“The February sunshine steeps your boughs and tints the buds and swells the leaves within.”
William C. Bryant
I haven’t taken that many notes in church in a long time. Sometimes there is just a message at church that just smacks you right in the face and leaves you encouraged and challenged. For me that was a recent message on Stewardship. My church spent the month of January in a sermon that my pastor was calling “Money: The reasons God cares about yours”. Money is often a challenging topic to talk about in church; no one likes to be told how to spend their hard earned money! The message on stewardship focused on the reasons why God asks us to give and tithe: it all comes from Him, it’s not really ours anyway. The principle of stewardship doesn’t only apply to our monetary wealth but to many other areas in which the Lord has blessed us and this is just what I needed to hear. “For most people, the word ‘stewardship’ makes them think of money and that’s fine because it has a lot to do with money. But, stewardship isn’t just about money—it’s about everything: time and talent and treasure. It’s about your health, your gifts, your skills, your home, your family, your car, your job, your hobbies, your creativity, your sharp mind, and your strong back. James says it: “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of heavenly lights…” (1:17). Every bit of everything that you have and properly enjoy is from Him… God is the Source of all that we have in our lives—whether great or small. Your time. Your talent. Your treasure. He’s the Source of all of it and He’s chosen to put you in charge of it. I am not an owner. I am a steward of all that God has put before me. I have been appointed to manage His stuff!” Phil Christiansen; COTF. Isn’t that just freeing friends? Everything belongs to God! I don’t have to stress about gaining anything I just have to do my best to use what God has given me to the best of my ability! I could quote this sermon all day because it impacted me so deeply. As a housewife I don’t work and I don’t earn money to give back to God but He as given me other things that I can use, that I can steward well, for His glory! Pastor Phil also said: “If you have a knack for making money, then make all you can and honor God with it. If God has given you a sharp mind, then use it for His glory. The gifts and talents you possess, like the ones listed in Romans 12 & 1 Corinthians 12, use them to build the Body of Christ and invest them in the Kingdom. Our abilities, including the ability to earn, are God-given. The question is: how will we steward those abilities?” Everything I have, everything I can do is from God. He has given me time and talent that I can use to honor Him. He has given my husband the ability to work and make money to provide for our family, how can we be the best stewards of that? Like the Parable of the Talents found in Matthew 25:14-30 (read it here), I don’t want to bury my treasure in the ground! I want to use what God has given to me, I want to put it to work! I am blessed to say God has given me a talent for music and I am even more blessed to say that God has already led me into using that gift for His glory! I can also say God has blessed me with time, way too much of it and I feel his call to put that work as well. To serve in a ministry, to bless friends or family who need help, to use my time to bless my husband. I’m not exactly sure what God has in mind for my time but I recognize His calling on my heart in this area and I am praying that He will reveal his plan for this part of my life that he has given to me. I love this sermon so much that I am not only going to link it here but I am also going to embed it below:
I hope you find time in your day to listen to this sermon and be encouraged and recognize the “Time, Talent and Treasure” that God has given you to manage.
P.S. Happy February! The month of “love” as some see it. Regardless if you have a significant other in your life, celebrate this month of Love, for Christ first loved you!
• • •
The last month has gone great in the guild. If you haven’t been into the Guild Hall recently I encourage you to check it out! Edhalreth has done an amazing job in decorating and creating another wonderful jumping puzzle for us all to enjoy! Thank you to her and all the scribes that have been making wonderful decorations for us! Edhalreth still has many new decorating ideas in mind and is in need of a few things to make it happen. If you feel called to help us out in terms of materials for decorations you can put the following items in the guild bank: Dust of any tier (though luminescent or radiant would be most helpful), Flaxseed or Linseed Oil, Pigment of any color (I find brown, yellow, orange, and blue are used often), Potatoes with which to craft brown dye to salvage into pigment, Piles of coarse sand, Seasoned wood logs (or any T1-4 wood), Coarse leather sections, Lamp finials, Glacial shards and glacial fragments, Molten shards and fragments, Onxy shards, Auric crown. This is totally voluntary but we do appreciate anything that you can do to help. If you don’t have mats to spare but do want to help in another way you can help with gold donations. Any gold donations can be placed in the Guild Bank, first tab, and will be used for guild decorations and blessing guild members in need. Thank you in advance for any help you can give us in these areas!
This is more of a personal ambition that I want to share with others. I have been enjoying and playing a lot more WvW recently. I know a bunch of you enjoy WvW or try to do it for the dailies and want/need others to help you out. If anyone is on Fort Aspenwood or our linked server (which changes) and you are interested in WvW let me know! I run pretty randomly but I would love to get some more Saltines with me if you are interested!
Be sure to check the facebook page and group for reminders of weekly events! TBDT has been happening regularly as have our Fractals, Family Gaming and Guild mission events. These are a fun way to connect and fellowship with members of the guild. The best way to get to know each other is by hanging out together, so I hope you will consider joining us for some of our events.
Finally, if you enjoy the songs from the newsletters I have put them all in a playlist linked to our Guild email address. I will be adding songs from future newsletters as well. If you would like to check that out and listen to those songs again, or on repeat all day like I do, you can find it here.
Well that’s all from me for now. I pray you guys have a blessed month. Keep our Guild in your prayers, that we can have God led fellowship together and that we can be a light shining in the GW2 community!
God bless you my friends,
(Vasshti, Guild Leader)
“To Him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen.” 1 Peter 4:11
• New Saltines •
Cerritus Animus; Saevus Animus; Tourettes Tuna; Kilga; genesis; Meatballsub; Crusader for Christ; vanRijn; Jared; Northlander; Tinkerbell Babe; Nicknow; rainymarcelo.
Be sure to give a warm Salty welcome if you see these new Saltines in-game
• February Verse of the Month •
1 Thessalonians 2:17-20, 3:1-13
“But, brothers, when we were torn away from you for a short time (in person, not in thought), out of our intense longing we made every effort to see you. For we wanted to come to you—certainly I, Paul, did, again and again—but Satan stopped us. For what is our hope, our joy, or the crown in which we will glory in the presence of our Lord Jesus when he comes? Is it not you? Indeed, you are our glory and joy.
So when we could stand it no longer, we thought it best to be left by ourselves in Athens. We sent Timothy, who is our brother and God’s fellow worker in spreading the gospel of Christ, to strengthen and encourage you in your faith, so that no one would be unsettled by these trials. You know quite well that we were destined for them. In fact, when we were with you, we kept telling you that we would be persecuted. And it turned out that way, as you well know. For this reason, when I could stand it no longer, I sent to find out about your faith. I was afraid that in some way the tempter might have tempted you and our efforts might have been useless.
But Timothy has just now come to us from you and has brought good news about your faith and love. He has told us that you always have pleasant memories of us and you long to see us, just as we also long to see you. Therefore, brothers, in all our distress and persecution we were encouraged about you because of your faith. For now we really live, since you are standing firm in the Lord. How can we thank God enough for you in return for all the joy we have in the presence of our God because of you? Night and day we pray most earnestly that we may see you again and supply what is lacking in your faith.
Now may our God and Father himself and our Lord Jesus clear the way for us to come to you. May the Lord make your love increase and overflow for each other and for everyone else, just as ours does for you. May he strengthen your hearts so that you will be blameless and holy in the presence of our God and Father when our Lord Jesus comes with all his holy ones.”
• February Song of the Month •
• February Recipe of the Month •
Roasted Herbed Red Potatoes
– 3 Pounds red potatoes, washed and halved (quartered if potatoes are on the medium/large side)
– 3 Tablespoons olive oil
– 6 Cloves of garlic, minced
– 1 teaspoon salt
– 1 teaspoon dried thyme
– ½ teaspoon black pepper
– ½ teaspoon dried oregano
– ½ teaspoon dried basil
– ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese
– 3 Tablespoons fresh parsley, finely chopped
1. Preheat the oven to 400ºF. Grease a large baking sheet with non-stick spray or olive oil. Set aside.
2. In a large bowl, toss together all of the ingredients except the parsley until potatoes are evenly coated. Pour coated potatoes onto prepared baking sheet, spreading them out as evenly as possible. Bake for 45-55 minutes, turning every 15 minutes with a spatula, until browned and crisp. Sprinkle with fresh parsley before serving. Potatoes are best served immediately, but will stay fresh in an airtight container in the refrigerator up to 3 days. Reheat in the microwave as needed, or reheat on baking sheet or large casserole dish, covered, in a 300ºF oven for 10-15 minutes or until heated through.
Found and deliciously tested by Vasshti from the blog fresh april flours
Vasshti’s tips: These are incredibly delicious and super super easy to make! My new favorite side dish! I usually make a half batch and that is more than enough for the hubby and I. I usually sprinkle about 1 Tablespoon dried parsley to the bowl with all the other ingredients, so I don’t have to use fresh. Enjoy!
• February Tip of the Month •
Did you know that the Guild has a number of FREE guild enhancements in the Guild Hall? From the spawn Waypoint go South into the Tavern and find Nathan the Bartender [Guild Enchancements]. He has a 20% Crafting Boost, 10% Map Bonus Rate, 20% Gathering Boost, 10% Karma Boost, 10% Magic Find Boost, 10% XP Gain, 10% PvP Reward Track Gain, 10% WvW XP Gain, and a 10% WvW Reward Track boost. All of these boosts are totally free and last for 24 hours! You can only have one active at a time but you can switch them out at any time! Come find Nathan the Bartender for your free boosts today!
“You are the salt of the earth. But if the salt loses its saltiness, how can it be made salty again? It is no longer good for anything, except to be thrown out and trampled by men. You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.”