, which gives way to a momentary flinch of fear.  Then you snap out of it. Find your flashlight, candles, lanterns, etc. Then you call the Entergy Company to find out what happened and when you can expect it to be fixed.

Today, it is easy to feel overwhelmed with the darkness of this world. And it will not do you any good to call the electric company to find out what happened and when you can expect it be fixed.  Because it is a darkness brought on by evil.  Evil are those things that stand in opposition to Gods Word, Truths, Ways, Will, Commands, etc.

But rejoice my dear friends because Gods Word has given us the tool’s we need to weather the darkness of this present world.  Here are just a couple of powerful verses to hold onto and believe!

Psalm 27:1 (ESV) The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? The LORD is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?

Psalm 18:28-30 (ESV) For it is you who light my lamp; the LORD my God lightens my darkness. For by you I can run against a troop, and by my God I can leap over a wall. This God—his way is perfect; the word of the LORD proves true; he is a shield for all those who take refuge in him.

So, the next time the darkness is pressing in on you remember; He is your light and your salvation!






Wednesday, January 20, 2021

Warning Misdirection…


Great magicians perfect two intentional arts that set them apart from other magicians.  The first is the art of misdirection, getting the audience’s attention to focus on an unimportant object or action so nobody notices the important movements happening right before their eyes.  The second is the sly physical manipulation of objects with imperceptible movement, commonly known as sleight of hand.

On Wednesday afternoon January 6, 2021 my sister asked me, “have you seen the news?”  So, I clicked on the news.  Our White House in Washington D.C. was being swarmed.  I seriously could not believe what I was seeing and hearing.  People scaling the walls of the White House, news that a woman had been shot that later died, people vandalizing offices, stealing objects and as I write this today five more died from that day.  But the most serious thing that came to my mind was the epitome of the state of lawlessness of our country symbolized by the disrespect shown to the White House as it was breached.  No matter where your loyalty in politics fall, that was a sad day for our country. 

As I watch all the anger, blame, destruction, and chaos I see the craftiness of the enemy.  Like a great magician creating misdirection, and sleight of hand.  Making sure in the physical that all eyes are drawn to the chaos daily through the media.  Which allows him to continue his path which is to kill, steal, and destroy (see John 10:10).

These things going on in our nation are things we used to see on the evening news regarding foreign nations and would never have believed it would be our nation someday. And yet, here we are.  And you know what?  Many of our missionaries/missionary families serve in foreign countries that live with this type of instability most of the time.

How do they handle it?  Well, they are not perfect by any means.  And they do go through their own times of struggles.  However, their ability to handle it is no different than yours or mine as a believer, it lies in our trust or lack of trust in the Father and His Word.  

 His Word tells us ….

2 Timothy 3:1-5 (ESV)  

But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty. For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power. Avoid such people.

My friends we are in the last days. The enemy wants you to believe this is something new.  No!  It is misdirection!  The truth is those last days started over 2000 years ago when Jesus was crucified for our sins, was buried, rose again, and ascended to the Father.  And things have steadily become more difficult throughout the ages.  Read that passage again.  Why have the times of difficulty come? Because people will be lovers of self, etc.  Notice that verse started out with lovers of self.  Everything else becomes a consequence of that behavior.

 His Word tells us….

Ephesians 6:12 (ESV)

For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.

Have you taken a good look around you lately regarding marriages, families, and specifically at all the finger pointing that has gone on at every level of human existence? The enemy wants you to fight horizontally.  So, you only see through your eyes or the eyes of the distortion of this world.  It is his sleight of hand movement manipulating people through their differences, using the media (one of his greatest tools), encouraging people to turn on one another instead of being able to agree to disagree on the issues. 

Please understand that your spouse, children, family, friends, peers, etc., are not the enemy!  Do not be deceived!!  This is a “spiritual battle” we are in.  You must fight from a vertical position. 

His Word tells us…

Psalm 33:13 (ESV)The LORD looks down from heaven; he sees all the children of man…

 Proverbs 5:21 (ESV)For a man’s ways are before the eyes of the LORD, and he ponders all his paths.

Psalm 18:6 (ESV)In my distress I called upon the LORD; to my God I cried for help. From his temple he heard my voice, and my cry to him reached his ears.

Our God sees! He hears!!  Do not be deceived into thinking He does not know what is happening in your life with all the things going on in this world and that He does not care.

Those are lies from the enemy! While we may get tripped up by the misdirection and sleight of hand, He does not!  But may I encourage you to me more mindful of what is going on in the Middle East and Western Europe while keeping your focus on God! The enemy would have you be ignorant of those areas.  And remember…

He is a God that cares for you and a God that will lead you through.  So, look up as we journey through these days of trouble and trials.

Isaiah 26:3-4 (ESV) You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you. Trust in the LORD forever, for the LORD GOD is an everlasting rock.