40 Talks in 40 Days – Yes, We Can and Will Win!, Ulisses Soares

Yes, We Can and Will Win!

We must hold ever more tightly to our testimony of the gospel of Jesus Christ. Then we will win the daily battles against evil.

Before I get started I just want to point out that Ulisses is a brave man.  He uses no middle initial to make himself sound authoritative, and yet made it all the way to the presidency of the Seventy!

Second, I’m not sure who thought using Barack Obama’s “Yes, We Can” as the intro to a speech that, again; could be talking entirely about homosexual marraige (Which they lost), but I think it was in poor taste.  Not that people should never use “Yes, we Can” ever again, but it just seems cheap and trashy to work someone else’s slogan who is still known for that phrase, into a speech contrary to what that person’s beliefs are.  It would be like taking Spencer W. Kimball’s “Do It” and meshing it with sexual innuendo, awkward and not very couth.

President Thomas S. Monson once said:

Must we quote the living prophet?  It comes across as brown-nosing and scoring points rather than inspired.  Whatever.

The world can at times be a frightening place in which to live. The moral fabric of society seems to be unraveling at an alarming speed.

We’ve covered this before, but since they repeat it, let’s repeat as well, the world is a much, much better place.   Wars, rape, starvation, all are down.  Whatever could he mean?

None—whether young or old or in-between—is exempt from exposure to those things which have the potential to drag us down and destroy us. …

I’m guessing that he means Pornography here.  I mean, people certainly had more exposure to war, rape, and starvation before this period.  Let me remind everyone that believing that pornography is addicting is far more harmful than pornography.  I know, I know, that pesky science contradicting “the prophet” again.  Numbers, facts, statistics.  Such bothersome things when there is belief to be sold.

“… But we need not despair. … We are waging a war with sin. … It is a war we can and will win. Our Father in Heaven has given us the tools we need in order to do so.”1

Let’s talk about this war for a second.  There are roughly 7 billion souls on this earth.  That means that there were at least 21 Billion souls in the pre-existence (This is rough numbers people, there have been about 7 billion throughout history and there are more people being born, it’s just an illustration of the numbers), and 7 billion of those followed Satan.  That means that for Adam and Eve, there were 3.5 Billion devils to tempt each one.  For Noah on the Ark, there were about a billion devils to tempt each person (and there weren’t even pigs for the devils to go into the bodies of, because everything was drowned except what was on the Ark). Today, there is only one devil per person.  Our modern life is actually less tempting, less dangerous, and less devils per capita than any time previous.

Maybe that’s why the world is a better place?

All of us, young and old, are faced daily with the war mentioned by President Monson. The enemy and his angels are trying to distract us.

And why do we have to call it war?  I’m opposed to calling it a “war on drugs” or a “war on Terror”.  Why does it always have to have the sharp imagery.  Why is it a “War in heaven” instead of the “Great eternal debate” still being discussed in our lives?  Instead of thinking of Angels with swords and devils assaulting youth on every side, we could talk in terms of philosophy and agency.  I mean, that was what the war in heaven was about, right; agency?  So we could couch it in terms of choices and decisions.  “The Great Decision”.   Let’s face it, God needs violent imagery to appeal to his base.  I’d rather be around people who will do good without threat and rhetoric, thank you.

The scriptures contain countless examples of those who have won their wars even in the midst of very hostile situations.

Again, the scriptures have a lot more of this, than the quiet examples of people doing good even when tempted not to.  War appeals to the people who read scriptures.

Figuratively, all of us need to transform ourselves into modern Captain Moronis in order to win the wars against evil.

Ah yes, well, why not.  I mean, it’s like setting the standard that everyone needs to be a George Washington in order to get to heaven.  It’s unreachable, because he was extraordinary, and yet feels tangible.  And when we fall short, we can blame ourselves to go through the guilt cycle again.

He told me one day he was surprised by a very difficult and uncomfortable situation—his friends were accessing pornographic images on their cell phones. In that exact moment, this young man had to decide what was most important—his popularity or his righteousness.

See, it’s all about pornography.  And yet, science tells us that this very idea, that “pornography is a great threat” is far more damaging to people than viewing a boob.

In the few seconds that followed, he was filled with courage and told his friends that what they were doing was not right. Moreover, he told them that they should stop what they were doing or they would become slaves to it.

And there you have it.  This kid pushed his friends more towards a damaging mindset because of his religion.  Far more damaging than the image itself.

Undoubtedly, he and his friend faced mockery and persecution because of that decision.


Oh and while we’re at it, if one tells others harmful meme’s and attempts to enforce their beliefs on others, if those others do not comply or make a statement back, then the one enforcing their beliefs on others is persecuted.  We see this with Kim Davis at the courthouse.  Some day, religious people need to get over themselves and understand that standing for truth doesn’t mean decrying other people’s choices, it means doing what they feel is right.

The war of good against evil will continue throughout our lives since the adversary’s purpose is to make all people as miserable as he is.

And yet, being miserable in church, or in the temple is never used as an example of an accurate measurement that the devil was there.  To suggest such a thing is shocking to any member.  And yet, some people genuinely are miserable in church, in the temple, or being around people who enforce their beliefs on others.  This is just rhetoric to try to bolster those who  try to enforce their religion on others.

Please stop.  Stop with war rhetoric.  Stop with implying that you are better than everyone else if you are part of the church.  Stop with encouraging your members to smack down their friends and relations.  Stop with calling the world wicked, evil and getting worse all the time.

For a group that claims to have good news and to be about families and an eternal perspective, you spend a ton of time dwelling on the awful state of everyone else.


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Last edited by Mithryn on September 28, 2015 at 4:13 pm

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