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Hi I'm Chandler Balkman

I am a skier. I am a photographer. I am an amputee, and I’m a Mormon.

About Me

My name is Chandler. I'm originally from Washington State, right at the foot of the Cascade Mountains, not far from Seattle. Many people who know me quickly associate me with a terrible boating accident I was in when I was 16, which resulted in the loss of my right leg all the way up to my hip. Although this doesn't define who I am, it certainly effects me day to day as I have to work a little harder, physically, than most guys my age to get around and do the things I want to do. I love to have fun. I love to go fast. I love to ski the biggest, steepest mountains I can find, and I ski them on one leg. I love listening to music, especially classic rock and EDM. I love to photograph the things I see around me, and I especially like capturing patterns found in little things that would otherwise go unnoticed.

Why I am a Mormon

I owe so much of my faith in Christ to the good example set for me by my parents. I grew up in a family where everyone is passionate about what they do. My family is passionate about life. Just like me, they like to have fun. We like to ski together. We like to spend time together. We make the effort to do things together. At the core of everything we do is our faith in God, our love for each other, and of course, this faith. I have seen the results of living with confidence and trust in God. I am happy. My family is happy. I have a pretty logical mind. I majored in Biology for a year before taking a break to serve a mission, and have always liked science. I like when things make sense. I am always learning more and more truth, whether it be truth about science and the universe, or whether it be truth about the teachings of God. In this church, I ask questions, and I actually find answers. Like everyone else, I sometimes have doubts. Every time I do, I go look for an answer. Through studying and praying, I find that specific answer, dispelling the doubt I had before. Everything that I have learned in this church makes sense, but there's something that is more important than a logical understanding, and that is the spiritual assurance that can be felt as we pray and get an answer from God. Prayers really are heard and answered by a Heavenly Father who loves us. That's how I have come to know that this church not only makes sense, but it is right. It is true.

How I live my faith

I live my faith by doing my best to live like God would want me to live. We know that one of the purposes of life is to grow in knowledge and experience, and so I do my best to always keep on learning. Lately, that effort has been focused towards the Chinese language, which is so fascinating to me. I love it. I also live with a knowledge that God hopes I become a better person before I die. In order to be a little better, I do my best to emulate the example of Jesus Christ. Does that mean I'm close to being a perfect person? Nope. However, I am trying to find my weaknesses and build them into strengths, and that process is definitely rewarding. I believe that life should be enjoyed. I also believe that it can be enjoyed the most if we understand and come to believe the things taught in this church. I understand that this life is not the end. When I lost my leg in 2006, I found so much strength in this knowledge. I have grown so much through the last few years, because I've learned how to deal with challenges, and how to endure tough situations. I really think it's molded me into a better person. A lot of people don't believe in miracles these days. I can tell you, the fact that I am alive, healthy and without brain damage after a crazy near-death accident plus the ensuing health complications, is a miracle. I live my faith by making every day count.

What do Mormons believe about the Holy Ghost? Who is the Holy Ghost?

Chandler Balkman
The Holy Ghost is a spirit, who acts as God's messenger to each one of us. The messages he relays usually come through feelings or thoughts--inspiration. The Holy Ghost is what helps us learn truth about God. When I read the Bible or the Book of Mormon, I feel the Holy Ghost, which helps me know that what I'm reading is true. It's hard to describe the feelings of the Holy Ghost, because they are different than normal feelings. They are spiritual feelings. It is the Holy Ghost communicating with our spirit, and when it is felt, it is tough to deny. When you feel it, you always feel closer to God. Show more Show less