You’re Supporting Satan

by | Jul 3, 2023

Abstract of an angry man

Fasten Your Seatbelt (No. 20)

From his talk, Peacemakers Needed

Part of the President Nelson Series

All blue quotes by President Russell M. Nelson (unless otherwise noted).


Oh goodness, these are not words you often hear from President Nelson!

I need President Nelson’s ‘Peacemaker’ talk every day. We have his quotes hanging on our fridge. As much as I WISH to reshare the prophet’s words today from on top of some pedestal – I’m NOT on that pedestal. Forgive my boldness. Everyone I’ve ever met needs a daily or weekly dose of this talk to undo years of conditioning and the normalizing of contention, crankiness, resentment, fault-finding, gossip, and negativity. We’re addicted to it.

Plus, we were brought up with it. We have deeply entrenched customs and fallen traditions of how we interact with each other.

President Nelson does not mince words here.

A Page Out of Where?

This quote snapped me straight up in my chair.

The most important and transcendent event ever recorded on earth…is the Atonement and Resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ. One of the best ways we can honor the Savior is to become a peacemaker.

The Savior’s Atonement made it possible for us to overcome all evil—including contention. Make no mistake about it: contention is evil! Jesus Christ declared that those who have “the spirit of contention” are not of Him but are “of the devil, who is the father of contention, and [the devil] stirreth up the hearts of men to contend with anger, one with another.” Those who foster contention are taking a page out of Satan’s playbook, whether they realize it or not. “No man can serve two masters.” We cannot support Satan with our verbal assaults and then think that we can still serve God.

It never occurred to me that contention was something to be repented of because it is evil and is of the devil. And through contention, we serve the devil.

Oh, and then add “Satan’s playbook,” and we “support Satan” with our verbal assaults?

These are candid words I cannot get out of my head.

I needed to be reminded of how damaging contention is to our soul’s stature and power. For example, I’m on Twitter with many detractors and need to float above their baiting and unkindness.

Hopefully, we can change this in every corner of our lives and move to a better place together.

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2 Comments

  1. Stephen M Fenn

    The word “foster” really jumped out to me in one of my times listening to this talk. It’s not a word we use much, except in relation to fostering children. One of the definitions is “to give parental care to”. That really fits well. For too many of us, contention is our baby and, oh how we take care that it survives! Another definition is “to help the growth or development of.” Synonyms are, to promote, cultivate, nurture, aid, and abet. That phrase has caused me some deep introspection, and recognition that I often am in the fostering business. And, when I am, I’m using Satan’s playbook. In my sports playing days, our playbook was created out of scouting of our opponent, searching for weaknesses, and seeing how we could take advantage of them. We all know just how to trigger those we interact with most often. We know what will set them off, and how we can use that to gain the upper hand in arguing and contending.
    I have this talk on repeat in my car. I’ve probably listened to it 30 times and I can tell it has changed my behavior in noticeable ways. It seems like each time I hear it I find some new application. Thanks for your observations.

    Reply
    • Shawnie Cannon

      Oh goodness! Yes, 30 times and counting. I love your observations with the word “foster.” That is spiritually briliant and spoke to my heart as I read it. Thank you for echoing back what I need to hear over and over in a meaningful, new way.

      Reply

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