And now, my beloved son, notwithstanding their hardness, let us labor diligently; for if we should cease to labor, we should be brought under condemnation; for we have a labor to perform whilst in this tabernacle of clay, that we may conquer the enemy of all righteousness, and rest our souls in the kingdom of God. (Moroni. 9:6)
When we make a commitment to something, we need to see it through. Whether it be something short term like a project or job commitment, or something long term like a marriage or baptism commitment… We need to labor diligently until we fulfill our commitment.
But what if the circumstances change? Are we still obligated to continue the work? If my neighbor goes on vacation, do I still need to keep my commitment to cutting his grass? If my boss takes a transfer in the company, do I still need to continue to work? If my spouse stops putting forth effort in the marriage, do I have to stay married? And if I feel that serving God gets too difficult in life, do I have to remain faithful until the end?
Most likely, you know the answers to these questions, but when we evaluate our spiritual commitment to the Lord, I think it’s easy to sometimes blame the circumstances around us and justify our actions.
Mormon was instructing his son Moroni to labor diligently, despite the circumstances around him. The people were becoming so hardened to the Word of God, that the job was difficult. Yet he made it personal, saying “we have a labor to perform whilst in this tabernacle of clay.” If we don’t keep our commitment, we should be brought under condemnation. It doesn’t matter what the outside circumstances are; we still need to labor.
Why? Because this life is about more than the circumstances around us. It’s about our commitment to our Savior Jesus Christ, who committed His life to us. It’s about laboring to “conquer the enemy of all righteousness.” That’s our job. We must stay focused on the mission at hand. When we complete our mission, we will “rest our souls in the kingdom of God.” The ultimate reward for a job well done!
Notwithstanding means in spite of. In spite of all these circumstances, I have a labor to perform whilst in this tabernacle of clay. In other words, the circumstances don’t matter. We labor on.
So, in essence…
Notwithstanding my neighbor on vacation, I will labor to cut his grass because I committed to it.
Notwithstanding my boss transferring, I will labor to do my job because I committed to it.
Notwithstanding my spouse’s lack of effort, I will continue to labor in my marriage because I committed to it.
Notwithstanding life’s trials and challenges, I will labor for the Lord because I committed to it.
So come what may—health challenge, offense, apathy, conflict, death of a loved one, pandemic—let us labor diligently! Let us keep the commitment we made and continue to work despite all circumstances. After all, we labor to defeat the enemy and attain the kingdom of God!
This article has undergone ministry review and approval.