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Hi I'm Drew

I love the rollercoaster of life. I work at an afterschool program for at-risk youth. I am a Mormon.

About Me

When I was 10 I became an orphan and was taken in by my aunt and uncle. Through the hard times I always leaned back on my faith and it always carried me through. I have fought anger, depression, emptiness, and darkness, but because I have known the anguish of the soul I also know peace, love, and joy. I currently work as the director of an after school program in a low-income housing development. My job is to teach these kids study skills, and values like honesty and nonviolence so that when the gangs present themselves as a "refuge" from the storm these children choose to be something more. I have a brother and two sisters and my parents. Some people ask me if it is weird to call my "aunt and uncle" my "mom and dad," but I have known them longer in this capacity than any other. They have encouraged and loved me. They taught me to stand for what I believe no matter how hard the opposition appears. They taught me to face my challenges head-on and pursue the things that I enjoy. I love to do art, especially dry media. I love to sing and perform. I love to work with kids. I love talking to my friends and hanging out with my mom (she's one of my best friends). I love going on roadtrips. I wake up each day with a smile on my face and a choice in my heart: today I will be happy. No matter what happened yesterday, happens today, or will happen tomorrow, I am going to have a good day and share that with others. Happiness is a choice and I choose it each day.

Why I am a Mormon

I was raised in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and I am so glad that I was. Over the years I have had so many impossibly difficult situations, lost so many people that I love, and felt to lost myself that had I not had my Savior to lean on in the hard times I don't know what I would be doing now. Even being raised in the church and always believing it to be true it was when I was 11 years old that I really begin to understand that I knew it was true. I was sitting in Primary (which is the children's church educational organization) and we were singing a song about Moses. There was a boy in my class who was kind of a tough kid and would never sing the songs. Today was different; this song was different. I sat there and watched this 11 year-old boy pour out his soul in song. He had tears streaming down his face, but for a moment he didn't care because he felt the Spirit of the Lord Jesus Christ. As I watched him sing, I realized that I knew that this church is true and that I never needed to doubt again. God lives and He loves and guides our lives. I have had many opportunities where I have been at the cross roads of faith and the road of something else. When I was in Brazil it became apparent that I would need to come home earlier than I expected and I was so nervous to come home because I knew that some of the poeple in my life would judge me and it would hurt. The only reason I came home instead of pretending I was okay and continuing on my mission is because when I prayed about I knew that I needed to come home. I was embarrassed and ashamed that I could not finish my mission and I was so worried that others would feel the same, but I prayed for strength and have received it. I am constantly seeing the blessings of my good decisions in my life, especially after the difficult choices when I choose to submit my will to God's. I believe because I have tasted the fruits of this church and they have brought me more joy than I imagined.

How I live my faith

Service is taught as one of the highest forms of friendship and love and as one of the greatest ways to find happiness in this life. Several times a year I participate in city wide, church wide, and especially service in my family. It is hard to imagine life without being able to selflessly do things for others because I so often find that as I am serving others and helping them I am actually learning about myself. It's amazing how the things in our lives prepare us to serve and the other way around. I have worked in a daycamp for kids for years and we had to plan and carry out all of the activities we did with the kids each day. I was asked to spend eight months planning weekly social and spiritual events for young, single adults. All of the assignments in the church are nonpaid and completely voluntary, but we believe that even an assignment like this one comes from God and so I accepted it. My job at the daycamp gave me the basic skills I needed to plan meaningful opportunites for young adults to interact and grow in their faith. I served as a missionary in Brazil and paid my own way. I had spent years saving money and studying the scriptures and the words of the prophets so that when the time came and the opportunity presented itself, I would be ready. I loved teaching and studying, but what I really loved about being a missionary was that moment when you looked into someone's eyes and saw that they were happy and free because of the message we brought them. I am far from perfect and I strugglr every day to become more like Jesus Christ. Sometimes I feel like I am getting close, but then I realize I am being prideful and so I try to humble myself and remember how far I still need to go. I still study the scriptures and pray every day to find the guidance strength I need to continue to become what I could be. I pray for opportunities to serve others and bring them happiness. I pray that others will see me and know that I know this church is true.

What is being a Mormon like?

Drew
Honestly, sometimes it feels so hard to make these choices when you see your friends and the people you respect doing things drastically different. When I see a decreasing number of people expressing a devotion to a God, any God, and more people pulling away to try to squeeze deity out of the world, it hurts sometimes. I know that God lives and loves me, personally. Being a Mormon makes me so happy. Some people criticize ouit church for having too many rules, but I connect it to telling a child not to touch a hot stove. The child that touches the stove is burned and loses the use of their hand for a period of time. The child who is warned and avoids the danger never has to feel that pain or lose the feeling of their hands. We have a God who is looking out for us and warning us not to touch hot stoves. I feel so greatly blessed to be a Mormon because I don't know who I would be otherwise. My religious beliefs factor into almost every decision I make and so I couldn't imagine the pathway I would be on without that guiding light. Men are meant to come to earth to be tested and to be joyful. I am so happy with who I am and what I am becoming. I love being Mormon. Show more Show less