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I grew up in the church in Idaho, the youngest of my family. All of the things that have occurred in my life have led to the point I'm at now, preparing me for future life. I plan to go to BYU Idaho after my return and also take up family history. I enjoy mountain biking, some photography, some writing, and I hope to take up snowboarding and piano. Music is my life's soundtrack. As I've grown spiritually I've recognized more and more the role of my Father's plan for me. I've had many different things happen. When I was thirteen my parents divorced, leaving me to wonder in darkness what would happen next. I couldn't recognize what might even be in my future and began to really wonder at everything I had learned growing up. The questions came more seriously to my mind and I wondered more than ever if He were really there. I had grown on the testimony of my parents but there was something more than just simply growing up in the church. The answers came later. I sought Him, and through the scriptures I gained the answers I needed, finding my testimony of Him and beginning to understand more what my own purpose was. Through other events of my life in my later teens I knew what it was that I needed to do to fulfill what I had been sent to do. Beyond this I know my goals from spiritual guidance I've received. It all simply begins at prayer, nor does prayer end thereafter. It is to continually seek after that guidance.
Though I grew up in the church, growing from the testimony of my parents, I had to find out for myself at one point what these things really were and what the gospel really meant for me. Through prayer, I've gained a testimony of the truth and divinity of this gospel. Through the mission I've served in the church, I've found my true conversion in the gospel. I've found answers to my prayers through the Book of Mormon and other scriptures. I know without question this is the same church that Jesus Christ set up in his time.
God has always sent missionaries to preach His gospel so that they can know of the fullness of the gospel and the things essential to return to His presence after this life. During the time of his ministry on earth, the Lord sent his apostles out to teach the the things which He had taught them. Likewise does His church still have those that go out to share His gospel with the world. Generally younger men and women serve missions in the church. They see the effects and the great blessings that this gospel has in their lives, and so they go to share that with others.
I've really recognized a chain of events that was taking place in my life as a grew up, preparing me for the things I do now. At a point I became less active in the church from things that happened in the past and a damaged testimony, but at a point the time came to find out what I had going, through prayer and becoming more involved again. I've found my answers in the scriptures, though prayer and through the leaders in the church and my friends. Now, I'm a full-time missionary called to serve In Texas. I have a family, a congregation, and great friends that have helped me to get to this point. They gave me the support I needed to go on a mission and, though it was a step of faith in coming, it has become an incredibly rewarding experience as I've shared the gospel with others. My relationship and my faith in Jesus Christ have become far stronger as I've taken on my call as a representative of Him. I know He blesses us continually as we strive to follow him.
We know the importance of the gospel principles and ordinances in this life that are necessary to return to our Heavenly Father's presence. This work offers every one of God's children the opportunity to hear the Gospel of Jesus Christ and accept or reject it, according to their agency. It is involved with the Plan of Salvation that God laid out for us, part of it being that we believe that after death we go to a place called the spirit world. Part of it's purpose is for those who have not had the opportunity in this life to hear the gospel and will be able to there. Family history and genealogy work is done to find those who have passed on from this life, who have not yet received those essential ordinances, like baptism. Thus the work is done and the ordinances are performed by proxy in sacred temples around the world. Then those who have passed on have the opportunity to accept the work done for them. All this because God loves all of His children and want's all of them to be able to return to live in His presence.
I tend to look back frequently on my mission that I served in Texas and remember the joy I had teaching others about the gospel of Jesus Christ and the many different people I got to meet and learn more about their own religion. I've found myself relating the days I live in now to then with all of the things that I learned. It's one of my greatest journeys I've taken in life. Now that I'm back home I spend my time like many other members of the church living a normal life, working and living every day loving the gospel that I've grown up in and all that it has taught me. I've come to already love my future wife, though I don't even know her yet and I'm excited for the day when I marry her.