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Hi I'm Andy

I'm a singer. I'm a nerd. I'm a researcher. I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I am 30 years old and married. I am a college grad. I am an internet entrepreneur. I love books and learning new things everyday. I love to run. I was a sprinter and hurdler in high school and early college, but I am converting to a distance runner. I LOVE to downhill ski when there is snow and water ski when there is heat and a bright sun. I love singing and have been in half 5 different collegiate A cappella groups. I like to breakdance, though my 30 year-old body doesn't allow for as much agility as when I was 18. Oh and I love traveling. Who doesn’t? So far I have been to Alaska, Canada, Chile, Mexico, Egypt, Israel, France, Italy and Jordan (not to mention many of the amazing places in the rest of mainland USA). Amazing places! I am patriotic and love my home country. I am bilingual though I do not speak Spanish with the perfection of Miguel de Cervantes. I can cook a mean meal (and by mean I don’t mean average). I come from a family that has not been without struggles, but we love each other no matter what and we are awesome. We strengthen each other and I love it. Life is great.

Why I am a Mormon

I am a Mormon for a lot of reasons. The main reason is because being a Mormon provides me with an anchor. Whether you make a comfortable $350,000 a year or are scraping by on $6.75 an hour (before taxes), life is tough. Money can’t buy you everything. Even if your financial situation promises to be stable the rest of your life, there will be times that even though your bank account is brim-full, your life feels empty. It will happen if it hasn’t already. There comes a time when you are sitting alone at night and you just feel that something is missing. Being a Mormon means more than just going to church on Sundays and not drinking coffee. It means that you are promised peace and stability. You are given an anchor. An anchor of hope that no matter what happens in life, you have a light to walk with and a foundation to stand on. It is fullness. There is nothing left to doubt. You know where you came from before this life. You understand why you are here (not just to pay bills and taxes). And you know what will happen after you die. You no longer feel like your only identity is your social security number but that you are an individual of importance who is noticed by a God who knows your name. It is ultimate security, eternal security. Being a Mormon means that God’s power isn’t just found at church or with the chaplain, it is in your home. I am a Mormon because I know that it has a foundation that is sound and sure. More than anything else, I am a Mormon because I have a knowledge from God that the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints is true. I didn’t learn it from anyone but God. He will tell anyone who truly seeks to know. Read the Book of Mormon together with the Bible and ask God if it is true. Just ask Him. Do it. Everyone who sufficiently investigates what our foundation is and the claims that we make and then goes to God with an open heart will receive an answer from God that it is true. I dare you to try it.

How I live my faith

One of my friends called me the other day as I was making an omelet in my kitchen after a long day at work. He was frantic. He told me to go to the hospital as fast as I could because he needed me to help him. He said: “my dad is dying, I need you to give him a blessing”. I dropped the beaten eggs and tomatoes and turned off the hot plate. Thankfully I live only a few rock-throws away from the hospital so I arrived quickly. My friend’s dad was life-flighted to the hospital because his kidneys were shutting down and this was causing problems with the rest of his body. He wasn’t an old man by any means. When I got there, I tried to calm down my friend as we walked to the ICU. He was really emotionally unstable, as most people would be whose fathers were unconscious and fading fast. I was nervous. I had never seen anyone die before, let alone been called on to give a priesthood blessing to a person on their deathbed. Another man anointed and I sealed the anointing in the name of Jesus Christ. We had to do it quickly because they were doing a lot of treatments to keep him alive. He was in bad shape and I was afraid that my friend’s heart was about to be broken. I knew that God’s power could raise this man from the dead. I knew the priesthood power was real. If it weren’t, I wouldn’t be alive (I was given a priesthood blessing as a new-born and I lived after almost choking to death). It was the same power that Jesus used to raise Lazarus from the dead and to lift Jairus’ from her lifeless state and say that she was only sleeping. I also knew that, though I gave a blessing, it was not in my hands. It was in God’s hands. The blessing helped to calm everyone down and to feel more peace, though I didn’t know what the final outcome would be. I received a text at 1:33 AM from my friend that his father had died. This was a difficult experience. Despite all that seemed wrong or unfair about it, we did all we could and we ultimately knew that it was in God’s hands. It was a real test of faith for me. Did I really believe that this was God’s will? If he wasn’t healed, is the priesthood real? Is there really an afterlife where my friend will see his Dad again? What if this were my dad? It was a strengthening experience though because it really helped me to show love to Ben (my friend) and to share my faith with him of the plan and of God’s love. He really struggled as anyone would who can’t even say goodbye to their father before they die. To me, living my faith isn’t just going to church, reading my scriptures, and saying my prayers but being there when someone REALLY needs you. Showing love to someone who doesn’t deserve it or who you don’t even know. Being willing to be there even if you can’t change the outcome of someone’s life. Doing all you can to help even if you don’t see the instant result. That is faith to me. That is how I try to live my faith. I am not perfect, but living my faith means trusting that my imperfections will be recompensed by God’s grace.

Do Mormons regard the Bible as Holy Scripture and the word of God?

The Bible is such an important part of our faith and the foundation of everything in our church. The Book of Mormon is probably spoken of and referred to more often than the Bible by the lay member - and that is a good thing because it is also part of our foundation. When you actually do a tally of how often church leaders quote the Book of Mormon in our world wide General Conferences, the New Testament alone is quoted twice as many times as the Book of Mormon and the Old Testament and New Testament combined are almost 4 times as quoted. Here are the actual numbers of citation to the general population of the church by church leaders since 1924: Book of Mormon: 15,441 times New Testament: 38,908 Old Testament: 18,742 The Bible combined: 57,650 citations since 1924. Feel free to look these numbers up for yourself at http://scriptures.byu.edu. A computer science professor and research assistants have been working on this citation project for a while and have come up with quite the database! All research aside, there is not a competition between the two holy books. They were both brought up and preserved by God. It is a miracle that both have arrived in our hands today. There are some amazing stories about how the Bible has been preserved if you do a little wikipedia search for Bible martyrs or Foxe’s Book of Martyrs or if you start to really research the history of the making of the Bible read about how the Bible was made and how it was preserved and how we even have it today. (I highly recommend the text by Stephen Miller and Robert Huber entitled “The Bible: A History - The Making and Impact of the Bible”). You’ll read about many amazing things about people who were instrumental in the creation and preservation of the Bible that we have today. Names like St. Jerome, John Wycliffe, John Calvin, Martin Luther, Johannes Gutenberg and so many more. They all were a part of why we even have a Bible today. Most people don’t even understand what the Bible is and how it was created. Coming back to the question, we believe in the Bible because without it our church would not exist today. Joseph Smith’s reading from the Epistle of James (first chapter, fifth and sixth verses) were what prompted him to ask God what to do. He did pray, he saw the Jehovah of the Old Testament and the Messiah of the New (Jesus Christ). God the Father and Jesus Christ appeared to him and that was the beginning of this whole church. That’s why we believe in the Bible among other great things (it teaches truth, speaks of the Savior’s life, inspires people to do good, etc.). Show more Show less