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Life experiences can change your whole focus on life--I didn’t go straight to college after high school, but after living in Rome, Italy for two years as a missionary for my church, I immediately began my schooling at a local university. I loved school and couldn’t think of any place that I would rather be than on campus…life was good. And so during my freshman year of college philosophy became not only my major, but what informed every decision I would make afterwards. By April of 2001, I was married and had started a family, had graduated from college, and had now been accepted into a law school program. My life was exciting. But, as I said, life experiences can change everything. During my first year of law school, I was driving my car when another car crashed into mine. I was in a coma for almost four months. Back in school, after many months of rehabilitation from a traumatic brain injury, I realized that my priorities had shifted. It was clear to me that I wanted a career in a service field in which I could make a difference in the lives of others. Everything that I had gone through as a direct result of the accident had made me want to play a role in helping others along their individual journeys in life. More specifically, I wanted to work with young people and help guide and mentor them. And so, I began to prepare for a career in counseling and will earn a degree in school counseling in May of 2012. My life is the best--I wouldn't change a thing about it!
I have chosen to be a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints because I know that it's true--that is, I know that the church is Jesus Christ's church restored to the Earth. God, mine and Christ's father-in-heaven, wants me to be a member of His church on the Earth. I have read the Book of Mormon and I have prayed to my Heavenly Father to ask him if those feelings that I felt were from Him that tell me that the Book is a true book. He sent me feelings of of happiness, feelings of joy, and I have felt His love while praying. I have felt that my Heavenly Father was telling me that the Book was true, that Joseph Smith was his prophet sent to earth to translate that scripture and restore His church, that he did restore God's church to the Earth. Because the church is true, that means that I needed to be baptized and follow His prophet and His church. I knew that I needed to follow them to a life of happiness that it would lead me to. I am a Mormon because God wants me to be a Mormon and because He will bless my life forever if I follow His will.
Ever since I was given the Holy Ghost, I have felt closer to God and to Jesus Christ. I am better able to pray--the Holy Ghost helps me to know what it is that I should pray for and reminds me of the things that I need to repent of. I can remember dozens and dozens of times that the Holy Ghost has warned me not to eat food that would have made me sick, warned me not to forget to go to a meeting that I had promised to be at, has helped me to know what I should tell my wife or my child as they were sick or sad or struggling and needed help. The Holy Ghost has also helped me to know that I needed to not continue going the way that I have been going. In 2001, when I was driving with my one-year-old son on a lazy Sunday morning, trying to get him to fall asleep so that my wife and I could drive to see my cousins adopt a new baby girl, and our car was hit by a crazy driver--the Holy Ghost had whispered to me to move my son's car seat from the side to the middle position, and because I had moved the car seat, my son wasn't crushed when the car of that crazy driver slammed into the door where my son's car-seat had been just moments before. I am so grateful for the whisperings of the Holy Ghost in my life, thankful for the Holy Ghost's whispers that saved my son's life, thankful that I have learned that the Holy Ghost delivers God's word and mind to His children here on the Earth, and I am trying to learn how to better listen to and obey that voice sent from my Heavenly Father.
I love my God and I love my Savior. I have made promises to both of them and I try to keep all of my promises. I also have made promises to others, like my wife, my parents, my children--I try to make all the promises I've made work together, so that I am never breaking the promises I've made to my God while I'm living my life with my wife and kids. I try to enter and engage in every relationship that I'm in a way that I can act wholeheartedly. Jesus Christ is my example in everything that I do and all I need to ask myself is, "How would Jesus have me act now?"