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New Logo

Hi Friends,

This is the logo for UTBW.BLOG.

The story behind the logo…

My sister asked me, “What is ugly on the outside but beautiful on the inside?”

I rather quickly responded, “A geode.” Now, it’s not that a geode is ugly on the outside but rather that it is plain and very much a disguise for the level of intricate beauty on the inside. So I knew a geode had to be part of the logo indeed.

Then I thought about who we are as Christians, truly. Just like our Savior and Older Brother, Jesus Christ, we are either called to be lions or lionesses. That is our true identity that needs to be revealed over time and through the leading of the Holy Spirit.

So you see in the image, a lioness who shows markings, scars or lines as she is bursting forth in her beauty and being less contained and restrained in a misleadingly outwardly plain shroud.

I am still very deep in the development phase of the various items that will be offered through the website including my books.

If you are a servant of Jesus Christ, please continue to pray with me for wisdom, guidance, direction and divine connections. God is up to something big. This whole ministry is His for whatever purposes He defines, in whatever way and at whatever pace He chooses and sets.

Blessings of God on you today.

Kristiann

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True Intimacy

Google search brings up the following:

in·ti·ma·cy
noun
close familiarity or friendship; closeness or a private cozy atmosphere

I don’t mind sharing that I’ve been married twice and frankly never experienced intimacy with either husband. Certainly people use the word intimacy euphemistically for sexual acts and that is not to what I am referring. I am referring to a true closeness between the core of who you are and the core of who another person is.

I have been privileged and continue to be so, in that I have intimate enduring friendships, some going back over 20 years now. But I’ve really been dancing with this whole concept of intimacy lately.

What does intimacy with the Lord look like? Maybe you, like I, have been hearing the sexual euphemism for so long that is prevalent in the American culture, that the idea of intimacy with the Lord sounds strange. But recently, the Lord revealed to me that without true intimacy with Him, we can never know true intimacy with a lifelong spouse.

Truly falling in love with our First Love and maintaining that, as our first priority, is the only way to fulfillment. Only then, can the true door to intimacy on all levels be opened to us in human relationships….

But I have this [one charge to make] against you: that you have left (abandoned) the love that you had at first [you have deserted Me, your first love]. Remember then from what heights you have fallen. Repent (change the inner man to meet God’s will) and do the works you did previously [when first you knew the Lord], or else I will visit you and remove your lampstand from its place, unless you change your mind and repent.
Revelation 2:4‭-‬5 AMPC
https://bible.com/bible/8/rev.2.4-5.AMPC

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What’s in Your Mouth?

I work in a secular setting where I don’t have the breadth of freedom I wish I had to say all of the things that are so important to people’s souls. Certainly, the Lord has opened doors over the years and I am very thankful to Him for so doing.

But as I contemplate the Christian Life and our purpose, it leads me to ask what is in the mouth of the believer. I am noticing a divergence within the church. I think it’s important here to remind us of the scripture that says a house divided against itself will not stand. It is also important to remember that Jesus said if we deny Him before man He will deny us before His Father in Heaven.

I don’t know if it’s a trend but I suspect so. What am I talking about? I am talking about us trying to be so palatable to the world and so ingratiating that we blend in. We are a set apart people, the Word says. It says we are the salt and the light here on Earth and that a city set on a hill cannot be hidden. It also says if the salt loses its savor it is good for nothing but to be trampled under foot.

I find that some parts of the body are allowing Satan to come in full force. There is a shying away from words like Christian, holiness, Bible and even church. The Bible says come out from among them and be ye separate. If you have what I have and I’m not doing well, I will not seek you out for help because you’re in just as bad of shape as I am. But if you have something different, something extraordinary that is drawing me to you because I know in some way you will point me to the right answer, I will come running to you.

In the business world I’ve been told to dumb myself down. In my personal life I’ve been told the same. In the church world I’ve been told to not be so bold because I might frighten away those that are not yet believers.

But the Lord is speaking to me greatly about my identity, knowing who I am and coming out from the herd or the crowd. I really have to go the way of the ministers that are boldly declaring the new things that God is doing, which are in alignment with the principles of who He has shown us He always has been and always will be in His Word. In fact, He tells us in His Word He is doing a new thing and asks us whether or not we are perceiving it.

One such minister speaks about God calling him to be a forerunner and how it’s a very lonely and unenviable position in many cases. That reminds me of the Apostle Paul and the disciples that Jesus called, who worked alongside of Him and really were emboldened in a fresh way after His Ascension.

I am discontented and troubled within my spirit as I compose this. I am really coming to the point of realization that just as Jesus offended so many of the religious persons of His day and I am called to resemble Him, His warning is so correct that if they hated Him they will hate me too. And I am getting so comfortable with that idea.

The terrifically sad part of that to me however, is that there is a division that is going to be magnified in the church as there are both wheat and tare growing up together not just outside of the church walls but within them. Now of course I understand the church is not a building but I say it that way to draw a distinction between those that are truly a part of the church, the body of Christ, versus those that suit up, show up and do not know Him or even those that ultimately will walk away from a once held faith in Jesus..

Listen, it’s been said that you’ve got to stand for something or you will fall for anything. We are in a day and age of great wickedness and turmoil where those claiming to be Christians who are very well-known are judging and making statements completely antithetical to the Word of God, the Bible. Whose side are you on? Today is the day of salvation, God told us in His Word. We are not promised tomorrow nor even a breath in the next moment.

Right is right, not relative. Please contemplate that and ask God to speak to you and embolden you each and every day to speak what He would have you to speak even in the face of friends, family and enemies.

May you perceive God’s blessings today.

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Vision Obscured

He saw her the way God does. She saw him the way God does. Hopes, dreams, aspirations…

But, he never saw himself the way God does. And she never saw herself the way God does. So, there were years of pain and heartache, wanting to walk out from behind the walls but feeling paralyzed.

Without God goggles, they would never get it together.

But, one day, they cried out in desperation for new eyes, new visions, to replace the distortions of self that caused the pushing away of the most precious gift.

The walls disappeared and love reigned supreme. Healed hearts, united at last.

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Restoration

As I compose this, the thunder rolls outside my window reminding me of the eternal battle between good and evil that affects our daily lives.

So much damage can be done when we give into selfishness or are the recipients of someone else doing just that. The Lord brought to my mind the concept of restoration which has been the theme of quite a few sermons I have heard over the last year or so and so came the concept of selfishness as well as the concepts of selflessness and healing.

I’ve come to realize that restoration does not mean that God will put us back in relationships that we dread with people who are still not healed. Part of what it means, is that he will restore us to the point that the cracks in our hearts are removed. He can make everything new as though it was never broken or scarred.

I had a very good conversation with a very dear person recently. It is a relationship that has undergone some restoration for which I have prayed in various ways over time. It can be so tempting to pray a particular result with respect to how we relate with another individual or group of individuals. However, when we begin praying that God changes us and that God heal the other party or parties involved without dogmatic agenda as to the end result of the relationship here on Earth, God can do so much more than we can ask or imagine even in our wildest dreams.

In the conversation I had, I saw skepticism replaced with faith and a warm heart shown willingly after it had been hidden so deeply for many reasons for many years.

I believe this is a season of restoration where what is broken in you can be healed and made as though it never happened.

God is waiting to hear you cry out to Him.