Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Butterfield Stage/Temecula Valley YSA Week 2 - Remembering the Christ in Christmas...

This last week was so great. We had lots of opportunities to teach and meet with members of our ward. I am so blessed to be serving where I am. The people here are incredible. The members in our ward are so focused and willing to help us missionaries. We had a great Christmas! The members really took care of us and it was a blessing to talk to the family! Thank you to all that sent cards and packages! It means so much! 
The only downside to the week is I have been really sick. I have been sick on and off for the last 6 months. I got some new medicine that should help. It's definitely made it harder to work, but I feel like that's just the missionary life.
This last week I put a lot more time into learning about Christ, it being Christmas and all. I was frustrated being sick because it made it really hard to really get engaged in my studies. I was really bummed to be sick and generally just felt bad for myself and not being home, but I really felt the atonement play a strong role in my week. I have just been fed up with being sick for so long and I wanted to be healed now. As I prayed and prayed and got a blessing, I got exactly what I needed, not what I wanted. Funny how that ALWAYS happens. I received more peace and comfort and strength to help me deal with being sick and get through it. We can't expect Heavenly Father to change His will for our wants. That is absolutely contrary to our purpose of being here on earth. However, we do have a Savior. Jesus Christ was born so that we could make it back to our Father in Heaven. He made it possible for us to make it through our trials. Honestly, we will always be struggling with something. It's hard. A lot of God's children will live their entire lives struggling with one specific thing. A lot of the times we want to say, "That's not fair. Why do I have it like this and that person doesn't? Why do they have it better? It's not fair that life is this hard." If you ever feel tempted to say that, I want you to picture Christ (who was perfect) in the Garden of Gethsemane saying, "You're right. It's not fair." It wasn't fair that Christ suffered anything at all! But He did. Because He loves you. The first verse of the Book of Mormon says it best. Nephi says the word 'afflictions'. If you look at the foot note for that word it says, "Blessing; Gifts of God". THAT'S RIGHT! Your struggles are blessings because they make you better. And when it gets hard, you can turn to Christ. Because He already suffered it and knows how you feel and is willing to do everything possible to help you. Christmas is much more than acknowledging Christ was born. But we also need to think about what that means to us.
I love this gospel. I love Jesus Christ. I love my family. I love the blessing I have to be a missionary. This is Christ's church on the earth today! I love you!
Elder Kapp

1. Christmas Morning...
2. Christmas with Ian

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