1. As I thought about my life verses, I tried to recall the earliest verse that I had personally chosen to commit to memory. There were quite a few that we memorized for Sunday school or youth group, but those don't necessarily hold particular meaning for me. The one that does is:
Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight. ~Proverbs 3:5-6I remember memorizing this one while at Ligonier camp. I've mentioned before the importance of Ligonier to my faith formation and I think this verse from Proverbs captured what I realized at Ligonier - that I am not in control, that God is in control, and that surrendering to Him is the way to live.
2. and 3. There are two more verses from Ligonier that I have committed to memory through song.
So let us know, let us press on to know the Lord. His going forth is as certain as the dawn. And He will come, He will come to us like the rain, like the spring rain watering the earth. ~Hosea 6:3
Create in me a clean heart, O God. And renew a right spirit within me. Cast me not away from thy presence, O Lord. Take not thy holy spirit from me. Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation. And renew a right spirit within me. ~Psalm 51:10-12Both of these have beautiful acoustic guitar melodies that play in my head as I sing them. I love to sing them over and over again and let my mind drain and just focus on being in the presence of God.
4. and 5. As a science-minded, logical, concrete person, the concept of faith has always been something I have wrestled with. I constantly turn to Hebrews to remind myself. The passage I love begins:
Faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen ~Hebrews 11:1Then the author continues with what is often referred to as the "hall of faith". It's a listing of many many figures from the old testament and examples of their faith. After listing these, the author summarizes what this all means for us:
Therefor since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. Let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. ~Hebrews 12:1-2
6. and 7. I grew up in a mainline protestant church which taught the ideas of "once saved, always saved" and that we are saved by faith alone. As I've gotten older, I've wrestled with the concepts because of the inequality I see in the world and the prosperous people I see who are doing very little to advance the work of God. These next two verses are ones that remind me that true faith is made manifest through actions.
Faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by actions, is dead. ~James 2:17Although this is the portion I have memorized, it is important to read it in context. In the surrounding verses, James explains how our faith is seen through our actions. And that faith without actions is what the demons have, even they believe in the existence of God!
Jesus tells a parable that I love that captures the same idea - the parable of the sheep and the goats from Matthew 25. I've blogged about this one before. The segment I have committed to memory is this:
The King will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.’ ~Matthew 25:40
I'd love it if you'd share your life verse(s) with me in the comments!
Also, if you click the photo above, it takes you to a site where other's have shared their own life verses. (I'm not affiliated with that site in any way and cannot vouch for other aspects of the webpage, I just appreciated the collection of life verses from others.)