Another of the best things we should focus on is serving God. One of the saddest experiences I had as a full-time missionary occurred in the MTC. While there we manned the call lines for people who called in requesting a copy of the Book of Mormon, Bible, or church video. One man with whom I spoke told me that he felt like he had spent much of his life serving God but didn’t feel like he received anything for it. He told me he was going to stop serving God and instead wait for God to serve him. That brief conversation has remained with me over the years. At the time I had no good response to the man’s statement. Over the years I’ve thought about my experience with that man and spent time learning about the importance of serving God.
We are commanded to serve God: “And ye shall serve the Lord your God, and he shall bless thy bread, and thy water” (Exodus 23:25). When we are baptized as members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints we covenant with God to serve Him. Further, being baptized is one way we show God by our actions that we will serve Him: “[The people of Limhi] were desirous to be baptized as a witness and a testimony that they were willing to serve God with all their hearts” (Mosiah 21:35). Those who serve God with all their might are sanctified: “And we know also, that sanctification through the grace of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ is just and true, to all those who love and serve God with all their mights, minds, and strength” (D&C; 20:31).
When we cease serving God we turn away and serve other gods, as is stated repeatedly throughout the Old Testament: “Take heed to yourselves, that your heart be not deceived, and ye turn aside, and serve other gods, and worship them” (Deut. 11:16). We do not stop serving gods, we just stop serving the True and Living God. “When ye have transgressed the covenant of the Lord your God, which he commanded you, and have gone and served other gods, and bowed yourselves to them; then shall the anger of the Lord be kindled against you, and ye shall perish quickly from off the good land which he hath given unto you” (Josh. 23:16). Ceasing to serve God is a sign of wickedness. It is not pleasing to the Lord. Why does God want us to serve Him though? Through our service to Him, He is able to fulfill His purposes. What are those purposes? “For behold, this is my work and my glory—to bring to pass the immortality and eternal life of man” (Moses 1:39). He wants us to serve Him so that He can sanctify us and help us return to live with Him. Serving God helps us become more like Him.