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Growing up in a family with six siblings, I enjoy family life greatly and appreciate people and memories of time spent with loved ones. Since my childhood, I have many hours and days outside running and hiking, and observing the beauties of the world and the animal kingdom. Music has also enriched my life and given me an area to explore sounds and feelings through piano, classical guitar, and most recently tinwhistle. Crohn's disease has become an everyday reality for the past 11 years, bringing with it the pain and limitations I had seen in others and never thought would affect me. With all the challenges, my limited health is giving me opportunities to reflect on my blessings, deepen my sense of identity and purpose, grow in my understanding of faith and healing, and increase my compassion and empathy for others. I try to do what I can to bring my faith, talents, joys, and compassion to my work as a techincal business analyst, to my family of three children under age five, and to my community and church. In all of life I seek meaning and purpose in my joys, sorrows and pain - and I can still say, "Life is good."
I seek purpose and meaning in life, feeling deep down that there is more to my existence than what I see and hear and feel right here and now. This seeking was encouraged as I grew up in a home where faith was taught and lived. Slowly over many years as a child and young adult, I began searching on my own to find God and to discover my place and purpose in this big world. Through small and simple experiences, I have come to feel God's love and reality. The testimony and experience of Joseph Smith seeing God and Jesus Christ has become a pillar to my faith and understanding of their nature. I thought Joseph's testimony was real, but I really knew it was true from the first time I shared it with a man in Spain. I felt the power of the Holy Ghost in that moment and in many instances since. Today, I continually seek to maintain and build my faith. It's a process of thoughtfully learning the gospel and striving to live it by loving others and keeping myself clean from the many evils, addictions and deception in the world. The Church and my faith help me serve others and sacrifice for a better cause -- both of which brings me happiness and peace. It is only here in the Gospel of Christ that I find a sure hope and an unchanging anchor of what is real and meaningful.
I try to live my faith in every interaction I have with others, starting with my wife and three young children. To me, faith is action, and unless I am becoming more of the man that Heavenly Father intends me to become, my faith is empty. I hope and pray that people will feel closer to God and Christ by knowing me; that they will feel a desire to come to know God, with hope that they are loved of Him and have a wonderful potential. Keeping a 'firm brightness of hope' and cheerful optimism is another challenging way I try to live my faith. The challenges come as my health remains uncertain and as the world in general becomes more pessimistic and cynical. I believe it is true that "men are that they might have joy." I'm trying to live a joyful life. Again I would say that "life is good."