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Hi I'm JR

I'm a husband, Sport Psychology Consultant, student, athlete, great listener, and a disciple of Christ. I'm a Mormon!

About Me

I’ve spent most of my life in Arizona, but grew up in a military family that moved between AZ, TX, and NY until I was 11 when my dad retired after 22 years. At 19, I served a full-time mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints in Indiana which was one of the most influential experiences of both my spiritual and secular life. Since then, I've graduated with a BA in Psychology, an MA in Sport Psychology, and am currently pursuing a second master's degree in Clinical Mental Health Counseling. I am a Sport Psychology Consultant who works with athletes of all levels in developing psychological skills critical to their physical performance. Once completed, my counseling degree will allow me to work with athletes in areas of mental health, in an effort to improve overall physical performance and quality of life. I'm also in the process of completing some professional research that I hope to have published in a scientific journal next year. The capstone of my life was when I married the sweetest woman I have EVER met who has changed my life in so many amazing ways. I play any sport that I can get my hands on and try to lead an active lifestyle. I believe in focusing on what I can control, disregarding what I can't; that variety is the spice of life, and that being downright silly at times is necessary to relieve stress and be happy! The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints is a huge part of my life and who I am. I LOVE to spend time with my wife and family.

Why I am a Mormon

Like many, I was raised in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. While being superficially active in my youth, I never gained a testimony of the gospel until my late teen years. It began when I was approaching the time to serve as a missionary. I had always planned on going but I also knew that without a firmly established testimony I would not be able to fulfill my purpose. I started studying the scriptures at a frequency and intensity which I had never before known; my prayers began to be more sincere and heartfelt; and, for the first time in my life, I really tried to be a better person--the person that I knew I should have been all along. This process continued for quite some time. So long, in fact, that I nearly gave up my endeavor and almost abandoned my faith in God. At the very moment when I thought this, I felt the Holy Spirit tell me in my heart that this gospel and this church were true. Twelve years later, I still remember that moment very clearly. It is from this experience that I also gained an understanding about how God answers prayers. I know that He does speak to us and is aware of us and our struggles. I know that because the Lord waited to respond to my prayer, it made my testimony all the more valuable to me. We are never alone, and if we exercise faith in God we will feel Him with us everyday. Since then, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints has only become a more significant part of my life. I continue to be a member of this church because of the peace that fills my life when I actively live my faith. Every Sunday is a chance for me to gain spiritual strength and be filled with inner peace to a degree that I cannot find anywhere else. I continue to be a member of this church because this peace helps me face daily challenges with faith, confidence, positivity, and direction. I continue to be a member of this church because, through it, Christ has literally saved me from from a life of turmoil and trouble.

How I live my faith

In writing this section, I really attempted to introspect about how I live my faith. While I feel it is important to know and recognize one's own strengths--especially, within the context of properly identifying target areas for improvement--I do not do well with reflecting enough about mine but this gave me a great opportunity to do so. Ever since I was little, my dad always communicated to me the importance of honesty. Of all the things my dad tried to teach me, for some reason, this is what stuck. I feel very strongly about this principle and am cognizant everyday about opportunities that require me to decide and choose all over again to be honest. I believe that all are children of God and should be treated as such. Honesty demands a respect for the other person before it can fully take effect. Whether one chooses to be honest or dishonest, I believe, is a direct reflection of one's latent feelings regarding others' inherent worth. As children of God, we all have a divine potential and we should see others not for what they are but for what they can become. Coupled with this virtue are those of patience, concern, and appreciation for others. I also consider these to be firmly established in my daily interactions. I believe that seeking to fill the needs--both small and great--of others, increasing our awareness of those around us, lending a listening ear, and just setting aside time to spend specifically with them are so significant in communicating to others that they are intrinsically valuable. Jesus Christ lived these principles perfectly. He also taught us to follow His example in all things. My faith in Him leads me to do these things and to live well in other ways, as He has asked of each of us.

What do Mormons believe about Jesus Christ? Do Mormons believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God?

Members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints believe that Jesus Christ is the literal Son of God, that He was sent by His Father to suffer and die for us (John 3:16), that He was resurrected after three days in the tomb, and that He lives today! We teach that He is concerned for each of us, as individuals, no matter who we are, and loves us, even when we may feel that we are unlovable. He is our friend and is always there for us, especially when we feel alone or hopeless. Because He died and was resurrected, we, too, will live again after we die and have the opportunity to live with Him and His Father—where happiness will reach its pinnacle—as we consistently come unto Him through faith and repentance. I know that because Christ suffered for our sins and mistakes, He is the source of all good things in our lives. The more I give myself to Him, the more I get back in return. I feel Him with me every day; great peace permeates my soul because I choose to follow Him. Without a doubt, I would not be who or where I am in life without His guiding influence and endless patience. I owe Him my life. Jesus Christ lived His life perfectly and beckons us to follow His example to the best of our ability, promising us His help if we but trust in Him. Only in and through Christ can true, lasting happiness occur, regardless of circumstance. All are invited to come and partake of his love. Show more Show less

What is the Book of Mormon?

Similar to the Bible, the Book of Mormon is a collection of prophetic writings that were later compiled into a single text. Contrary to some myths, the Book of Mormon was largely written around the same time as the Bible, from 600 B.C. to 421 A.D. These writings were recorded on the ancient American continent. These prophets originated in Jerusalem around the time of Jeremiah so they knew and observed the Mosaic law, were familiar with and often quoted Old Testament prophets who preceded that time (e.g., Isaiah, Moses), took comfort in the Abrahamic Covenant, and looked forward to the coming of the prophesied Messiah. These individuals also received signs of the birth and death of Christ. Ultimately, after Christ was resurrected in Jerusalem, He appeared to these people for a short time and taught his gospel, blessed the children, healed the sick, called 12 apostles, and set up his Church organization, just as He did in ancient Israel. The Book of Mormon teaches that Jesus Christ is our Savior and Redeemer; it teaches us that it is only through the grace and mercy of Christ that we are saved; that we are the children of God, that he loves us, cares for us, and blesses us constantly. The Book of Mormon helps to establish the truth of the words recorded in the Bible; the Bible helps establish the truth of the words in the Book of Mormon, for "in the mouth of two or three witnesses shall every word be established" (2 Cor. 13:1). It is truly another testament of Jesus Christ. Show more Show less