Hi I'm Hilary.
I love life! I am the youngest of seven children and love being an aunt. I love my family so much and am constantly amazed at the lessons they teach me. I majored in Piano Performance and have recently enjoyed competing in duo piano competitions. I am married to my best friend who makes me grateful for him every day. I love to do anything outside (especially in the sunshine!), watch movies (mostly intense action ones), and read book. I love to laugh and love feeling peaceful.
Why I am a Mormon
I grew up as a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. I also lived in an area where there were lots of members of the church. Becuase of that, I was faced with a crucial decision Do I really NEED to find out if this all TRUE? I know that the principles of the gospel I've been living are good... isn't "good" enough? When we find something that is good, we are happy! We don't question, we don't really feel a need to seek it out more. Good is good! But what I discovered, becuase I DID decide to seek it out, was TRUTH. And truth has a far greater worth to the soul when weighed against the struggles we all face. My search consisted of doing the same things I had been doing all my life- going to church, reading the scriptures, trying to make good friends, avoiding bad situations... but something was different. My heart and my desires had changed. I really wanted to know if it was all from God. Through this process my relationship with God strengthened. I prayed becuase I had the desire to know God and to seek His counsel. I read the scriptures becuase I felt a need to learn and to apply the principles in my life. I went to church to remember and honor the Savior, Jesus Christ, and to receive the blessings of the sacrament. I started making better choices for the right reasons. When I made this change, my answers came quickly and very strongly. I felt such peace and assurance. I continue to feel that same peace each day as I try to draw closer to God. I know that God loves me. He wants me to be happy and to do all I can to help those around me be happy, too. He has put TRUTH on the earth so we don't have to choose between all of the "good" things in the world. If we follow the principles Christ taught, we can discover the truth and be happy. I love being a follower of Jesus Christ. It has helped me realize who I am and, more importantly, who I CAN be.
How has the Book of Mormon brought you closer to God?
I read the Book of Mormon and I feel such peace!! When I mark verses or words that stick out to me, I remember them more. I try to look for things that I can apply in my life. Because the Book of Mormon came from God, the teachings, when applied, will bring us closer to Him! There is no better way to find out if the Book of Mormon will draw you closer to God than to read it, look for things you can apply, do your best to make the changes, and then see if you don't grow closer to Him!
How does making right choices help us make more right choices?
When we make a right choice, we feel good inside. Even something as simple as stopping to help someone when you're in a rush. It doesn't make sense, yet you feel good! This is God telling you that He is pleased with you and that you're on the right track. Because the world has little to offer in the way of true peace and inexplainable happiness, this is addicting! We have a desire to follow God when we feel His love and approval... which we feel when we make right choices.
How has the Holy Ghost helped you?
The Holy Ghost doesn't just speak when we are supposed to be a specific place, or say something specific. Every feeling we get that is positive and wholesome is from the Spirit. By really paying attention to when I have these feelings, I've been able to more clearly understand what Heavenly Father wants me to do. He will send His Spirit when we are lonely and need encouragement, when we make right choices, when truth is revealed, and when we need to feel His love. My life would be completely different without the influence of the Holy Ghost. Without that guidance, I wouldn't be confident in who I am or in what I do. I wouldn't know how to direct myself in new situations. I wouldn't be able to distinguish between all the good things in the world that compete for my attention and the most important things. The Holy Ghost helps me prioritize and, if I listen, it helps me understand and learn along the way.
How can your talents and gifts bless others?
Everyone has different gifts and talents. I've been blessed by those who have the gift of listening, the gift of testimony, the gift of faith, the gift of love, the gift of understanding, the gift of teaching... so many gifts! Expressing my thoughts and testimony through music help me to feel the Spirit and THAT is what I want to share with others!
Please explain the part prayer plays in your life?
Prayer is such a great gift! I grew up saying prayers and knowing that it was important to pray, but I feel only recently have my prayers really been a communication with Heavenly Father. What changed? When I am praying to know His will, not to let Him know what I want, I feel a lot stronger connection. When we pray with faith, we come to understand Him better. We realize that He really DOES know what is best for us! We realize that we CAN know His will and how we should proceed through that day to find and share the ultimate happiness. When I am praying and really trying to find out what He wants me to do, I feel like I receive guidance and He is more able to guide and bless me.
What is hope and what do you hope for?
Hope is believing that good will prevail! Because of Jesus Christ, I have hope that I can change. I have hope that I can overcome weaknesses or flaws and become better. I have hope that tomorrow is a new day. I have hope that I can choose to be happy! "Whoso believeth in God might with surety hope for a better world, yea, even on the right hand of God, which hope cometh of faith, maketh an anchor to the souls of men..." Book of Mormon, Ether 12:4. Having hope and faith in Christ truly provides that anchor we need from day to day!
How I live my faith
I would say, first and foremost, that I try to live the principles that Jesus Christ taught- forgiveness, charity, service, repentance, faith...etc. Being a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints helps me to strengthen Christlike attributes. The organization is set up so that we learn how to serve, how to love, how to repent. By studying the scriptures each day and praying throughout the day, my faith in Jesus Christ turns into actions. My goal is to be changed so I can help others do the same! I am currently serving as a full time missionary in Portland, Oregon and loving it!! The gospel of Jesus Christ has changed my life- it is such a blessing to invite others to allow it to change theirs.