It all happened a few months ago when I found out Brian Payne taught at Boyce College. That sentence is insignificant if you don’t know who Dr. Payne is married to. He is married to Heather Payne. That sentence doesn’t matter either unless you know that she was one of the 4 original members of Point of Grace. And for most people nowadays this fact doesn’t matter anymore because who listens to Point of Grace? Well this girl knows every song, every lyric, every CD cover and “thank you” written in the back and I have sung my share of concerts in my room when I thought no one could hear my loud rendition of Circle of Friends.
So back to the “few months ago” part….I found out Heather’s husband was a professor here and I determined from that point on that I would meet her one day and relay my love of Point of Grace. Little did I know that my time would come. I saw on the chapel schedule that Dr. Payne was scheduled to preach today and I was ecstatic. You see, when other girls hung up posters of Brittany and learned every new dance from the Spice Girls, I was making up hand motions to “Keep the Candle Burning” and I was ok with that. All my stuffed animals have been with me through the process of learning to harmonize to “Who Am I” and my mom took me to the hair dresser when I laid the album cover on the table and said, “Make me look like Denise” and I still remember when one of my first church solos was “More Than Anything”.
So today, I got to chapel early. I had rehearsed my speech in my head, the part about the Spice Girls and finding out her husband worked here. (I left out the part where I stalked her a bit and found out her address) And there she was at the front of the chapel. I was like 15 minutes early so I had plenty of time to talk to her. I walked toward her and stood a little off but saw that she was in deep conversation with a lady and I couldn’t just barge in. After talking with a friend about the situation I decided to try again. I again proceeded to walk toward the front and when another woman cut in on me I had to once again pretend to look around as if I was trying to find someone rather than look embarrassed that I was once again too scared to butt in on Heather’s conversation. After talking to another friend, I decided to just go down there, make my presence known and wait for her response. And I did. I sat right in front of her and since she probably saw me make two other failed attempts to talk to her out of the corner of her eye, she graciously stopped her conversation in mid flow just to talk to me. And talk we did.
She was so sweet and I got to tell her my love of Point of Grace and how they were my first big concert to go to. And yes, I don’t really have an Arkansan accent but I am from there. And yes, we are still young with no kids but have been in seminary for the last year and a half. I got to hear how God moved her from POG when her “heart just wasn’t in it anymore” to be with her family and slow down and enjoy life in her home with her children. All in all it was like 5 minutes of a sweet conversation where I saw a real woman walking the walk. She sat in the pew while her husband preached his heart out. I see faithfulness in her, faithfulness to her God, her husband, her kids, and their ministry together. So to Heather, thank you for letting me interrupt your conversation in order to gawk at you for a minute and thank you for being the real deal.