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Hi I'm Jon

I'm originally from Texas. I've lived in Central America and Asia. I live in Arizona now. I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I love all things international. I love traveling and especially living abroad, although that may have to slow down now that I'm hoping to get married and start a family. It's kind of a rough economy here, but I hope I can find a permanent job soon. I'm an idealist. Since serving a mission in Guatemala and living in some of its poorest parts, I have been very interested in global development. When I finished college, I started a business with the intent to use profits to fund development projects. I've since moved on from that business, but I maintain my idealism and desire to lift the world. I taught English in South Korea. Since moving back to the USA I've joined the Rotary Club so I can continue to be an active part of serving the world. I love learning! I love how much there is to experience in life. I love all sports (especially soccer, volleyball, and American football), art, music, hiking, climbing, exploring caves, and reading. I enjoy spending time with friends. I find I have less and less time for the TV, and it's wonderful. I'm excited about what comes next in life. I'm excited about becoming a husband and father and having a chance to raise kids. There's a lot of bad in the world, but there's so much good. I'm excited to be a part of it.

Why I am a Mormon

I grew up attending the Church. My parents were the first converts in our family, and they set a great example of progressing in Christ's gospel. I have always been close to the Church. That isn't to say that I've never questioned my faith. In high school, I had a lot of religious discussions that made me wonder if what I'd been taught my whole life was actually correct. I owe a great debt to a teacher of mine, an agnostic, for questioning the things I "knew." At that time, I didn't actually know, and I knew I needed to find out if I was to continue in the Church. Thankfully, God answers prayers. My first real question to Him was if He was real. I was answered through an indescribably powerful feeling of love and security - far beyond anything I had ever felt. I then asked if the Book of Mormon was true, and if Joseph Smith really had been a prophet. The feeling repeated, with a conviction that it was all true. The next time I spoke with my agnostic teacher and he asked me how I could possibly say that I knew the truth of something, I had a ready answer. This experience carried me through my mission and has always been with me as my faith has been tested. The funny thing is, despite the power of that first answer, it isn't what gives me the strongest conviction of the truth of the Gospel. It was like a light turning on, but there's been a more gradual process that has increased my understanding and conviction far more than that original answer. This second answer has come as I have lived life. I wish I could say that I have always made the best choices and lived a perfect life, but I have not. In my course of good and poor choices, I've noticed a striking pattern. When I make choices in accordance with the gospel, I am happy. When I don't, I'm not. It's simple, but it's such a powerful way for me to know of the goodness and correctness of the Gospel. As I follow the Prophet, I am a better and stronger person. I know the gospel is true. I know the Church is true.

How I live my faith

I have always been active in the Church. As a young man, I helped organize youth activities and I participated in the Boy Scout program. I have been a Sunday School teacher and I have been among the leadership of my local congregations. I often visit other Church members in their homes and share gospel messages with them and find other ways to be of service to them. I served a two year mission to Guatemala and dedicated myself to preaching the truths of the restored gospel there. More than my Church activity, though, I think I live my faith most when I'm outside of Church. That's when many opportunities to be a Christian present themselves. That's when I see people who need a hand, a tank of gas, a bite to eat, or even just a smile and a reminder that they are important. I live my faith most in the way I treat my family and those I see around me. I live my faith when I treat my girlfriend with respect and love. Maybe, more than anything else, I live my faith when nobody else is around. I live my faith when I turn off an inappropriate movie or song. I live my faith when I make sure my thoughts are clean and uplifting. I live my faith when no one else would ever know whether or not I'm living my faith. And when I live my faith when it's just between me and God, it becomes a lot easier to live my faith everywhere else.