Seasons of the Soul: Stages of Spiritual Development

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  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2009-07-30
  • Publisher: Intervarsity Pr
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Yet many of us live largely detached from this fact. Days go by, but it can be hard to feel a sense of movement or growth. Sometimes, in periods of doubt and depression, we might feel stuck in the same place for months.

Author Biography

Bruce Demarest is professor of Christian formation at Denver Seminary in Littleton. Colorado. He is author of Soul Guide. Satisfy Your Soul. The Cross Salvation, General Revelation and Who Is Jesus? and coauthor of The Human Person in Theology Psychology (with James Beck) and Integrative Theology (with Gordon Lewis)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgmentsp. 9
Prefacep. 11
Christian Life: A Journeyp. 11
Pattern of the Journeyp. 12
Analogies from the Developmental Sciencesp. 14
A Helpful Paradigmp. 14
Biblical and Historical Sourcesp. 15
The Book and Spiritual Formationp. 16
Initial Orientation: Seeds of New Lifep. 17
New Life in Christp. 18
Delights of Salvationp. 21
Struggle with the Fallen Naturep. 23
Contemporary Examplesp. 24
Enticements and Pleasuresp. 26
Knowing and Doingp. 28
Spiritual Infancy and Adolescencep. 30
Additional Dangers and Threatsp. 34
Moving Forwardp. 37
Painful Disorientation: Seasons of Distressp. 39
Peaches and Cream?p. 40
Life's Inevitable Trialsp. 41
Destabilizing the Soulp. 43
Experienced by Old-Covenant Soulsp. 44
Engaged by New-Covenant Peoplep. 46
Disorientation in Christian Historyp. 48
Affliction Hits Homep. 51
Redemptive Outcomes of Trials and Afflictionsp. 52
Extreme Ascetic Afflictionsp. 56
Comfort Amidst Trialsp. 57
Painful Disorientation:
Understanding Why We Sufferp. 60
The Sinful Human Heartp. 61
The Fallen World Orderp. 64
Satan and Demonsp. 65
Life's Distressing Misfortunesp. 69
A Traumatic Life Transitionp. 70
The Spirit of Godp. 72
Redemptive Seasonsp. 76
Painful Disorientation: Dark Night of the Soulp. 79
Well-Documented in Scripturep. 80
Experienced by Prominent Christiansp. 84
Explained by John of the Crossp. 87
Interpreted by Other Christian Authoritiesp. 90
An Evangelical Assessment of the Dark Nightp. 93
The Dark Night and Clinical Depressionp. 98
Transformational Outcomes of the Dark Nightp. 99
Painful Disorientation: Redemptive Responsesp. 103
God and Disciples: Each Doing Our Partp. 104
Turn from All Known Sinp. 105
Be Assured of God's Lovingkindnessp. 108
Express Feelings of Distress to Godp. 109
Abandon All to Godp. 109
Recognize the Value of Suffering in the Divine Economyp. 113
Journey to One's "Inner Sinai"p. 114
Praise God for Past Merciesp. 118
Walk with a Spiritual Companionp. 120
Reach Out to Othersp. 122
Take Courage, Never Give Up!p. 123
Joyful Reorientation: Savor of Resurrectionp. 126
Fresh Illuminationp. 128
Radiance of Resurrectionp. 129
Intimate Unionp. 131
New Healingp. 134
Wisdomp. 136
Becoming a Child Againp. 138
Journey Outwardp. 140
Living in Lovep. 142
Contemplate Eternal Realitiesp. 145
We Shall Be Like Himp. 147
Conclusionp. 150
Our Appointed Goalp. 150
Jesus Our Coursep. 151
The Inevitable Pressurep. 152
A Repetitive Patternp. 155
Steady Progressp. 156
Joyful Arrivalp. 157
Appendix: Spiritual Journey Paradigms: Classical and Contemporaryp. 160
Notesp. 170
Index of Namesp. 188
Scripture Indexp. 189
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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