(Warning: this contains spoilers about the movie Divergent) I was watching the movie Divergent last night and it sparked a thought in my mind. For those who have no clue what Divergent is about, it is set in a post world war Chicago. The city has survived for many years after it has developed a test that tells you what you are going to be and do. Now the test doesn't force you to pick a job, or faction, but you'd be crazy not to pick what the test told you that you were. There are five different factions: the intellectuals, the warriors, the selfless, the peaceful, and the honest. A faction, in this movie, is a group of people who live and work together. They are grouped together based on the results of their testing. The honest ones live with the honest ones, and likewise with the rest of the groups.
The main actress in the movie, Beatrice, goes in for the test, but the test doesn't work for her. The test says that she is actually meant for three different factions. This is where the name "divergent" comes from. Divergents are those who do not fit the mold of the test. They think differently than the rest of the world. In an effort to hide herself, she chooses to be in the warrior faction. While in training she eventually learns that she isn't alone. Four (his real name is Tobias, but this is what he goes by in the movie), is also divergent. He wants to be divergent. In a conversation with Beatrice he reveals a tattoo on his back that has all the symbols of all the factions. He tells her that he wants to be brave, selfless, kind, honest, and smart. He doesn't just want to be one thing.
There are many ways that this movie could be used to illustrate the Christian life, but I want to share just one. When you look at the different factions, you see different qualities possessed by different people. The divergents possess more than just one of the qualities, and Four actually wants to possess all of them. This reminds me of the the Fruit of the Spirit that Paul talks about in Galatians 5:22-23.
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; agaist such things there is no law.
The way the fruit of the Spirit works is all or nothing. You don't pick and choose which of the qualities you are going to possess. If we actually let the Holy Spirit guide us and teach us as we read God's Word, then we will begin to posses more and more of each of the qualities and become better and better at each of them. A mark of a true Christian is growth. We never think I'm as loving as I'm ever going to be; we become more and more loving as we grow in Christ. The same goes for the rest of the qualities mentioned. So, like Four, we should desire to possess all the qualities that the Spirit wants to bring into our lives.
This doesn't mean that we need to try to be more loving or joyful and so on, but that we need to submit to the Spirit and let Him help us. If we let the Holy Spirit live within us, then He will naturally produce these qualities in us. That's the beauty of the Holy Spirit. He makes us to be what we couldn't be on our own. We need to let the Holy Spirit move in our lives, and we need to let Him make us divergent.