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Hi I'm James

5 feet 4 inches, lover of science and music, runner and pianist, indefatigable optimist, and missionary for the Lord Jesus Christ.

About Me

I just finished up my first year at Brigham Young University, starting my education in Neuroscience. I'm currently serving a 2-year mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. I'm a singer, a dancer, a pianist, a runner, a lover of science and books, and a sincere and hard working (though far from perfect!) disciple of Jesus Christ. I am the second youngest of 7 siblings, and I'm very grateful for the wonderful influence my family has been in my life. I know that my family has been blessed beyond understanding by the restored Gospel of Jesus Christ, by the influence of the Holy Ghost, by the Savior's Atonement, and by the love of God. I'm serving as a full-time missionary because I want to help other people receive the great joy and blessings I have received from the restored Gospel, and being an ordained minister and representative of Jesus Christ allows me to do this far beyond my normal capabilities. I promise that the church Christ organized is on the Earth again and that it is The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, which was restored through a prophet in 1830 and is still led by a prophet today. I know the truth of these things because Heavenly Father has manifested the truth to me by the Holy Ghost, which is a very real and important part of my life.

Why I am a Mormon

I am a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints because the Lord has made it known to me that this IS Christ's church. I spent a lot of time when I was younger doubting and looking for answers to my questions and problems. I won't share too many details, but suffice to sa that it was a long and painful process. In the calm, quiet, yet powerful communication of the Holy Ghost, my Heavenly Father has confirmed to me that this is the true church upon the Earth. As a lover of arts and sciences, I have many long and complicated explanations for why I think and feel this church is true, but they are all nothing when compared to the straightforward conviction my God has helped me develop that these things are true. I have a very strong testimony that Heavenly Father answers our prayers when we have enough faith in Him to work for the answers because that's exactly what I did. Sure, I was raised with the teachings of the Gospel, but my real conversion didn't come until I decided to work for the answers. And the answers are still coming. Every time I think I know and believe a lot, the Lord shows me that there is more, and it is through His church, His scriptures (including the Book of Mormon), His prophet and other ordained servants, and the Gift of the Holy Ghost (which can only be given by those holding the proper priesthood authority, which is only found in this church) that this constant stream of answers has been coming. I am a "Mormon" because this is God's church and He teaches me and takes care of me through it. This is Christ's church, and no one can convince me otherwise.

How I live my faith

Having the fullness of the Gospel of Jesus Christ in my life has given me a very hopeful outlook on life, and I do my best to share the joy and comfort of the Gospel with those around me. A large part of how I live my faith by refusing to let the pains and sorrows of the world get me down. I have sworn as a member of this church to bear others' burdons, mourn with those that mourn, and comfort those that stand in need of comfort. This I have done and this I still do, but because of the Atonement of the Savior Jesus Christ, I do it with a smile and with as much love as I can muster. I'm still very imperfect and I still have so much to learn, but I do my best to carry on with faith and joy, because that's what the Savior did in His life on Earth and I want to follow Him. I am currently serving as a missionary in order to keep the commandments the Lord has given to carry His word forward to all the world and to care for His children as He would.

What do Mormons believe concerning the doctrine of grace?

James
None of us can save ourselves. We all need the grace of God in order to be forgiven of our sins and thus be able to return to our Heavenly Father. But we also have many commandments we need to keep and covenants we need to make to receive the grace of God. When Christ said "I am the bread of life" to an upset and hungry multitude, He wanted them to understand that He didn't come to Earth to provide free food for whoever happened to stand near Him--He came to show, teach, and provide a better way to live and a better life to receive after this life on Earth. His perfect life, wonderful teachings, excruciating suffering for our sins, terrible death on the cross, and miraculous resurrection all took place so we could learn how to and want to change from a state of sin and condemnation to a state of righteousness and salvation through Him. If we aren't willing to accept and apply His Atonement (His suffering, death, and resurrection) so we can change from what we are to what He wants us to be, then we waste the tremendous sacrifice He made on our behalf. Truly, the sacrifice has been made to pay for each of our sins, but our responsibility is not removed. We must take responsibility for whether or not we will exercise our faith and continually follow the Savior (in deed and not just in word) and let His Atonement change and prepare us for salvation. He will not force His children to Heaven, but He's ready and willing to give us everything we need if we will but accept it. Show more Show less