You become what you behold.  

“A person will worship something, have no doubt about that. That which dominates our imaginations and our thoughts will determine our lives, and our character. Therefore, it behooves us to be careful what we worship, for what we are worshipping we are becoming.”- Ralph Waldo Emerson

A well known pioneer of social psychology, the late Robert Zanjoc, led a research while at University of Michigan in the US, which proved that happier couples tend to grow alike after about 25 years of marriage. Zanjoc reasoned that the mimicry actions of facial expressions resulted in development of similar facial lines over time. Although other studies have sought to cast doubt on these conclusions, there is still validity that the frequency and intimacy of couples’ interactions are the distinctive variables determining whether or not they grow alike over time.

The discovery of Mirror Neurons
Further, Vilayanur Ramachandran, the world renowned neurologist, in his mesmerizing presentation at TedGlobal in 2006, talks about the exciting discovery of the mirror neurons by an Italian Scientist, Giacomo Rizzolatti and his team. Ramachandran relates that these mirror neurons are part of the motor command neurons that fire when you make a physical action such as when you reach out and pull an object. What Rizzolatti found was that the mirror neurons also fire when you observe another person performing the same action. The amazing thing about this is that the frequency of the firing of neurons increase the strength of that neurological path, much in line with the old ‘practice makes perfect’ adage. So by consistently observing another, you shape your own neurological patterns.

 

Who or what are you beholding?
And here is the thing, as you spend time with God, in prayer, you behold him, and therefore become like him. The frequency and intimacy of your encounters with God, determine your rate of becoming like Him. Could it have been for this reason that Jesus, considered by many as the most influential figure in the history of mankind, said He only did what He saw His father doing (John 5:19).

Many people who seek to change their undesired behavioral patterns, find that it is a frustrating and futile exercise, until they change the things they behold.

Paul of Tarsus's statement in his letter to the church in Corinth stating; And with all of us, as with unveiled face, continue to behold as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are constantly being transfigured into his very own image in ever increasing splendor and from one degree of glory to another… (2 Corinthians 3 v 18), therefore makes perfect sense in light of these discoveries.

Here is my parting thought, what are you beholding? Conversely, what you want to become, are you beholding?

Thoughtfully,
Vez