Start.

There once was a blog called “Why did the chicken cross the road?

There was also once a blog called “The Blueberry Danish.

The writer of these two literary troves: Kimberly Anne Ivany the First.

Back in 2010, the Maple Lodge Farms Show Team went on a cross-Canada adventure promoting chicken… Sounds absolutely cray, even to me as I type that out, but it seriously was thee best summer job in all the land; 5 of my fellow chicken mates and I put on free barbeques across this beautiful country of ours for a month, driving in a tractor trailer that morphed into a kitchen. Oh yes.

A few months later, I got on a plane to Denmark to study TV journalism for a semester abroad.

You probably have a hunch (based on my May trip, and previously written odes to that country) that Daneland is my Heartland. I really love that I can re-live many a day I spent there by re-reading the thoughts and adventures of a young Kimberly in 2011 Europe.

After those two significant chapters in my life, however, I stopped using a dot com place to document lived magic.

While Facebook has been a beaut for giving me an alternate space to do so, I’ve been feeling that it’s time to recreate a permanent place for my thoughts; not a blog confined by a themed time frame, but one that catalogues my adventures through life segments and border-crossings, existing whether I be in New York City, or Toronto, or hiking in Mongolia. (You never know.)

Thusly! Here you have it: The Ivany Times, if you will.

When I began to think of a Kimberly-encapsulating title for this thang, the word ‘tale’ came to mind, which you surely have already read on the header above.

This english word is defined as ‘a fictitious or true narrative or story, especially one that is imaginatively recounted.’

Indeed, I am excited to shape this website into a collection of real experiences, pieced together with the thoughts and musings that each one sparks in my head.

‘Tale’ (pronounced ‘TAY-leh’) is also the Danish word meaning ‘Speak.’

As I’ve experienced the things along the path from kid, to adolescent, to young adult, I know with such certainty that I am a being created to express.

I think we, as humans, are all designed to express in some capacity. Sometimes it’s through sport, other times it’s acting on a stage, or it may be by mixing ingredients to make something new in the kitchen. We are programmed to create!

In my case, my need to express is illuminated by my desire to tell stories. Whether it be recounting them into the keyboard or talking to someone willing to listen, I have an engrained eagerness to communicate narratives – full and true ones that perhaps make you look at something differently.

Thus, the title scribed above is dual purpose, which – bonus – makes me smile with delight since the word that made the cut is also Dansk.

You probably also noticed something else up there on that header bar; an interesting tagline that may have raised your eyebrow:

“And so, here I am, preaching and writing about things that are way over my head, the inexhaustible riches and generosity of Christ.”

That line is a direct quote, taken from chapter 3 of a book in the Bible called ‘Ephesians.’

The speaker is a dude named Paul, who, after originally fighting against God by putting Christians in jail, became one of the most well-known ministers way back in them biblical days.

The flip of this man’s life calling came after a very powerful and tangible prompting from God.

With a “blinding flash of light,” God told Paul to preach on His behalf by explaining the point of God’s presence in the world. In old school terms, this was the moment when Paul became an ‘apostle’ or ‘an important early Christian teacher.’

Alright, ma people.

For a very long time, I have been afraid to tell anyone beyond my family and circle of friends at church that I am a Christian.

After pressing ‘delete’ a million times as I try to write the next sentence, I think the explanation as to why that fear exists deserves a post all its own… it stems from me not wanting to be associated with the widely-adopted, negative notion of what ‘the church’ is and what ‘the church’ believes, not wanting to step onto controversial ground with someone, my often consuming desire to be liked… the list likely goes on.

While those reasons are jumping off the screen and taunting me with wild force right now, I no longer have the energy to fight them.

While I would like to write down, with luscious abandon, that this is because those reasons have lost their grip on me, my transparency here is rather due to the fact that I feel like I’m being nudged to finally express in full who I am and what that means, regardless of my anxious wrestle, in pursuit of bold and billowing truth.

The purpose of this blog is to document my adventure tales – the many untold stories I’ve got in me from the past and present.

But I also want to use the words forthcoming to illustrate the beautifully tangible ways God is working in my life. I wish to express to you the influence of a spiritual force that MAKES my experiences come alive.

Amazingly, and rather inexplicably, I feel like my life is slowly, but very surely starting to encompass something of that centuries-old narrative.

Perhaps you, reader there, believe in God as well. Maybe you feel there’s something greater, but don’t quite know how to name it. Maybe you don’t believe in anything at all.

Despite these inevitable spiritual differences among humans, I think there is a piece of wisdom that all eyes on this post can attest to:

Proclaiming what is real will launch you into freedom.

Conceivably, you may be able to relate to a time when you felt the weight of something false… a time when you felt the need to go against that cliche command to ‘just be yourself’ in order to fit in… to make someone like you… to escape the feeling of vulnerability.

Let me tell you straight up that me telling you I am a Christian right now is a huge step into a vulnerable space. But at the same time, a very FREEING space that may open up a channel for something marvellous.

Look at what happens when you rock your favourite romper, even though everyone else rolls their eyes at it.

When you unleash a painful story from the past that has been imprisoning you for so long.

When you finally tell that person that you love them – male or female.

Feeling like I can’t write or tell stories is one of the ways that makes me feel suppressed; a situation that silences my joy.

But perhaps an even bigger circumstance that cancels my elation is when I feel afraid to exemplify how much light I have in me, due to the very fact that God is woven into my essence.

HA! But did I actually just say that? Did I actually write those words out loud, regardless of what you might be thinking about them?

Totally did.

I ain’t gonna press delete.

It’s about time I embrace the vulnerability that accompanies being Kimberly Ivany, in hopes that the words I am inspired to write and freely express will be as equally inspiring for you – in big and beautiful ways that I cannot predict.

I feel – I HOPE – that something radical is on the brink.

In that same chapter in Ephesians, in regards to his sudden calling to tell people about what the Man Upstairs is up to, Paul says this:

“This is my life work: helping people understand and respond to this Message. It came as a sheer gift to me, a real surprise, God handling all the details. When it came to presenting the Message to people who had no background in God’s way, I was the least qualified of any of the available Christians. God saw to it that I was equipped, but you can be sure that it had nothing to do with my natural abilities.”

He continues –

“As you read over what I have written to you, you’ll be able to see for yourselves into the mystery of Christ … My task is to bring out in the open and make plain what God, who created all this in the first place, has been doing in secret and behind the scenes all along.”

Here I am, back on the blog: Kimberly Anne Ivany the First, the girl who is absolutely petrified to tell you about the ramifications of her faith.

Time to write.

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