elder caleb greaves

Holding to the Iron Rod in Germany

Finally productive again…

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I just want to thank my amazing home ward for all the Christmas cards and well wishes, even though I was there for like 3 weeks ever. It makes me so happy. Thanks so much for thinking of the missionaries!

Nothing much has changed yet again. It did snow, so that was cool. Just slipping and sliding all over the place. NO don’t panic I don’t need new shoes. We have not found very much lately, and by that I mean we haven’t gone finding, and also not-too-surprisingly, we haven’t found people. But today – a P-day, no less – we found 2 people and a few really good contacts (that just means they couldn’t make an appointment on the street, but we can still call and stop by). So that was a good little booster.

We announced that John would be baptized a week from yesterday, and the ward was SUPER stressed. Because they’re German. It was actually kinda cute. I felt guilty for a while, because they said we didn’t give them enough notice, but then I remembered that we told our ward mission leader (who is awesome and wasn’t freaking out) and a family in ward council and a member of the branch presidency, but just no one had actually believed he would actually progress and keep commitments and come to church and stuff, so they didn’t really pay attention to the excited little missionaries. So now I just think it’s funny. Besides. We already planned EVERYTHING. Like, we still had to pick out songs by the end of church and that was it. Germans’ number one concern every time there’s a baptism is clothing. In Germany they wear white pants, white shirt, white tie, even when you’re the one getting baptized, so you can’t just pull a onesie out of the closet. (We ended up just pulling out those things out of the closet anyway, so I don’t know what the big deal was.) And I’m not exaggerating when I say they were freaking out. These are normally logical, stoic germans, but I’m not joking, a few of the Relief Society were close to tears because they couldn’t make food in time. On the plus side, this ward has been ridiculously nice to John, considering they speak different languages and the never thought he was going to get baptized anyway. He’d just been to church twice (three times this last Sunday) and a few older ladies got him little Christmas gifts to match the missionaries’ gifts. I loved that.

Another little thing I noticed today about humility and how it relates to confidence in the example of Jesus Christ, the most humble being ever to walk the Earth.

In John 16:33, shortly before He begins to suffer in Gethsemane, He tells the apostles–who were surely troubled because Christ kept telling them of what was to come–He tells them to be of good cheer, He has overcome the world. He speaks of the creation of the Atonement in the past tense, a done deal. He still had to suffer more than anyone ever has multiplied by the billions of people on Earth, and He already knows he’s going to do it, and do it perfectly. Sometimes we feel that would be arrogant, but He knew he could do it, because that is why He was here, so He would do it, because He loves us. I’m convinced that if He even considered the possibility of failure, He would have been overcome. But He didn’t consider it. He single-handedly won he battle against Satan, and made it possible for us to win our own personal battles, as long as we turn to Him.

I love you guys!
Elder Greaves

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