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Hi I'm Josh

I've lived in places across the U.S. and in several countries. In a couple of months, I'll be a dad. I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I'm just starting graduate school, working on a master's degree in Public Affairs. I think that I'll focus on Public Finance and/or Policy Analysis, but I've still got at least a semester or two to figure that out for sure. Erica and I are expecting our first child, a baby boy, in early November. We are excited! Our life right now is crazy, busy, always interesting-sometimes a little frightening, but that's okay. I'm so grateful that we get to face life together, as a couple and as a family! I love to garden. There is just something about working the soil with your own hands, planting a seed and watching and helping it grow and bloom and become beautiful and productive. My garden is my Walden Pond where I can be still and be in someplace quiet. It gives me peace, but it's also a piece of ground where I be the gardener, the bringer of order and prosperity. I can sense something of the holy in God's creations and at the same time appreciate how He lets me create my own little environment. We left our beautiful garden (and our chickens) that are in my profile picture in the care of relatives in another state-a farewell with no small tinge of poignancy. Yet, I feel that in some sense, I can take my garden with me wherever I go. I find spots, around my apartment complex and on my campus, that can serve as my personal Waldens. Places I can go for solace and a silent prayer.

Why I am a Mormon

I have friends who've assumed that since my parents are Mormons and I was "born a Mormon," that I really had no choice in the matter. Couldn't be further from the truth. I actively choose to believe, and I have to act on personal faith all the time. Living the life of a disciple, the life that Jesus Christ would have me live, is an exacting standard-for anyone. I'd have given up on it a long time ago if I didn't want to be a Mormon with my whole heart. I know that I can only become who I want to become with a lot of help. First of all, God's help. He sent his Only Begotten Son that humankind, all of His children, would be blessed, and understood by at least one Person, and suffered and atoned for. Do I remember and rejoice in what Jesus did for me, do I let His light bring rays of hope into every day of my life? Well, I try. I'm nowhere near the best Mormon, nowhere near the best Christian, but know that what matters is that I'm doing my best-even if I have to remind myself of that frequently, whenever pride or self-pity creeps in. When God helps me see that I've been angry, or jealous, or thoughtless, I make amends and regain what I've lost through sin. Yes, there is wrong and right, and there is sin and I commit sins, and there are mistakes and I make them, but I'm so grateful that God has never turned His back on me, and He never will. I believe and put into practice the scriptures: "Repent, repent and be saved" and "drink from the living waters." I've met people of many religions and walks of life, and many of the best have been those not of my faith. I know that anyone will be lifted higher if she or he heeds the call of the Savior to "come follow me" by becoming a member of His Church, that he restored in our days through a prophet of God, to be everything that His Church was to His disciples when He and his apostles walked the earth. Find out more, feel free to ask me any questions about my beliefs, give the Word a chance to work in your life

How I live my faith

I try to treat everyone that I meet with respect, and as a friend. I do my utmost to be a good husband, someday soon a good father, and a true friend. I get involved in my neighborhood and community as much as I can-I've taught English to refugees, participated in the Boy Scouts as a boy, all the way up to an Eagle service project and as a mentor to current Scouts . A lot of times it's something much more simple, such as being a good listener for a neighbor to talk to, before I go back cleaning my yard or weeding my garden. For two years of my life, it was full-time, as a missionary. I went somewhere far away: Ulan Bator, Mongolia, but I would have done the same thing had I been asked to serve somewhere much more nearby and "mundane." I spent much of my time there teaching Mormon beliefs, because those principles do change lives. The restored gospel empowers those who choose it. I also taught English Monday through Friday, in Mongolian public and private schools, government offices, and local businesses. I helped dig latrines and set up gers (the nomad tents made of felt that most people there still live in). Though I've returned to my own homeland, I remain an advocate and friend to the country of Mongolia, and any of the wonderful people from there who come here to visit or to stay. I've recently moved, so I've only attended my current congregation for a few Sundays. Erica and I are looking forward to getting more and more involved.