We become what we worship

We become what we worship

The worth and excellency of a soul is to be measured by the object of its love.

Henry Scougal, The Life of God in the Soul of Man

I found myself fumbling for this quote on Sunday during the first service, never found it in the mental database and didn’t even try in the 2nd service.

But it is one of my favorite quotes from one of my favorite books. Henry Scougal was a Scottish minister and the dean of Aberdeen University when he died at the age of 27. He became the Dean at age of 24 and he entered the same university to study at the age of 15 already fluent in Latin and Greek. It wasn’t because he was a prodigy per se, he was the product of amazing training by very dedicated parents…and he was somewhat of a prodigy.

The fruitful writings of his young life focus on the personal holiness that flows out of a life of worship. The full passage goes like this:

The worth and excellency of a soul is to be measured by the object of its love: he who loveth mean and sorted things doth thereby become base and vile; but a noble and well-placed affection doth advanced and improve the spirit into a conformity with perfection which it loves.

He goes on:

The true way to improve and ennnoble our souls is, by fixing our love on the divine perfection is, that we may have them always before us, and derive an impression of them on ourselves, and ‘beholding with an open face, as in a glass, the glory of the Lord, we may be changed into the same image, from glory to glory.’

He who, with a generous and holy ambition, hath raised his eyes towards that uncreated beauty and goodness, and fixed his affection there, is quite of another spirit, have a more excellent and her relic temper than the rest of the world.

May we be ones who become like the one we worship; the one who was rich and for our sake became poor; the one who washed his disciples feet; the one who laid down his life to ransom us from slavery to sin and death.