An article in this month’s New Era may be of interest to anyone who has been on a mission and had a companion that he or she didn’t get along with very well. In “Do-Over Companions,” the author, Devon Black, recalls his “bitter and contentious” time with a missionary companion. He is reviewing his journal entries some months later (an interesting point in itself, though he doesn’t expand on it), and he reflects on what happened, particularly his own behavior. His self-examination leads him to see his former companion in a different light, so he decides to do something to make things right. And, of course, a New Era article ensues.
I wonder how many returned missionaries could tell similar stories of former companions. A mission certainly is a crucible of experience in many areas, including interpersonal relationships. This article shows how one young man learned to develop a more mature outlook on his relationship with a fellow missionary he thought he had nothing in common with.
We can apply what he learned to our relationships with many others, particularly those we associate with in the Church. We’re all striving to be disciples of Christ, and the Lord has told us to “be one; and if ye are not one ye are not mine” (D&C 38:27). I believe that all of us, myself included (or especially), could put forth a little more effort in this regard.