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Hi I'm Sterling

I'm an Actuary, a mathematician, a jazz enthusiast, a husband, and a father. I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I am a 27 year old actuary and father of 2 children. I live in Georgia with my wonderful wife, who I have known for 13 years. I love Jazz, barbecue (what man doesn't?), and most branches of Mathematics.

Why I am a Mormon

My parents have always been members of the Church and so I have as well. However, when I was 16, I decided that I wanted to know for myself if it was the Church God wanted me to go to, or if I could begin doing things that appeared 'more fun'. For around 6 months I read the Book of Mormon and studied intensely. I specifically looked for things that would suggest that Joseph Smith either translated the Book as he said he did, or whether he made it all up. After studying, I came to Alma chapter 11 (something like 200 pages in) where it talks about the coins the people used. It was so confusing I read it three times and made a diagram before it made sense. This suggested, as had hundreds of other things, that the Book was what it claimed to be. I then realized that I could continue to study forever, but I'd never know if it was true unless I did what the Church always tells us to do: directly ask God, in the name of Christ, with full intent to follow God's response, if the Book of Mormon was true or not. That night, as I prayed, I received a strong feeling from inside of me that was different from then normal things we feel. It was not an emotion, but was an overwhelming sensation of peace and love. I learned many things through the Spirit in that moment. I instantly knew that God is watching over me. That He loves me. That He listens to and answers prayers for all His children. It also told me the Book of Mormon was true. I know that while many churches and philosophies are good and can help us develop faith in God, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints is the only Church on the Earth today that has the answers and the authority we need to return to live with our Father in Heaven.

How I live my faith

Being a Mormon influences how I live every day of my life - it is not just an outfit I wear on Sundays. Having a testimony of Jesus Christ and knowing I am living the way He wants me to helps me to have peace in my life and feel love for my Father in Heaven as well as my fellow brothers and sisters here on Earth. Currently, my family and I are able to attend a Portuguese congregation (since I served a mission in Brazil) and I am the 'mission leader', which means I try to help the missionaries in our area do God's work of preaching the gospel. It has been my privilege to go with the missionaries regularly and see the difference living the gospel has in people's lives. It is amazing to see the change that comes over people when they read the Book of Mormon, really wanting to know if it is true or not. I know other people think that we Mormons are brain-washed or not thinking straight - that we are only concerned with unflinching loyalty to the Church. If we have such a strong loyalty to the Church, to the 12 apostles and prophet of today, it is only because we have tested it for ourselves and felt God answer the question of our souls: that this Church is true. I seriously looked at the Church when I was 17 and said: "If this isn't true, I'm not following. There's a lot of fun stuff to do." I asked God to tell me if the Book of Mormon was true. I felt His confirming spirit tell me it was. I immediately felt (1) that God knows me, He listens to my prayers and He cares about me, (2) that the Book of Mormon was true, which means that Joseph Smith was a prophet (God would not send a correct book to a liar), and (3) the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is the Church I should follow. This personal communication has stayed with me through the years, and I have since had countless more experiences and communications from God that continue to reaffirm the important revelation I felt that night. I am so grateful He listens to me.

Do Mormons practice polygamy?

Sterling
Today, Mormons are commonly associated with polygamy, even though the practice was discontinued in the Mormon Church in 1890 - over 120 years ago! Today there are still some who claim to be Mormon and who practice polygamy, but it should be recognized that they are not part of our Church - anyone belonging to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints today who practices polygamy is excommunicated and their names are removed from our rosters. In modern revelation, we learn that we are never supposed to practice this unless specifically told to by the Lord (through the prophet) as was the case with Solomon and David in the Old Testament. Know that we do not want to practice polygamy. I don't know any Mormons who do. We know that if we were asked to, the Lord would help us to understand why, as He will with any commandment. However, until that day (which we do not expect to ever come), we will neither practice it nor look forward to doing so. Show more Show less