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Why is work an important gospel principle?

The Lord has commanded us not to be idle. Developing the capacity to work helps us contribute to the world in which we live. It brings an increased sense of self-worth. It blesses us and our families, both now and in the future.

Prepare yourself spiritually

What scriptures and talks will help the young women understand why work is an important gospel principle?     

Genesis 3:19; Galatians 6:3–5; 1 Thessalonians 4:11; Mosiah 10:4–5 (We are commanded to work)

Proverbs 31:27Alma 38:12; D&C 58:27; 60:13; 75:29 (Do not be idle)

Moses 1:39 (God’s work and glory)

Dieter F. Uchtdorf, “Two Principles for Any Economy,” Ensign or Liahona, Nov. 2009, 55–58

H. David Burton, “The Blessing of Work,” Ensign, Dec. 2009, 43–46

Work and Self-Reliance,” For the Strength of Youth (2011), 40–41

Happiness in Family Life: Work

Video: “Easily Guided”

Share experiences

At the beginning of each class, invite the young women to share, teach, and testify about the experiences they have had applying what they learned in the previous week’s lesson. This will encourage personal conversion and help the young women see the relevance of the gospel in their daily lives.

Introduce the doctrine

Choose from these ideas or think of your own to introduce this week’s lesson:

  • Invite the young women to watch the video “Easily Guided” and look for blessings that come from hard work. Ask the young women to discuss blessings they have received because of hard work.
  • Invite a young woman to share a talent with the class and explain what she had to do to develop that talent. What motivated her to work hard at her talent? Invite others in the class to share experiences in which they worked to achieve something. Why does Heavenly Father want us to learn to work?

Learn together

Each of the activities below will help the young women learn about the value of work. Following the inspiration of the Spirit, select one or more that will work best for your class:

  • Give each young woman a scripture reference about work (such as those listed in this outline). Ask her to read the scripture and think of an example from her life or the life of someone else that demonstrates the principle taught in her scripture. Invite the young women to share their scriptures and the examples they thought of. How does work bless our lives?
  • Give each young woman one of the scriptures from this outline, and ask her to write a short summary of the scripture on a piece of paper. Ask the young women to post their summaries on the board. Assign each young woman a different scripture, and invite her to read it and find the summary on the board that matches the scripture. What do the young women learn from these scriptures about the importance of work? How have the young women been blessed because of their own hard work?
  • Using the “Work and Self-Reliance” section in For the Strength of Youth, the talks suggested in this outline, or the Work site on LDS.org, choose statements about work that you think will be meaningful to the young women. Give each young woman a copy of one of the statements. Invite her to read the statement silently and pass it to the person sitting next to her. Have the young women continue until everyone has read each of the statements. Place all of the statements on the board, and invite each young woman to select one that is especially meaningful to her and share why she finds it meaningful. What do they learn from these statements about the importance of work? How will learning how to work bless them and their families, now and in the future?
  • Give the young women copies of relevant sections from one of the talks suggested in this outline. Invite them to read the sections individually and underline words and phrases that describe the blessings that come from work. Ask them to share what they underlined with someone else in the class. What have the young women learned about work from their families? What work can they do now that will bless their own homes? How can learning how to work now help them as mothers?

Ask the young women to share what they learned today. Do they understand the value of work better? What feelings or impressions do they have? Do they have any additional questions? Would it be worthwhile to spend more time on this doctrine?

Live what we are learning

Invite the young women to consider how they will live by what they have learned today. For example, they could:

  • Help more with household chores, get a part-time job, or volunteer with a local service organization.
  • Complete one or more of the following in Personal Progress: Knowledge value project 1, Choice and Accountability value project 5.