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Hi I'm Jonathan

Northern Californian, runner, trombonist, college student, aspiring high school teacher...and a Mormon

About Me

I am Jonathan. I grew up in Northern California, and enjoyed my time out there. I had friends of many different backgrounds, and it has helped me to gain perspective. Putting God and family first is my goal. I have faced challenges with anxiety, depression, epilepsy, and stuttering my speech. The power of God has helped me to know that these struggles are bearable, and that there is a wonderful purpose to my life. I am a college student at Brigham Young University. I am in the teaching program, majoring in the social sciences and minoring in English. I have a passion for helping people, and I think that it is significantly influenced by my faith in Jesus Christ. I served in Salt Lake City at the Family History Library as a missionary. It was a blessing to be there for two years and devote my time to helping people of all faiths find their ancestors. I love to play trombone and sports, especially basketball, tennis, and running. I also enjoy singing and watching theater, movies, and concerts. I ran on the cross country team in high school and played in marching band and jazz band. I am thankful for the opportunities God has given me to be involved and to get to know lots of people.

Why I am a Mormon

I am a Mormon because the gospel of Jesus Christ gives me hope. It gives me hope that I may be able to overcome and be forgiven of my sins through the Atonement of Jesus Christ. The gospel strengthens my character and leads me to do things that are right. Being a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has allowed me to meet wonderful people that I would have never been able to meet otherwise. I am a Mormon because the benefits of the gospel outweigh all of the things I must give up to be worthy of it. The gospel has allowed me to live a much better life and it has given me the power to fight through adversity.

How I live my faith

I love the gospel of Jesus Christ because it has blessed my life and the lives of many I know. It gives me hope and courage to persevere through life's challenges. During my junior and senior years of high school, life never seemed to be going right and I never really seemed to be happy. I realized after seeing medical professionals that my life was full of constant worrying because I had anxiety disorder. Having the courage to admit that I needed help required much faith in the Lord. I had to trust Him so everything could get better. After seeking help and receiving treatment, I felt ready to handle college life. Prayer, scripture study, and working with my parents and church leaders was a guiding force in my preparation to serve a full-time mission for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. On my mission, I helped people to find their ancestors at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah. I felt joy almost every day as I saw people (sometimes literally) jump up and down when they found information about one of their ancestors - be it an emancipated African-American preacher in Georgia or a Scandinavian immigrant to Wisconsin. Connecting people to their past increased my faith in God as I felt His power in helping people to their loved ones. As I finished my mission, I realized that service is a wonderful way to grow in touch with other people and with God. I feel by reaching out to others, I can find strength to overcome my own weaknesses. I've volunteered in various programs connected to the BYU campus, and I have found joy in that. From free economics tutoring to playing sports at a Youth Detention facility with troubled young men, I have found that my faith in Jesus Christ is best demonstrated by reaching out to people.

What is the Atonement of Jesus Christ? Why was it necessary for Jesus Christ to sacrifice His life?

I know that forgiveness and healing through the atoning sacrifice of Jesus Christ gives me hope and strength. As a Mormon, when I refer to the "Atonement", I mean the suffering of Jesus Christ in the Garden of Gethsemane, His death on the cross, and His glorious resurrection on the third day after His death. In my life, I have been faced with challenges, including anxiety, stuttering, and depression. But the Atonement allows me to feel relief from these struggles, even if they were caused by things out of my control. The Book of Mormon, a companion book of scripture to the Bible, tells of this all-encompassing power of Jesus' Atonement: "And he shall go forth, suffering pains and afflictions and temptations of every kind; and this that the word might be fulfilled which saith he will take upon him the pains and the sicknesses of his people. And he will take upon him death, that he may loose the bands of death which bind his people; and he will take upon him their infirmities, that his bowels may be filled with mercy, according to the flesh, that he may know according to the flesh how to succor his people according to their infirmities" (Alma 7:11-12). I find that every day I pray to God, I gain strength to overcome temptations and to repent of my mistakes and sins. I find power and insight to learn how to manage my struggles, and allow them to become a benefit to me. I feel the Atonement is the integral part of the doctrine of the LDS (Mormon) Church! Show more Show less