“Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests before God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.” Php 3: 6-7 (NIV)
God created us for a loving relationship with Himself and others. Due to the fall of humanity, perfect fellowship was broken with God, and sin entered the world. With the fall, came all the problems and travails of this life. Humanity has been searching for peace ever since. Christian counseling is not a method per se, but a Biblical perspective on abundant living.
Our compassionate God provided His Son as a willing sacrifice for our sin, who also became the mediator between God and man. Through Jesus Christ, our relationship with God is restored, and we can enjoy fellowship with the Father again. We become His children. The Holy Spirit now indwells us and we are free to love our family, friends and neighbors in Christ. The challenge is to live according to the truth of God’s Word, wherein, the promise of peace in this life (and eternal security) awaits the believer.
The Christian counselor uses God’s Word, the Bible, like Paul’s instruction, “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the man of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work (2 Ti 3: 16-17, NIV).” In other words, the Bible is the standard by which we measure how to live a life pleasing to God; it is our operator’s manual.
Problems do not vanish when Jesus comes into the believer’s life. Our bad habits, negative thinking, and emotional burdens are still there. Becoming Christ-like, which should be the goal of every believer, is a life-long process. Indeed, it is the Father’s desire that we become like His Son. Maturity results as we develop an intimate relationship with God, while walking in the light of His truth. The Christian counselor encourages the believer to live in the truth of God’s word.
Jesus said in John 8: 31-32, “If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free (NIV).” What is the freedom Jesus means? Certainly, it is no longer being a slave to sin. Moreover, God desires to liberate us from worldly ways of thinking, so we can limit the conflict we create in our own lives. Because many of us harbor pain and brokenness in our hearts, our loving Father desires to bring healing and restoration. Our part is to trust that love in faith. As God directs our lives, we can know the promise of peace.
God’s Spirit works through Scripture to bring about change in His people. The transformed become God’s instruments of change in the lives of others. There is real hope drawn from real power that leads to a lasting difference. Our Heavenly Father takes us from victory to victory, and uses us to help others on the way. What a Mighty God we serve!
The biblical counselor, by definition, is committed to the Old and New Testaments as the only authoritative rule of faith and practice. The basis for both the faith and conduct of the biblical counselor, as well as his counseling theory and practice, is also God’s Word, the Bible. Therefore, as a Christian counselor, I affirm the following:
- The Bible is the only inspired, infallible and authoritative Word of God;
- There is only one God eternally existent in three persons: Father, Son and Holy Spirit;
- The deity of our Lord Jesus Christ, His virgin birth, His sinless life, His miracles, His vicarious and atoning death through His shed blood, His bodily resurrection, His ascension to the right hand of the Father and His future return in power and glory are proven by the prophets;
- That for the salvation of lost and sinful man, regeneration by the Holy Spirit is essential;
- That a person becomes justified by grace through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ;
- That the present ministry of the Holy Spirit is to enable the Christian to live a godly life;
- That there will be a resurrection of both the saved and the lost: the former to everlasting life, and the latter to eternal damnation;
- That believers enjoy spiritual union with our Lord Jesus Christ as His church.