Posts Tagged ‘peace’

INTERVIEW: Gregory K. Popcak, Ph.D.

Q. How did you come up with the concept for Broken Gods?

Christians often talk about how we’re “broken” and how we need to be saved but that doesn’t

resonate with a lot of people. They think Christians mean that people are terrible, horrible,

no‐good, very bad creatures and that God wants us to sit around all day in our awfulness feeling

awful about ourselves. But that’s not it at all!  Human beings are wonderful creatures! God, himself, pronounced us, “very good” (Gen 1:30) at the beginning of time.

And yet, as good as we are, we were made for so much more. We were made to be gods‐‐perfect, immortal, utterly confident in who we were, where we were going, and how we were going to get there. Our First Parent’s sin ripped all of that away from us and we became, in a sense, broken gods–separated, lost in the cosmos, alone, naked and ashamed.  But God never gave up on his original plan for us and he continues to work through all time and space to complete in us a work so wonderful we can’t even begin to imagine it.  He intends to restore the divine light within us and make us the gods we were always meant to be.

 

Q. In the book you make the claim that God truly intends to make each and every one of us a god. Those are bold words! Where do they originate? And what do they mean for Christians today?

They are bold words, so bold they would be blasphemous if they weren’t spoken by Jesus himself in the Gospel of John (Jn 10:34).  In fact, the idea that God intends to make us gods is a central doctrine of Christianity that was universally accepted by 1st Century Christians, by the Church Fathers, and even the Protestant reformers. The concept theologians refer to as “divinization” is mostly lost to Christians today but more than a moldy theological concept, it has profound, practical implications. In fact, it recasts our entire understanding of our Christian faith!

Many people believe that being Christian is about trying to be good, and since they feel like they can be good on their own‐‐or at least good enough‐‐they don’t feel they really need God. But that has never been the Christian view. Christians do not believe we need God to make us good. We need God to make us gods! Only by developing the kind of relationship with God that allows him to transform our deepest and even darkest desires into the engines of our ultimate perfection can we hope to achieve the destiny for which we were created; to be gods who can live with God and be loved by God for all eternity.

 

Q. One of the things that you talk about in the book is the idea that sometimes our darkest desires can reveal God’s plan for transformation in our lives. Without giving away the entire book, can you give us a glimpse into how this works?

Hidden behind our deepest and even darkest desires are seven basic, human longings; namely, the ache for abundance, dignity, justice, peace, trust, well‐being, and authentic love. Everything we do‐‐even the stupid, offensive, and destructive things‐‐represents our feeble attempts to satisfy one or several of these unconscious longings.

When we act in ways that disappoint or hurt ourselves and others, we become consumed with guilt, anger, self‐criticism and sometimes hopelessness that things can ever get any better for us. God wishes to deliver us from this pain. He longs to show us, step‐by‐step, how to authentically satisfy these deepest longings woven into the fabric of our soul. When we let God teach us how to meet these longings according to his plan, he not only frees us from fear and want and leads us to abundance in this life, he ultimately transforms us into gods who, through his grace, can achieve perfection, immortality, and ultimate love in the next.

 

Q. Who is the target audience for your book?

This book is for people who experience an ache in their hearts that tells them that they were made for “more” but struggle to know what that longing really means much less how they can begin to satisfy it. Readers will encounter powerful insights and surprisingly practical tips to help them uncover the spiritual pathways that lead to ultimate fulfillment, unconquerable love, and unimaginable joy.

 

 

Q. What do you hope readers will take away from Broken Gods?

I want readers to discover the joy of knowing that all the people in their lives who told them that they should sit down, be quiet, and stop dreaming are wrong. In fact, our biggest dreams cannot begin compare to the shocking, even scandalous abundance God imagines for us. It is my hope that Broken Gods will reawaken readers’ spiritual imaginations so they can begin to see and experience the amazing transformation God intends to bring to pass in their hearts and in their lives.

 

Q. Is there anything else you’d like to add?

Broken Gods isn’t just another self-help book. It reveals the stunning truth that God wants to satisfy every longing of our hearts in ways that both lead to total fulfillment in this life and ultimate fulfillment in the next. In Broken Gods, readers will find a treasure map that leads to hope for weary hearts, joy for troubled times, and strength to live every part of their lives more abundantly.

 

To request a review copy or to schedule an interview with Dr. Gregory Popcak, please contact Katie Moore, publicist, kamoore@penguinrandomhouse.com, 719-268-1936.

 


PRESS RELEASE: Discover the Destiny God Has in Store for You

“The doctrine that humans are destined, through Christ, to become gods is a lost treasure that is at the very heart of Christianity. Hidden in plain sight, it is a truth that can transform every part of your spiritual, emotional, and relational life if you know how to claim it.”  — Dr. Gregory Popcak

When God looks at you, He sees a god.

This idea may seem crazy, even blasphemous, but that’s only because we are used to seeing ourselves as the world sees us—broken, struggling, failing, and frustrated.

These mysterious words, “you are gods,” were spoken by Jesus Christ himself in the Gospel of John. They point to a deep longing hidden in our hearts and remind us that we were created for more.

In Broken Gods: Hope, Healing, and the 7 Longings of the Human Heart (Image, June 2, 2015), Dr. Gregory Popcak unveils the incredible vision that God has for each of our lives and provides the tools and resources we need to discover our ultimate destiny.

Using the seven longings of the human heart as a foundation, Dr. Popcak demonstrates how the seven deadly sins, the seven divine longings, and the seven heavenly virtues relate to one another.  Although it may seem contradictory, Dr. Popcak show us how our deepest desires, and even our darkest desires, can work together to reveal God’s plan for transformation in our lives. Readers will discover, step-by-step, how to transform the weakest, most broken and even shameful parts of themselves into the engine of their perfection.

“We are meant to be gods, but because of our fallen humanity, we are, for now, broken gods in need of deeper healing—a healing that God makes possible through his divine gifts and our efforts to stop living in fear of our deepest desires—the seven divine longings of every human heart,” writes Dr. Popcak. “When we turn our longings over to him, he sets us on the path to becoming the gods we were created to be—whole and healed, peaceful and perfect, faithful, fearless, and fulfilled.”

Broken Gods is an ideal resource for personal contemplation or group study and includes questions for reflection, prayers, and action items.

 

In Broken Gods you will:

1)      Discover the truth about “divinization,” the ancient and surprisingly orthodox Christian assertion that God truly intends to make you a god and what that means, practically speaking, for your life today.

2)      Come to see how your desires, even your darkest and most troublesome passions, expose the engine God intends to use to work this amazing transformation in your life.

3)      Engage in a step-by-step plan for cooperating more effectively with the miracle God wants to work in you so that you might experience the deep joy that comes from both satisfying the seven divine longings of your heart and fulfilling your destiny to become the god you were meant, by God, to be.

 

About the author

Dr. Gregory Popcak, the founder and director of the Pastoral Solutions Institute, is the author of over 20 books and programs and an internationally recognized expert in Catholic pastoral counseling. He has degrees in psychology and theology, as well as a master’s degree in clinical social work and a Ph.D. in human services. He is the host of More2Life Radio, heard on over forty stations around the country. Dr. Popcak’s blog, Faith on the Couch, can be found at Patheos.com. He is an in-demand guest on both Catholic and secular radio and television programs and his work has been featured in the LA Times, The Washington Post,  Fox News, U.S. News & World Report, NPR’s Here & Now, OSV Newsweekly, and many other media outlets. Visit him at online www.CatholicCounselors.com.

 

To request a review copy or to schedule an interview with Dr. Gregory Popcak, please contact Katie Moore, publicist, kamoore@penguinrandomhouse.com, 719-268-1936.

 


Image Author, Sister Joan Chittister, to Appear on Oprah’s “Super Soul Sunday”

 

“Super Soul Sunday - Oprah and Sister Joan Chittister:  A Life of Passion, Purpose, and Joy”  airs Sunday, March 1 at 11 a.m. ET/PT on OWN: Oprah Winfrey Network.

Oprah speaks with Sister Joan Chittister, a Roman Catholic nun and author of over 50 books, for a discussion about new ways of looking at God, the vital force that women represent in the church and in society, and the divinity of merging spirituality and science.  Sister Joan is an outspoken advocate of justice, peace and equality – especially for women all over the world, and has been one of America’s visionary spiritual voices for more than thirty years.

Photos courtesy of Harpo Studios, Inc. / George Burns

Chittister’s newest book is Between the Dark and the Daylight.

 

 


INTERVIEW: Sister Joan Chittister

Q&A with Joan Chittister

Author of

Between the Dark and the Daylight

 

Q. What is your hope or goal for this book?

I am hoping to generate good conversations about the unseen elements of life that often affect our decisions more than they should.  It’s a matter of helping people think through all the dimensions of life as we deal with the rest of it.

To put it another way: Life is made up of context as well as content. These things—the social environment, out attitudes, our goals, our sense of self—all affect the way we come to our decisions and why. The purpose of this book is to bring those things to consciousness so we can come to understand why we think what we think as we go through life.

It’s an attempt to make the invisible parts of life visible to us in ways that free us to operate at our best.

 

Q. What made you decide to write about this topic?

I think this topic helps to take the sense of aloneness out of life. Everyone deals with each of these things like what it means to be part of the crowd, for instance. The question is when is the crowd helpful—and when not. What part of being in a crowd is more harmful than good. Discussions like that alone make the discussion of particular issues both more real and more honest.

Life is a series of paradoxes—contradictions that are as true as they are false—that confront us all our lives. The point is to look at each of them from every perspective and bend them to our strengths, not simply surrender to the pitfalls they present us with.

 

Q. In the introduction you write, “Whatever it is that we harbor in the soul throughout the nights of our lives is what we will live out during the hours of the day.” How do we focus our souls during the nights so that we can live with purpose and stability during the days?

In the first place, we have to focus on the attitudes we bring to every challenge in life. We have to ask whether or not we have examined each of them thoroughly or only with prejudice.

We have to grow beyond our fears in order to become our best and strongest selves. But to do that we need to look them in the eye, up close and personal. Then, we can concentrate on the issues we’re dealing with and not be distracted by elements of life that have not real bearing on the issue itself.

 

Q. You talk about this premise that the spiritual life begins within the heart of a person and so “when the storms within recede, the world around us will still and stabilize as well.” What a great visualization! Can you offer a few practical tips for settling our inner storms?

By admitting our fears and prejudices to ourselves we make room for other ways of thinking. Then we no longer get up in the morning geared for battle.

Fear and prejudice end when we can admit each of them, examine each of them with others, and understand the value and weakness of each position. Once we do that, we will be capable of talking out other difficult things together, too.

 

Q. If you could choose one message from the book to really drive home to your readers, what would it be?

A culture in transition is a culture of prejudices, of polarized populations, of ideas cemented in fear. It’s time to examine all of them in the light so that we can all move on together,  open to new ideas, full of courage and understanding of people who think other than we do.

 

To request a review copy or to schedule an interview with Joan Chittister, please contact Katie Moore, publicist, kamoore@penguinrandomhouse.com, 719-268-1936.


PRESS RELEASE: Angels All Around Us by Anthony DeStefano

Following his two bestsellers, A Travel Guide to Heaven and Ten Prayers God Always Says Yes To, DeStefano opens readers’ eyes to the spiritual dimension surrounding everyday life in a way that makes it a living reality. Angels, demons, the connection of loved ones who have passed, and even the presence of God are all immediately accessible, and DeStefano shows how knowledge of this can help people maintain a profound sense of inner peace.

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