Elder Zachary Payne

Elder Zachary Payne

Monday, January 13, 2014


Hmm well it's been a good week this week. So I'm going to be completely honest: I had it all written down in my planner about the big b-day week, but last week in emails I totally spaced it. So I wrote dad a letter, which hopefully he's gotten that by now. I was gonna have one of our dinners send a pic to mom and keith for their b-days but I spaced that too haha. Lousy excuses, I know. I don't even know how old keith is now...probably like 30 by now hahaha maybe not. Anyway, thanks for all you guys do and the encouragement you give! Thanks for the email mom and I'll keep those things in mind. Consecration!! Yeah! We had a zone meeting this week and at the very end we all signed our lives away, quite literally. Our zl's passed out certificates to each of us declaring that we are willing to give and "acceptable sacrifice" and "make baptism our magnificent obsession" ...and then we signed it and had two witnesses sign it haha. Such a simple activity but it really put the heat on us and made us think...is this really what we want? I should have gotten a pic of it haha maybe next week. But I signed it by gosh. And I signed my mission papers. and I've signed my ministerial certificate, and tons of baptismal records....I'm literally signed away! Just a good and direct reminder of the promises I've already made to the Lord, whether in the temple, at baptism, when I received the priesthood, or personal covenants and promises made weekly through the sacrament. I'm not really "free to chose" anymore, because I've already chosen. It's hard! but it's worth it.

Let me brag about my district for a minute haha. For zone meeting I was asked to prayerfully set a monthly baptismal goal and finding goal for January as a district. Well that's normal, we do that every month. Just like pres Monson said, if we don't set goals then our performance can't be measured and our progress won't be either. Anyway, our goal for this month is 7 baptisms and 20 new investigators. There's three companionships in the district, six total elders. What we've been doing recently is focusing on finding and teaching families...whole families. Well guess what? In our area we found a family to teach! I might have mentioned them last week...Nati (mom), Abdi Ana & Betsy (kids), and Tino (dad) who has been gone so we haven't started teaching him yet. Awesome family, and they'd make great mormons! Anyway, our contribution in our own area has been 6 new investigators this month. The Gunnison elders found 10 last week alone haha. Manti elders have been able to find a couple. We're up to 22 new investigators so far! And January isn't even half over. We've scheduled baptismal interviews for our 5th and 6th baptisms so far this month!! It's such a blessing to be in leadership simply for the reason that I get to see a bigger picture, as if my area and teaching pool gets a little bigger. I get to see the miracles that not only happen in my area, but in the others as well. I get to see the blessings and fruits of repentance and baptism, even when we haven't had one in our own area for a long time. It's so motivating!

And then there's the YSA. It's good to be back and among them! Sooo much more energy. It's been kinda scattered since we're just covering YSA for this transfer only, and with the winter break everything practically dissolved. But we managed to stay in contact with most of the sisters past investigators! One of them, Shelby, has had some crazy experiences in the last few years. Her mom has gone through cervical cancer, breast cancer, thyroid cancer, and just the other day she told us they found some other cancer somewhere else. Good grief!! Needless to say, Shelby has really had her eyes opened throughout her life, and she's very mature and her heart is just wide open right now. It's a big blessing for her, and it's been really cool to help her see why. She's catholic and almost got baptized in the past, but she wasn't quite ready.

Among our other YSA adventures this week, we picked up a new investigator named George. It was kinda weird because his LDS friends invited us all over for a dinner (right after our regular dinner haha) and they invited like 12 other people too! So we all ate chicken alfredo and then all of them sat and watched us teach George for the first time haha. He's definitely a timid guy, so I think he definitely felt a lot of pressure. He agreed to meet again though haha so we'll tone things down next time and see how he progresses. Also, this week we were knocking through some apartments and we came across an ex-landlord going to help out a YSA girl having a very mild asthma attack. She lost the hose to her inhaler thing and was having a really hard time breathing! Imagine doing like 25 push ups and then breathing through only a plastic straw, and that's probably just about how she felt. Anyway, we gave her a blessing and she had tears and we said a few little comments and jokes that made her laugh and we felt really bad because that messed up her breathing even more hahaha. shoot. But she was okay! right after we left, the current landlord showed up with the right equipment. Whew! Gotta love those interesting experiences. 

Hmm well we've had a bunch of other little experiences and some ups and downs, but that's about all I have time for this week! Time for a haircut! Adios guapos

Elder Payne!


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