"You will be an official representative of the Church. . . . Your purpose will be to invite others to come unto Christ . . . Greater blessings and more happiness than you have yet experienced await you as you humbly and prayerfully serve the Lord in this labor of love among His children. We place our confidence in you." Thomas S. Monson

Monday, April 21, 2014

Are you willing to sacrifice being more effective for being united?

Oh! I completely forgot to describe our service project this week!
Our neighbor's brick oven broke, so Elder Bile and I decided to go
help the mason rebuild it on Wednesday!  4.16.14

Moving 200 bricks was a workout!  Goodness I'm out of shape!

This was the easy part for us!
Well, I don't want to sound like a broken record, but it really amazes me how the time flies.  Honestly this past week has flown by again.  I don't have terribly much time today, but I just wanted to share a quick lesson that I have learned from this past week.  It has already changed my vision of everything so much.

So, just to begin, as missionaries for the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints we work in companionships of two.  We spend ALL of our time with our companion.  From when we wake up at 6 am and go to bed at 10 pm, we are always together, except in the bathroom of course. We also sleep in the same room, so we're still together from 10 pm to 6 am.  As with all relationships, this much togetherness can lead to some discord and sometimes it takes a bit of time to talk together and work it out. Well, sure enough, this arrived for Elder Bile and me.

As I sought counsel from our leaders to help us resolve the problem, the response came in the form of a question.  "Are you willing to sacrifice being more effective for being united?"  This simple question changed my whole perspective on the current situation.  In fact, it realigned all of my priorities in the work in which I am engaged.  Not only in this work, but in the rest of my life as well.

As I've reflected on this question, it's turned out a bit like this. If we are united, we will have quality in our relationship and work. If we are effective, we may have lots of useless quantity that may be nothing but hollowness.  If we are both united and effective, we will have quality quantity.  However, when it comes down to it, unity is more important than anything else.

The more that I've thought about it as well, the more that I see that it applies to every relationship that I will have in my life, most importantly with my own spouse and family in the future.  I have been very grateful for this new knowledge and vision that God has given me, and it has been just another testimony for me that it is through trials that we grow, through "Mountains to Climb" that we reach higher.

Anyways, today, we had the Lomé Stake Easter Soccer Tournament.  I am exhausted and sunburned, but it was a blast.  Our missionary team ended up in the final where we lost 1-0.

after my pre-match warmups

Just before the starting whistle
from our first round game

another from our first round game
I switched to attacker for our semifinal game.  Someone was tired, but still wanted to play, so we switched.  We also had to switch our jerseys due to previous color conflicts. 
from the semi final

another from the semi final
Our team picture from this morning 4.21.14

I love you all and wish a very inspiring week!

Avec amour,
Elder Jenkins
Pigeons grow super fast!  This was one week from hatching day!  4.16.14
Easter sunrise.  There was a church that decided to do a fanfare
parade by our house at 5:20, so I was able to go up on the roof and
get good pictures.
Zoomed out
Thought these clouds were cool!
The staining process.  Foster Clark's is kind of like Crystal Light, but different
Yeah, brown eggs don't work too well with staining
After shelling and staining again
Easter breakfast!  4.20.14
The Primary's Easter presents!
Inside 4.20.14
Hahaha I don't really have a caption for this.  BON VOYAGE!
I made chicken noodle soup this week!  Elder Donadier LOVED it!  He
asks for it all the time now.  PLUS, one of the stores had CAPRI
Haha not really sure what this means.  It's painted on the wall of
one of our investigator's house.  the translation is: "You want or you
don't want?"

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