If you’re like me, until recently you had no clue what divergence meant and you probably had never even thought about it. It’s one of those 100,000 thousand plus words in the English language that are rarely used. Divergent means to be different or develop in different directions. But of course if you’re like me, you also probably already know that because you’ve recently either read the page-turning trilogy or watched the major motion picture in theaters. If not, let me give you a quick overview.
Divergent is a coming-of-age story about a young girl, Beatrice, who lives in a futuristic dystopian society. Her society is divided into 5 factions, where each one represents a particular virtue: Abnegation (selflessness), Candor (honesty), Erudite (knowledge), Amity (peace), and Dauntless (bravery). When they reach a certain age, everyone citizen decide the faction in which they would like to spend the rest of their lives, regardless of the one they grew up in.
But there are those few individuals, like Beatrice, who discover they are Divergent, and whose personalities enable them to fit into more than one faction. Being divergent is dangerous so Beatrice must keep this secret in order to protect herself and attempt to fit into the faction she has chosen, all the while juggling normal pieces of a sixteen year-old girl’s life: her family, friends and a boy who she just might love.
Doesn’t that just intrigue you? There’s a part of me that LOVES a suspenseful fiction series complete with a love story (nerd perhaps? I’ll let you be the judge…) But then there’s another, larger part of me that loves our Lord and tries to live by His word every day. So every time I find another series that I just can’t seem to put down, I look for the similarities and symbolism that I can relate to God’s word.
Each of the five factions represents a noble virtue; these virtues have the power to benefit those who practice them. Let take a look at each of them and see how we can apply them in our daily Christian walks.
We know from the gospels how extremely selfless Jesus’ life was. Not only did He seek to serve others constantly, but He served out of love (John 15:9) and ultimately gave His life for us (1 John 3:16), so that we would have a chance at eternal life. In order for us to try to be selfless like Jesus, we must first forget ourselves and love others.
“This is my commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.” – John 15:12
In the world, honesty isn’t a given. We’ve all been guilty of a lie from time to time but we also know how it feels to be on the receiving end of dishonesty. As Christians, we must strive to be people of our word and be different from the world.
“Lying lips are an abomination to the Lord, but those who act faithfully as His delight.” – Proverbs 12:22
The phrase “knowledge is power” couldn’t be more true when it comes to the inspired word of God. The Bible is an incredible tool to learn both about God and His will for our lives. We must read our Bibles daily in order to attain wisdom and be able to share it with others.
“For the Lord gives wisdom; from His mouth come knowledge and understanding….” – Proverbs 2:6
We know that our God is a God of peace (Rom. 15:33), among other things. He gives the gift of peace to all who love Him and follow His word (John 14:15, 1 John 5:3). There is no greater peace than knowing you will someday live with God in heaven. We must do our best to share this peace with others!
“And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your mind in Christ Jesus.” – Philippians 4:7
Lastly, we must be brave soldiers of Christ and spread God’s word to the world (Matt. 28:19-20). We have so many examples in scripture of faithful servants of God who laid it all on the line to follow His will. We, too, must be brave.
“Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” – Joshua 1:9
On a daily basis, we can ask ourselves: Was I selfless and honest? Did I gain more knowledge of God? Did I share the peace of God with others? Was I brave by standing up for God’s word? Christianity is divergent by nature; there are many more attributes to a Christian’s life than these five. How can you become more divergent for God?