Hi I'm Tess
I graduated college with an English degree in 2008 and a few weeks later, I married my best friend. We still live the college life as he is in graduate school. We welcomed a little girl into our family last year and she brings us so much happiness! We own a business scanning 35 mm slides and enjoy all things photography. My favorite things to do include hiking and enjoying the outdoors, watching Pixar movies, making homemade pizza, and playing games (anything from card games to Nintendo to freeze tag). I'm a proud aunt and love spending time with family.
Why I am a Mormon
My favorite thing about being a Mormon is the emphasis on strengthening the family. The family is under attack more and more and I feel strongly that the good of society relies on families succeeding. The gospel provides an anchor in my life of good values that aren't shifted with the ideas of men, and it also gives me an eternal perspective when things get tough. I was raised as a member of the church and have had several spiritual confirmations that this is Christ's church on the earth. Serving as a missionary and teaching others about the restoration of the gospel of Jesus Christ really was enlightening and showed me how much I have been blessed throughout the course of my life purely by trying to be obedient to God's commandments. Without a doubt, every good thing in my life is connected to being a member of the church. I have certainly had trials and hardships and I'm far from perfect, but I know that Heavenly Father loves me and cares about me and my happiness. There is only one way to return back to Him and have eternal life and that is through our Savior Jesus Christ. This is the good news of the gospel!
In what ways have your prayers been answered?
This is a big question that I can only partially answer in this small amount of space. Being married to a loving and kind man and becoming a mother are two things that I have prayed for my whole life. Building our life together has led us to many crossroads where we weren't entirely sure how things would work out or which path we should take. But praying together over these matters has brought us closer together as husband and wife, and closer to our Heavenly Father. I have felt confirmation time and time again that Heavenly Father is aware of me and knows me. He will not let me go too far down a wrong path before correcting me and showing me the right way, as long as I am trying to live in a way that is pleasing to Him.
How has the Holy Ghost helped you?
Particularly since becoming a parent, I can easily stress out over my child and could worry myself to death over my baby and her safety. She's still a baby but I realize that I will always be worried about her well-being in some way. The only way I can relax is to remember that the Lord is in charge. I trust that He will help me do what I need to as a mom and that I can receive promptings through the Holy Ghost as far as taking care of my child. I know that there is no guarantee of her safety but I have confidence that if I will be obedient then I can be guided as a parent to do what's best for my child. Since she's a baby, the promptings I've received are as simple as to put sunscreen on her or something like that. As she grows older, it may be to not let her go somewhere. I can't anticipate every scenario, but having faith and trust in the Lord to communicate with me through the Holy Ghost gives me the peace of mind I need.
How I live my faith
Being a member of the church is much more than just attending Sunday services. It's my entire lifestyle. I find myself being more open to talking to strangers and being friendly because I know that we are all children of our heavenly parents. Others' kindnesses have helped me have a better day and I hope to pay it forward. I have a constant prayer in my heart that I can be a good wife, mother, sister, daughter, aunt, and friend. I think about the Savior and study about his life and teachings and try to implement them into my life. The organization of the church is truly divine. There is no paid clergy, so we all work together to serve each other. I have been asked to serve in many different capacities that have helped me to grow and develop. Being asked to teach has given me choice opportunities to study a topic more fully and then to learn from others' comments and ideas. Most recently, I helped the women in my area plan enriching activities to strengthen their homes and families and to serve the community.