One of my best friends from high school and her husband are mission presidents right now.
Last week she wrote about the incredible difference a good companion can make for missionaries. She talked about how one of the sister missionaries was really struggling when she came to the mission. She was assigned (you don’t choose who your companion is) to a “loving, encouraging and hard-working trainer…now this missionary is thriving—she is confident, happy and finding great satisfaction in her missionary service. And it’s all because she has a companion who has loved, encouraged, and taught her.”
Not to be dramatic, but I really think a good companion can change someone’s life, for better or for worse. They have the power, if they chose, to help instill confidence and love that will stay with their companion long after they serve their missions.
That is a powerful thing.
(I was so lucky to have the best of companions when I was serving my mission…and I still remember them all so well.)
This made me think first of all about how GRATEFUL I am for Grace’s new companion.
Look at that girl of mine who is positively glowing. That doesn’t happen in a new, unfamiliar place where you could be extremely homesick without a pretty awesome companion. I’m already forever grateful for her and all she is teaching my girl.
All these companion thoughts led me to think about other kinds of companions.
Those who have the power to change the world around them for good.
Like this companion of mine:
Oh how I adore that guy. I’ve been thinking about all the things he has taught me over the last 25 years, how much he has lifted me and buoyed me, put up with me and loved me even through all my imperfections.
Oh yes, I love that companion.
And what about these companions?:
And these ones:
They have each other’s back, and the influence I see them have on each other makes my heart swell up to the size of a bowling ball sometimes. I know that sounds dramatic but boy, I am so grateful for every phone call, every hug, every dance made up, everything shared…from inside jokes to testimonies to clothes to advice. Sometimes when I overhear them together I just can’t stop smiling. (Ok, and sometimes overhearing them makes me hopping mad because yes, they have their fair share of fighting like the dickens. But doesn’t that just make the sweetness that much sweeter when it happens?)
And what about these companions?:
(my dad and his dad)
How grateful I am that they were such good companions before my grandpa passed just not too long after this picture was taken. Oh the things he taught him! The love he spilled out! That love that spills out still, through my dad to all of us.
Yes, that companionship was a good one. And really, I believe it still is (I love to think about how those who have gone before are still our companions in many ways.)
How grateful I am for this companionship too:
My sister and I as partners in crime back when we were little (figured that was appropriate since we’re stealing pie, and pie is on the agenda for tomorrow! Oh, all the things that companionship has taught me over the years, as well as every single of my other sibling companions. Boy howdy was I ever lucky to get them!
My list could go on and on…and on again.
From the good friends who have had my back for years to the lady at the grocery store the other day who taught me so much through her silent example.
Yes, companions of all sorts and ages and stages are precious gifts.
And for today, I #givethanks for all I learn from companions.