Transfer 10, Week 2 ..... September 1, 2014

Dear Family,

Once again this week we are just living on a different energy level. Its really quite something. 

We had mission leadership council this tuesday in Lyon. It was probably my favorite one so far. What we learned and discussed was just directly in line with what I had been praying for and pondering the whole week before. I felt really inspired and we fixed some really great goals. We discussed how the mission needs to have fresh faith. Keep doing what we already have been doing but with new energy and new faith. And the results have been incredible. 

Thursday we gave our zone training. We really struggled planning for it, but it turned out really well and both Elder Moeller and I felt like we made a lot of progress as a zone in the two hours we spent together. As a zone of 22 missionaries we discussed ridding ourselves of doubt, bolstering our desire, deciding on who we are and what we want to do and translating all of that theory into action through our plans and goals. A major focus of the training was on the new standards of excellence that President released about 3 weeks ago. The most eye opening standard is now to teach 20 lessons a week. THat is huge in our mission. Really quite rare in even the "best" areas. But very possible with better planning and diligence. Elder Moeller and I have a goal to crush that standard. We want to double in week 5. 

If there is a time in which we can accomplish that feat it would be now with the teaching pool that we have. Yesterday we did our weekly planning. We planned for 17 amis for this week. Along with 10ish members we need to follow up with on their friends they know and other projects we have going on. This is rather unheard of in our mission. We feel very overwhelmed. Never in my mission or Elder Moellers have we had so many people to teach and to worry about. I have been pondering a lot about organization. We feel like there just aren't enough days in the week. We'll be relying on the Lord a lot these next couple weeks. So today and throughout this week we'll be evaluating and adjusting our organization and efficiency techniques to see how we can adapt. (If you have any tips please feel free to send them).

Its been nice because we've seen this explosion of work in our zone as well. Our numbers have improved dramatically in the past 5 months. Which is exciting.
With our zone we have been doing a Nothing Toulouse zone challenge, where we have assigned points to the standards of excellence and altogether as a zone we are working towards a grand total. Our goal was to unify the zone and help us all work on a higher level. Its seems to be working. I've really gained a testimony of brief daily contact with others and what a huge effect that can have. This is a principle taught in Preach My Gospel, that when applied works miracles.

We did two exchanges this week. One with one of our district leaders, Elder Olsen. It was quite fun and rewarding. And we had one with the assistants on Saturday. I was with Elder Elvidge. He is english, and he and I have been friends since I arrived in Gex early this year. We had a great exchange as well and it was fun to be in the presence of a really great missionary. The real counsel I got from him was to keep learning from Elder Moeller. Who is one of the most experienced and highly skilled missionaries in the mission. And he's right. I need to keep pushing myself in all areas including my french and teaching skills.

This morning I was studying in 2 Nephi 25 about the Savior and Nephi's experience with the Savior. 
One thing that really struck me (as it as many times) the centrality of the Savior in our lives. There are no other "messiahs", or in other words, there is no other way to find relief, peace, deliverance from the problems in our lives, except through the Lord and His infinite Atonement. And surely He carries my burdens and my griefs day to day. I've really worked on in the past couple months to just trust him and choose to be happy and choose to have peace. Its often in our most stressful and difficult moments that we get to choose to be like Him. That is when we choose to forge a real Christlike character.

I love you all so very much!  Make it a great week!

Elder Montgomery