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Hi I'm Matt

I grew up in a small farm town in the US. I'm an Eagle Scout. I graduated high school with an Associate Degree. I'm a Mormon.

About Me

I'm from a Mormon family of six with two brothers and a sister, and I grew up with them in a relatively small farm town in the US. I enjoy archery, photography, reading, writing, sparring, behavioral science, and video games. I went to college while attending high school, and I was able to graduate with an Associate Degree about two years before most kids my age. I did martial arts for about four years. I learned a lot of Tae Kwon Do, and a little of Judo, Jiu Jitsu, and Hopkido, during my time. I loved to spar. I have participated in a handful of martial art tournaments and medaled in all of them. In have never gotten less than a silver medal for sparring, and a bronze medal for forms. I have a trophy for taking first overall in my age group for a multistate tournament. I considered doing Mixed Martial Arts, but it wouldn't have worked out too well with my schooling schedule, so I decided not to. I've done some web design using HTML and CSS, and I'm trying to teach myself C++ and JavaScript so I can learn game programming. I'm also learning how to make jewelry by hand. I've been involved in the scouting programs since I was eight (Cub Scouts), and have earned the rank of Eagle Scout in the Boy Scouts of America program. For my Eagle Scout project I hosted a mental health awareness fair with a focus on Suicide and Depression. I also hold doors for practically everyone, everywhere I go. I started doing so when I was young, and now it's a habit.

Why I am a Mormon

I was born into a Mormon family, but I decided to continue being a Mormon in large part because of a blessing I received when I was younger. Because I focused so heavily on my schooling, I ended up meeting a lot of atheists, one particularly devout Baptist, and a teacher who was from a religion very similar to that of the Baptist religion (he was also quite devout). Many of these individuals were incredibly vocal about their beliefs (or lack thereof) and were constantly challenging the beliefs of my religion. When a large portion of your peers are actively challenging your faith, and another large portion of your peers who are from your religion are openly not keeping its standards, it can be easy to question your faith. The blessing I was given was a special blessing each individual has the opportunity to receive in our church, called a Patriarchal Blessing. What is said in this blessing is different for every individual, and every individual feels differently about their blessing, but mine was incredible to me. As soon as the blessing started, I felt one of the most intense feelings I have ever felt in my life. The most accurate way I could think of to describe it at the time was that it felt like I was immersed in a swimming pool of warmth and light. It was something intangible, but so immensely powerful that it almost felt like you could reach out and touch it (or swim in it). I was almost completely overwhelmed by the feeling at the time, so I couldn't even focus on what was being said. It was so strong that I wanted to open my eyes, but I didn't because I was half scared that I would see an angel or something in the room with me. I truly felt the Lord's Spirit through that blessing, and I have felt His Spirit many times since, though less strongly. But now, anytime something comes along and challenges my faith, I remember that blessing, and the feeling I had during that blessing, and it reassures me the church is true. It acts as an anchor for my faith.

How I live my faith

I am always willing to serve in my community, so I end up helping with a lot of things around town. Anytime someone is doing a service project I like to try to help out, and since the scouting program is so big where I'm from it gives me a lot of opportunities to help with Eagle projects. I have helped out with cleaning and refurbishing parks in town, building practice rodeo grounds, building bookshelves and collecting books for local schools, cleaning our chapel and maintaining the grounds for it, painting and repainting fire hydrants, volunteering for a program called SMART (Substance Misuse and Abuse Reduction Team), mowing and shoveling lawns for neighbors, volunteering to help with booths during my city's holiday carnivals, playing bingo and visiting with the elderly, helping carry a disabled man up a mountain with his family, installing and painting fences for community buildings, and a lot more. I also help as much as I can in smaller ways, be it holding the door for people, giving rides to friends, helping classmates who are struggling, or seeing if someone needs help with car trouble. For my church, I am able to go hometeaching, help out on the church owned dairy farm, and when the younger boys are shorthanded I am able to help them out and assist them in carrying out their duties. I also get to help out with some of the youth programs in my ward, helping them prepare for a camping trip, or a fireside every once in a while. I also attend my church meetings regularly. On Sundays, I usually attend a missionary preparation class in the morning, then go to my Sacrament meeting. After Sacrament, I attend a class for the men in our ward, and then go to a class for the adults who aren't teaching one of the youth classes for the last hour of our church's meetings. When the opportunities arise I attend my local stake meetings, and view the meetings broadcasted globally for the whole church.