Item description for Satisfy Your Soul: Restoring the Heart of Christian Spirituality by Bruce Demarest...
Overview Join Dr. Bruce Demarest in his study of the life-long process of inner transformation. He'll intoduce you to the practices of silence, meditation, contemplation, journaling and spiritual direction. He clears away misunderstanding and offers safeguards against non-Biblical Christian mysticism. A must read for any Christian seeking deeper discipleship and ongoing growth.
Publishers Description Discover the timeless spiritual guidance from Christian classics on such spiritual disciplines as silence, meditation, contemplation, and more. Includes: - resource listings - personal application questions - the author's personal story of his contemplative journey
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Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 8.4" Width: 5.4" Height: 0.9" Weight: 0.8 lbs.
Release Date Jul 15, 1999
Publisher NavPress Publishing Group
ISBN 1576831302 ISBN13 9781576831304
Availability 0 units.
More About Bruce Demarest
Bruce Demarest (PhD, University of Manchester) is professor of spiritual formation at Denver Seminary, where he has taught since 1975, and a member of the Evangelical Theological Society, Theological Thinkers and Cultural Group, and Spiritual Formation Forum.
John S. Feinberg (PhD, University of Chicago) is department chair and professor of biblical and systematic theology at Trinity Evangelical Divinity School. He is the author of Ethics for a Brave New World (with Paul D. Feinberg) and is general editor of Crossway's Foundations of Evangelical Theology series.
Reviews - What do customers think about Satisfy Your Soul?
Satisfy Your Soul, is very satisfying Dec 2, 2005
This book I found to be quite helpful. Dr. Demarest does an excellent job of guiding the believer toward developing a deeper relationship with God. One of the weaknesses of Evangelicalism has been a failure to help the individual move beyond simply receiving Jesus into one's life. In his book "Satisfy Your Soul'" Dr. Demarest's through sound Biblically based teaching guides the believer, by the example of other Christians throughout church history, toward a more satisfying fellowship with God. He also takes opportunity at the end of each chapter to suggest actions the reader can put into practice personally which will lead to deeper communion with the Lord.
Very helpful Apr 22, 2004
The author is a teacher at a famous Evangelical seminary. God only knows how many times this dear man has read the Bible through from cover to cover, yet he discovered that Bible-reading and church work are not enough to fill the longings of the Christian heart. The anwser can be found outside traditional Evangelical sources, such as reading Christian classics, meditative and contemplative prayer, and even ancient liturgy. Brothers and sisters in Christ, if all the spiritual advice your church has to offer is "Read your Bible more and you will grow," and you are discovering after many years that THIS ISN'T GOOD ENOUGH, please give this book a read. I would have given it 5 stars except the author showed less enthusiasm for Eastern Orthodoxy than he should have, in my very biased opinion.
Dr. Demarest discovered his treasures (Part 3) Apr 17, 2003
Dr. Demarest discovered his treasures (Part 3) By Peter K. Y. Chang
(7) In a broad sense, the spiritual helper is a mature Christian who offers soul-care in the form of spiritual friendship, spiritual guidance, spiritual mentoring, or spiritual direction. Discipleship includes teaching, training, and a helping ministry. It is an important biblical concept, which must be encouraged and supported. An effective discipleship program may enable Christians to grow in the spirit, to live out the value of Christ, and to meet the purpose of God's Kingdom. An effective approach to discipleship involves our faith and lives. A spiritual helper who knows how to lead us deeply into God's will, must be familiar with training in essential Christian doctrines, structuring a quiet time, cultivating Christian fellowship, and witnessing to the Christian experience. Christian helping agents by practicing personal soul-care, build on the core issues of discipleship to achieve Christ-like souls. We should pay more attention to nurturing the life of individual Christians. Jesus approves of this in Matthew chapter twelve. Soul-care deals with dysfunction to renew Christian foundation in sorrowing Christian hearts. Soul-care ministries recognize that variable dispositions relate to God differently. They guide growing Christians to take account of personal history and temperaments. Mentoring and offering spiritual direction must be highly personalized. Jesus gave the best model when he called twelve disciples and taught, trained, and nurtured them according to each individual need. God called Moses to guide the Israelites as a whole, and to mentor Joshua in particular The spiritual helpers must have a dynamic Christian faith. They call forth new life in other Christians by closely connecting to Jesus. They must possess knowledge regarding Scripture, theology, the spiritual classics, and psychology. They also should be persons of loving concern, of experiencing some suffering and failure in life, and of knowing how to deal with it. Dallas Willard concluded, "Spiritual direction was understood by Jesus, taught by Paul, obeyed by the early church, followed with excesses in the medieval church, narrowed by the Reformers, recaptured by Puritans, and virtually lost in the modern church." Therefore, it is our responsibility to restore it.
(8) Emil Brunner's "Law of the closeness of relation" could be imperfect, but it helped us understand the discipline concerning psychology. It includes the important aspects of truth and the distortion of truth due to the disturbance of judgment by sin. Christian counseling is to identify and welcome what is true in psychology while rejecting what is inconsistent with the biblical standard of truth. The human being consists of an inner immaterial soul and spirit, dwelling in a material body, which is known as "dichotomy." Soul and spirit are interactive and interrelating, but soul often refers to the self from the human perspective, and spirit, the self from the divine point of view. Our inner person cannot be divided into two essentially different parts, soul and spirit. The former deals with psychological, the latter with spiritual issues. In fact, a person engages God with the inner structure in the same as he engages himself and others. Faulty thought of self leads to misbehavior toward God. Hostile emotion toward another person leads to resenting God. A strained relationship with another person impairs relationship with God. Therefore, we need Christian counselors to work for the soul and to foster spiritual growth by dismantling psychological barriers. The functions of psychology in the field of Redemptive Counseling include the contribution to spiritual formation, helping Christians to understand their uniqueness, showing how false images of God hinder spiritual growth from maturity, highlighting the destructive power of false guilt, and exposing the tyranny of perfectionism and being a workaholic. A Christian who is delivered from condemnation is not necessarily healed from emotional illness. For those who are emotional wounded, God uses Christian psychology counselors to bring healing to them. Biblical-framed psychology helps to diagnose emotional and spiritual problems and offers healing solutions to re-experience God's love, mercy, peace and grace.
(9) Many Christian scholars admit that reading the spiritual classics can satisfy our common hunger for experiencing and honoring God. When we read them, we enter into conversation with the great personalities of the Christian heritage. As Hebrews 12:1 said, "All these pioneers who blazed the way for us." The classics showed the major movements of Christian spirituality. We read, as if we engage patristic, medieval, Orthodox, Reformation, Roman Catholic, and Charismatic writers. We receive the benefits of great personal blessing via the writings of spiritually wise men and women. The spiritual classics also challenge our culturally shaped perspectives on the faith. We tend to reflect the norms and values of the social context, and neglect legitimate elements of biblical faith. The spiritual classic writers help us distinguish the truth from the false in every generation. Solomon, who experienced most blessings before he was old, found that nothing satisfies the heart apart from God. Apart from a living relationship with God, everything is "chasing after wind, everything is meaningless," he said. However, Paul experienced hunger in his heart as a sign of life and hope. Teresa of Avila advocated the need for believers to surrender themselves unconditionally into God's loving bosom. Growing Christians, each in their own ways, cultivate discipline through quietness, meditation, verbal or nonverbal prayer, and spiritual reading. Our spiritual progress occurs via the synergy of God's initiative and our trusting responses. Before ending the book, Dr. Demarest has pled for balance in living out the gospel. He urged us that Theology and spirituality must be bound together in a mutually nourishing relationship. We must take biblical warning against doctrinal laxity. We must have our roots in the historic Christian message. We should follow the examples of faithful theologians. We must avoid antichristian heresies, which deny absolute truth and disintegrate Christian belief. Finally, Francis of Assisi, gave some mottos to encourage us. These are Christian spirituality is an enterprise, which integrates the whole person; spiritual renewal calls for self-denial, following the example of Jesus and other saints; Spiritual path requires openness to change and challenge; the spiritual restoration calls for courage, for the Kingdom's sake etc. Thank to Dr. Demarest, we have committed ourselves to serve God. We are ready to meet the goals set in this book.
Dr. Demarest discovered his treasures (Part 1) Apr 17, 2003
Dr. Demarest discovered his treasures (Part 1) By Peter K. Y. Chang
(1) The purpose of this book is to emphasize spiritual formation, which shapes and forms Christian character and action into the likeness of Christ. Therefore, we may grow into godliness, holiness, compassion, faithfulness, and obedience. The author, Dr. Demarest, was profoundly influenced by Thomas A' Kempis, John of the Cross, and Henri Nouwen etc. His spiritual insights helped him to deeply trust in God. This was the first time he experienced the sense of actual growth in the inner man. With these new approaches, he felt satisfied and was transformed into spiritual truth. He said, "What I was discovering was the intuitive way of engaging God; that is, learning how to open my heart as well as my head to truth." Then he read more extensively in classic writings, and traveled to New Mexico, where he learned to balance the right beliefs, the right affections, and the right actions. There an aged pastor broke cried as he thanked God for solving his problem. This embedded in his life for many years. It was an encounter with God. Dr. Demarest discovered his treasures in a Christ-centered orthodoxy, the commitment to community. Then, he wanted to get close to other Christians so as to encounter Christ in them. He practiced spiritual disciplines from the past. He learned different views of the ancient writers that led others into the presence of God. He found a way to honor the place and work of the Holy Spirit. Finally, he gained a most treasured gift in connecting with the classic understandings of Christian spirituality through the spiritual masters of history. He realized how important it is to give place to human longings and questions, how to allow the Holy Spirit to lead us to focus on spiritual disciplines, and to draw us into a more intimate knowledge of God. Therefore, we can ultimately rest in Him.
(2) Thus, Dr. Demarest has been willing with his teaching talent through this book to satisfy people's spiritual hunger during the age of "the American Dream." Those people, in fact, are seeking significance by turning to the spiritual world. They long to touch the transcendent, but they are vaguely touching deity before they know the true God. Yet very few average Christians understand that authentic contact with God should affect them in some meaningful, even palpable way. Moreover, the "Native American religion," the "Old Gods of Pagan Religion," the "Wicca and Druidism," the "Mother Goddess of the Earth," and the "New Age Movement," etc. and all kinds of atheism, pantheism, polytheism, Naturism, and postmodernism have distorted true Christian belief. A. W. Tozer admitted, "For millions of Christians, God is no more real than He is to non-Christians." They hunger for something within them, as if Augustine sought for something to love; there was a hunger within him before he became Christian. We need to lead those who are searching, but have never met God, or gone astray with suffering to know God through His Word. They are weak and unable to stand up for Christian convictions. Their souls also suffer from emotional deadness, from moral problems. They have no enriching relationship with God. We have to find out the causes that may come from intellectualism, emotionalism, legalism, individualism, or hyperactivity. Unfortunately, many people need help, but do not know who will direct them or guide their souls in the direction of growth in Christ? C. S. Lewis addressed this problem as to personal biases that result in a closed mind. At any rate, we may enter a new era in the work of God to reach and revive others and ourselves.
(3) The word "spirituality" nowadays lends to varied practices. Some non-Christians and other pagan religions, as noted above, have freely misused it. The word "spiritual" functions as the inner person coherent with God's will. It pertains to the true living God, the Holy Spirit, and it produces the quality of Christian through the Trinity God and His Word. It shapes the Christian life in relationship with Christ for the glory of God. It also renews and satisfies the soul, and extends to every aspect of Christian life before God and other persons. However, as the definition of spirituality and spiritual are misused, we must discern between the truth and the false which includes generic spirituality and religious spirituality. For the former, it only focuses on the human self-fulfillment with little or no regard for God. It is highly eclectic, picking and choosing from a wide range of beliefs and practices. It concentrates on self, and has a passion for the satisfaction of personal needs and feeling such as C. S. Lewis described in his book "Screwtape Letters." The fatal flaw of generic spirituality is to disregard for the God of the Bible. Religious spirituality searches for transcendence and purpose by appealing to a higher power. It is the potent force in the non-Christian religions. Heresies gush as Gnosticism, pretending to be Christian, empower quasi-religious system such as Yoga, Transcendental meditation, and the New Age Movement. It is embodied in the self-help movement, and nourishes so-called religious spirituality relating to a higher power. It elevates human effort above God's grace. It rejects Jesus as the way, the truth, and the life, and the reality that no one comes to the Father except through Him. We must distinguish authentic Christian spirituality from the many non-Christian alternatives in the world. Only Christian spirituality concerns the shaping of our inner beings into the likeness of Jesus Christ. That is to say, it is unashamedly Trinitarian, revelational, Christ-centered, creational, salvational, both individual and corporate, and empowered by the Holy Spirit.(to be continue on Part 2)
Satisfy Your Soul Mar 28, 2000
Dr. Demarest takes the reader on his own spiritual journey that has transformed his life. While he is clearly a scholar of theology, he shares his personal experience of spiritual hunger and follows with the development of understanding that spirituality is more than an intellectual exercise. It must be holistic in the sense that a person's heart and soul must be included to fully grasp the power of God and the Holy Spirit in our lives. This awareness allows for a closer, intimate walk and ongoing understanding of the will of God. While spirituality has lead the author in his own life, cautions regarding the need for spritual discernment in our culture are presented. Reliance on the Word to feed the soul serves as the basis for continuing growth. Personal comtemplation is encouraged as a tool for continued spiritual growth. The reader is encouraged to study godly mentors and acknowledge spiritual friends for continued growth. Spiritual classics through time are referenced to guide the reader with a foundation for spiritual growth. This book shows how Demarest changed his own spiritual life. His examples that are abundantly documented with scripural refernces provide a guide for the reader toward a rich and full spiritual journey.