Desiring to Help

You are qualified to be a biblical counselor if you have a desire to help people. There is undoubtedly something different about people helpers. Many are described as having gifts of mercy, encouragement, discernment, and compassion. Others are servants and givers, and still others are truth tellers who desire to redirect the sheep that have wandered off the path.

There are some personal requirements for those who desire to restore others in addition to what has already been said in the previous posts. Restoration must be done with affectionate admonition because included in the greatest imperative of Jesus Christ was to love one another. Our love is to be sacrificial for those we counsel. Our instruction must be covered in prayer and faithful to the text of Scripture we choose. We must be wary of the “what it means to me” method of hermeneutics.

Our attempts to restore must be presented in a spirit of meekness, with a kind and patient heart. Many of the people we meet with have never heard this before and while what you say will be plain to you it may not be to them. Much of the church is very psychologized and is accustomed to seeker driven theology that does not emphasize the disastrous role of sin in our lives. Patience is required as you may explain the same truth over and over as you help them to grasp the truth.

There is occasionally a temptation to become angry or impatient with them, especially if they tend to make the same errors repeatedly. There are other more productive steps to take in this case that will reveal the true issue behind the repeated failures. You will see that it is usually not worth it to rebuke this counselee in anger or display a harsh attitude toward them.

Also remember to consider yourself as you teach, rebuke, correct and train others. Some of the best counseling that takes place in my office is happening to me! Galatians 6 tells me to be very careful about this business of discipling others because it is so very easy to become prideful in the process. Think about name brand pastors who were involved in counseling and are now divorced or have scandal attached to their names because of a hard fall. They said it could never happen to them, they would not, could not ever sin like the other guy! The reality is that you and I are only one thought away from acting on the worst of sins.

We must examine ourselves honestly in the light of Scripture. If you have a tendency to be critical it will serve you well and hurt you as a Biblical Counselor. Discernment is of course crucial, but beware that you don’t become strictly a fault finder. If you are blunt or pointed in speech it is easy to be misunderstood as harsh and uncaring. Endeavor to be loving in dealing with people.