20 I say unto you, my brethren, that if you should render all the thanks and praise which your whole soul has power to possess, to that God who has created you, and has kept and preserved you, and has caused that ye should rejoice, and has granted that ye should live in peace one with another—
21 I say unto you that if ye should serve him who has created you from the beginning, and is preserving you from day to day, by lending you breath, that ye may live and move and do according to your own will, and even supporting you from one moment to another—I say, if ye should serve him with all your whole souls yet ye would be unprofitable servants.
22 And behold, all that he requires of you is to keep his commandments; and he has promised you that if ye would keep his commandments ye should prosper in the land; and he never doth vary from that which he hath said; therefore, if ye do keep his commandments he doth bless you and prosper you. Mosiah 2:20-22
The first question that comes to my mind is what does it mean to be an unprofitable servant? The thing we have a hard time remembering is that our Heavenly Father has given us more than we can ever repay. He did this because he loves us and he wants us to become like him. The gift of His Son exceeds all that we can ever give back to Him. He simply asks us to love him and keep his commandments. That is why it is critical for us to overcome pride. Pride is enmity toward God. It is the power by which Satan rules over us. When we have pride our will is in competition with God’s will and we stop seeking what he wants for us and start seeking what we want. At that point it doesn’t really matter what that other thing is because when we are placing our will above God’s will we are on the road to sin. The natural man will not choose do follow God because the natural man is an enemy to God. So, the path that Christ showed us is the path of prosperity. It is the path of safety. And while we can never do enough in this life to repay Him, we can certainly please him by keeping his commandments. We obey Him because we love Him.
President Joseph F. Smith said, “I believe, that one of the greatest sins of which the inhabitants of the earth are guilty today is the sin of ingratitude, the want of acknowledgment, on their part, of God and his right to govern and control. We see a man raised up with extraordinary gifts, or with great intelligence, and he is instrumental in developing some great principle. He and the world ascribe this great genius and wisdom to himself. He attributes his success to his own energies, labor and mental capacity. He does not acknowledge the hand of God in anything connected with his success, but ignores him altogether and takes the honor to himself; this will apply to almost all the world. In all great modern discoveries in science, in the arts, in mechanics, and in all the material advancement of our age, the world says, ‘We have done it.’ The individual says, ‘I have done it,’ and he gives no honor and credit to God. Now, I read in the revelations through Joseph Smith, the prophet, that because of this, God is not pleased with the inhabitants of the earth but is angry with them because they will not acknowledge his hand in all things.” (Gospel Doctrine, 5th ed., Salt Lake City: Deseret Book Co., 1939, pp. 270–71.)