The Load on Counseling: Biblical vs. Psychological

One true evidence of a church growing the right way (numerically, biblically, and spiritually) is the growth of the counseling load.  I probably counsel anywhere from 1 – 5 students a week.  I love to see people come in for counseling because it means the gospel preached is revealing sin, God’s holiness, our need for repentance, and the necessity for Christ to be glorified.

As our last KTL preacher spoke on Job 2 – 37 “Oprah and Other Christless Counselors”, I taught our college Sunday school class the next Sunday on Biblical vs. Psychological Counseling.  Here are a few points I made sure to get a cross.

Biblical and psychological counseling are completely different.  Biblical counseling starts with a set of presuppositions, such as: there is a God, all humanity struggles with sin, the Bible is the only true source for solutions to sin, salvation in Christ is necessary for life change, Christ died for sin and rose from the dead for our salvation, eternity with Christ is the ultimate goal for humanity.  Biblical counseling continues with identifying the true problem with every situation: sin and personal evil (James 1).  Biblical counseling identifies its method: mind transformation through God’s authoritative Scriptures (Rom 12:2).  The tool in which biblical counseling exercises its method is through the Scriptures and the church.  And the goal for every counseling scenario is that Christ would ultimately get the glory from every situation.   Continue reading

CRISIS COUNSELING: School Shooting in Madison

It has been a day filled with emotion, hurt, fear, drama, anxiety, worry, and chaos. The world of safety and security has been toppled upside-down for so many middle schoolers in the Madison, AL area. I heard from our secretary around 2pm today that the shooting had occurred at Discovery Middle. My phone started blowin-up with calls and text messages from concerned parents and students. Another youth pastor in the area called me and said he could get us into the schools (which were on lockdown) to minister to the kids. We went out there, got on campus, past the perimeter police, but then they wouldn’t let us in the doors.

We had several students from our church in the school during the time of the shooting.  A student was in the same hallway as the shooting, a student had just left the hallway right before the shooting, and several others were still in the building.  Some of our students knew the victim.  Some of our students knew the shooter.  One had lunch with him.  One had a class with him.  To say the least from this huge tragedy, our students are dealing with fear, anxiety, hurt, sadness, worry, vulnerability, doubt, and confusion.  A youth pastor’s question is always, “How do we counsel them?”  

1.  Whenever I counsel a student, I always make sure to listen.  Continue reading