Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Happy Birthday Sister Payne!

Hey All!

It's Sister Payne's Birthday TODAY!!


Please email her, or send her a little card if you haven't done so already. Her contact information is on the right sidebar!


"Lives of great men all remind us we can make our lives sublime, and departing, leave behind us footprints in the sands of time." - Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

A great big happy hello to you Family, Friends, and Fans --

Your commitment this fine week is to read "May We So Live" by President Monson, and apply it in your lives.

Hopefully that link works.

That and much other parts of this email are in honor of Ashleigh - one year tomorrow - where does the time go? Allow me to share with you a couple brief lessons Ashleigh's life has taught me. The first is that I have long had a fear of being average ... I have felt for some time that ... I'm awesome, for lack of a better word, and because of that I must spend my time on this earth doing just absolutely awesome things. That has led me to want to become the first woman in the NBA, to want to be a comedian, a screenwriter, a novelist, a rockstar. I have learned that we are not WHAT we do - we are HOW we do what we do. For example, Ashleigh lived a simple life, but she did so extraordinarily. She was an outstanding person, in every aspect - every role she fulfilled she did so to the enth degree. She was not average, and yet she wasn't famous or a millionaire. That taught me a great lesson in how I live my life.

The other lesson is that we must each find out for ourselves the role that Heavenly Father expects us to play in this life. It will not be the same, for we are each invidividuals and God has created us for a unique purpose. One person may be destined to bring light to the world through science, another through politics, another through raising a wonderful family, another through preaching the gospel, etc etc. It's up to us to strive to find out what our talents are, use our agency to pursue a course that will be most beneficial and please our Heavenly Father, and then give it all we've got, so at the end we can all say, as Ashleigh did, that we've done what God asked us to do and we don't have any regrets. 2 Tim 4:7.

Other lessons I have learned this week - our agency is like money. If we use our money wisely, we will never be limited by how we can spend it. We'll always have a plethora of options. If we blow our money, we no longer can choose what we spend it on. So it goes with our agency - if we use it wisely we'll always have a number of great options to choose from. If we don't, we'll be enslaved to a choice not of our choosing. Think the Word of Wisdom -- if we choose to follow it, we can choose to do a number of things with our great health. But if we choose to smoke, and get lung cancer, how many choices are taken out of our hands!

I've also learned the importance of scripture study -- not just reading, but really studying! I was reading Mosiah 3 and 4 one morning and thinking "Y'know, I would've avoided a lot of pitfalls if I just would have had this stuff etched onto my memory and into my heart!" That comes through truly feasting upon the words of Christ -- when we study every day, we'll remember those things because we'll have just read them! We'll be able to hold fast amidst the loud noise of the world. Reading in the morning has really helped too - because then what I just read is on my mind throughout the day, as opposed to right before I go to bed and then I go to sleep and forget it all by morning. It really has made a huge impact.

I've been making an extra effort to recognize and follow the Spirit. It has paid off a couple times -- little instances like when we are impressed to talk to someone, and they blow us off but then someone else walks up and talks to us. To think what would have happened if we just kept walking and never stopped for that first person! Or also, in a lesson with a less-active the other day, we were going to teach the 10 virgins parable ... it is what we had prepared, but right as we pulled up I kept thinking "sacrament ... sacrament" .... so we taught sacrament, and it was a totally spiritual lesson, and she was at church on Sunday. Miracles happen everyday in the mission field.

We had 15 people at our English class - that's tripled since our first one! In a lesson this week Prague told us he really felt the Holy Ghost, even though it was just his living room. That was rad. And Jean Max told us in a lesson to be sure that we gave him a commitment before we left. Cool, right? Jean Max is being interviewed tonight for his baptism tomorrow. I know all will go well!

I had a dream about Joseph Smith swashbuckling some zombies. Don't even ask. We went tracting this week - only like 2 people answered their doors. I had escovitzch fish this week, and didn't hate it. Tonight Sis. Ockey is making me a custom birthday dinner - she basically took my order - so we're having lobster, mashed potatoes, steamed veggies and creme brulee for dessert! Am I excited? Oh yes.

We meet the coolest people ever here. One guy we met yesterday, a less active named Joanel -- well, he's been prepared to be brought back to church. He's been out for YEARS because he made some bad mistakes, it made him ashamed, and he quit coming. He says he always has known the church is true, but he couldn't bring himself to come back. In our lesson, he kept saying how happy he was to see us and how he can't wait to come to conference this weekend. He just kept saying "I'm ready... I'm ready" ... coolest! Haitians are so rad, p.s I'm gonna miss the heck outta them.

I've got 18+ songs now that are complete with lyrics and melody and I've recorded the sound bytes on my digital camera so I don't forget them when I get home. It's ridiculous, some days I write three songs in one day! There's neverending inspiration out here, and I'm grateful to Heavenly Father for letting me keep something I love to do so much.

A mission is the best time to receive personal revelation. And that's all I'm gonna say about that.

I leave you with the scripture of the day:

2 cor 4:5, 8-10

5 For we apreach not ourselves, but Christ Jesus the Lord; and ourselves your bservants for Jesus’ sake.

8 We are atroubled on every side, yet not distressed; we are perplexed, but not in bdespair;

9 aPersecuted, but not forsaken; cast down, but not bdestroyed;

10 Always bearing about in the body the dying of the Lord Jesus, that the life also of Jesus might be made manifest in our body.

I love you all! Enjoy the pictures, we just took them a couple hours ago at cabbage beach on paradise island.

<3 Sister Payne

Oh. Ps here are some lyrics to a song I wrote about Ashleigh on 9.16.10.

It's called Carry On.


the seconds tick away on that watch you gave to me

time stares me in the face

i know im out here cause that's what you would have told me to do

if only i could tell you


its hard to believe you're really gone

hard to believe its been so long

its hard to believe but your memory

it carries on and we carry on

carry on


you know im glad that - that you got to see me play

im glad i got to say goodbye

you know i wish that - that i can live a life half as great

as the one you left behind



and everytime i check the mail i remember that night at the hospital

sometimes i wish i could forget

and everytime i hear wonderwall i wonder why this life has to be so hard

you were so young - and had so much

and utah will always feel so cold to me

but arizona will always hold your legacy

you live on

rock on

and save a place for me


four faces - they still shine with your light

a light brighter than the sun

their handprints are - reminders of an angel we knew

who went back home



even though you're not here you're not far

we always say you were, but you are.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

From Sister Payne to You!

Well Hello There Family, Friends, and Fans --

Welcome to the September 20th edition of Sister Payne's missionary musings. I hope you will find this both educational and entertaining. Or at least time consuming.

First off, we had a double dip this weekend - both Clarissa and Prague were baptized! It was thoroughly enjoyable. We had the entire Haitian Coalition out in full force at Prague's baptism - lots of support. It was a good week. I'd like to have that happen more often. I have a real testimony of two things: the first, that baptisms are just the beginning. Before your mission or in the MTC you think baptisms are just it - its what its all about. Really though, when I'll be REALLY REALLY stoked is when I come back a year from now and all our converts are still active and fulfilling their callings. Second, that this is the Lord's work - not ours. We haven't done anything to find any of these people, they've all been brought to us. I'm okay with that. I'm happy to know the Lord trusts me enough to send His children my way. Prague's roommate Jean Max has a baptism date as well - for the 28th. He was at the baptism, and at church, and is really looking forward to it. Apparently, people from Jeremie Chambellan Haiti are just the coolest.

When we teach them, we have to bring a translator. We've been bringing Sis. Dauphin - an amazing woman who seriously has Emma Smith like trials. She was kidnapped on her mission in Haiti. And she was raised in a very cold adoptive family. And her husband is less active, and she had a companion who held her at knife point on her mission and ran away like seven times, and she had tons of very close friends die in the earthquake in port au paix. Through it all, she's stellarly active, has such a strong testimony, and has gone out teaching with us every single day this week. She is SO awesome. People like her are why my mission is the best mission in the world.

What else what else ... I had a bunch of killer ants attack my legs this week during a lesson. I looked like a leper. That was unfortunate. I learned that 70% of male RMs have temple marriages, whereas 5% of guys who don't serve missions have temple marriages. That was a staggering statistic. We had one promising investigator tell us that his pastor told him we're a cult and worship Joseph Smith so he refuses to meet with us now. We had another promising investigator tell us she doesn't want to meet with us anymore because "everything she wanted to know about the church she found on the internet". There is always a struggle here.

We had a great church service yesterday. Sacrament meeting was inspiring, as a young man gave a talk then his mom got up and said that up until that morning he'd told his parents he wasn't gonna talk - he refused - but that they'd been praying and they knew the Lord softened his heart that he woke up Sunday morning and said, okay ... I'm speaking. It was a really moving morning.

I've been working on increasing my charity. I really do feel like it needs to be my #1 priority at this point, and it is going to help solve a lot of the problems I've been having. Increased love for the Lord = increased love for His children = increased love for the work. As a missionary, you don't have any external motivators. At home you go to work to get paid, or you do something to be rewarded externally in some way, like go to school to get the degree. That doesn't exist out here - you need to be completely internally motivated. So I've been thinking alot how I can do that.. it seems foreign to me. But I realized my #1 internal motivator is love - the love I have for my family, for learning, for music, for those in my life - it inspires me to work hard and to pursue things. So if I can have that same passion and love, but have it more like the pure love of Christ - I can be really successful.

1 cor 13:1 Though I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, and have not acharity, I am become as sounding brass, or a tinkling cymbal.

Love is the answer!

Okay your commitments this week are VERY IMPORTANT. General conference is coming (I CANT WAIT). So your 1st commitment is to watch all four session (5 if you're a priesthood holder). Tivo it, do whatever you need to WATCH all of them. 2nd commitment is equally as important - write down 5 questions that you really want to know the answers to, then take notes during conference and FIND YOUR ANSWERS! I can testify from personal experience, this works. It changed the way I look at conference - it helped me so much - inspired me so much. I cannot wait for conference I'm counting down the days, because I have burning questions about my life and about the gospel and about the future that I need answers to, and I know the Lord will answer them through his servants.

Other scriptures of the week include:

1 cor 9:16 For though I preach the agospel, I have nothing to glory of: for bnecessity is laid upon me; yea, woe is unto me, if I cpreach not the gospel!

and Gal 1:10 For do I now apersuade men, or God? or do I seek to bplease men? for if I yet cpleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ.

To go along with that, a quote:

"there is no mortal man that is so much interested in the success of a missionary when he/she is preaching the gospel as the Lord that send him/her to preach to the people who are the Lord's children" - Lorenzo Snow.

Music is a must. I have written a ridiculous amount of songs and will continue to do so. We're off to the beach.

Have a great week everyone. The church is true!


Sister Payne


4025: sis smith's a hasidic mormon

4028: hayley the brave's motto

4034: beautiful bahamas

4053: us with clarissa

4067: us with prague

4070: sis smith doing her best robert deniro

lyrics of the week from a future album i will record that is all inspired by tv a movies called "raised on television" ;)

this one's called "you've got mail"

written 7.5.10


im livin in your letters

every word puts air into my lungs

im tryin not to show it but i

wish that i could hear the words rollin' off your tongue

the keys are cold

tryin to hold my entire heart and soul

so much empty space

but all i wanna do is see your face


growin up i always dreamed about

the kinda man id write home about


i wanted it to be you - i wanted it to be you so badly

i wanted it to be you - i wanted it to be you so badly


you know what they say

enough time will wound all hearts

there's some truth anyway

the longer the time spent that we're apart

they say it never works

fallin' in love a different way

but then you still my heart and baby

i don't really care what they say


cant wait til i finally look in your eyes

as you wipe away my tears

and tell me not to cry



Saturday, September 18, 2010

JDRF Walk to cure Diabetes!

Sister Payne's awesome neice Summer was diagnosed with diabetes at just four years old.

Diabetes means more than just getting shots for the rest of your life.

Learn more about it, and use this LINK to donate to our fundraising

team. We are dedicated to helping researchers find a cure.