My niece graduated from a Christian high school, and each yearbook photo included the student’s “life verse” alongside his or her name and accomplishments. The idea of claiming a life verse at that point seemed both encouraging and absurd – encouraging that students were beginning to see specific callings and directions for their lives; absurd that someone’s life purpose could be reduced to a single verse, especially when so little of that person’s life had already been lived at that point.
I have since gained a better appreciation for life verses and have even claimed one of my own: Romans 12:2, “Do not conform any longer to the pattern of the world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. . . .” (NIV). It seems that no matter what God has called me to do at each stage of my life, it involves using my mind and doing things that aren’t considered popular.
Speaking of what’s popular, I noticed in my niece’s yearbook that even certain “life verses” were more popular than others. Multiple students claimed verses like Jeremiah 29:11 or Philippians 4:13. No one seemed to want Acts 9:16 or Matthew 8:20. Even Exodus 31:3 and Song of Songs 7:8 (which may better state many teenage boys’ goals!) were missing from the list. I wonder why, if God made each of us unique, most of us tend to identify with the same few verses – and evidently the same purpose or calling – as so many others.
What about you? If you have a life verse, how did you choose it? How does it fit your unique personality and calling?