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Every Christian Should Be Counseling; It’s God’s Call on Our Lives

One of the unintended consequences of the biblical counseling movement is that counseling is for a select number of Christians. Though God has blessed the biblical counseling movement over several decades, one of the problems with the unprecedented growth is that we forgot to tell the church that counseling is for everyone, not just a few (Romans 15:14). God’s call on your life is to go and make disciples (Matthew 28:16-20), a synonym for counseling.

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We’re Not the World

The notion that only a few good men and women can counsel is secularized, not biblical. The world is bent toward individualism, while the church is a community of Christlike disciple-makers. The world believes in specialization, while the church believes in equipping everyone to do the work of ministry (Ephesians 4:11-12).

Being antithetical to the world is especially important for helping others by providing counsel because any form of counseling success must be contextualized and worked out within the local church community. (See this One Another chart.)

  • All believers have the Spirit’s empowerment.
  • All believers have the Spirit’s illumination.
  • All believers can pray.
  • All believers have a maturing understanding of God’s Word.
  • All believers have an experience with God.
  • All believers can love people.
  • All believers have God’s call to share His Word.
  • All believers have God’s call to be disciple-makers.

One Goal, Different Gifting

But aren’t some folks more gifted to counsel? The common assumption among Christians about Christian counselors is that it is a specialized field for specialized people. This assumption is usually because of an unbiblical definition of biblical counseling. Biblical counseling, defined, is one believer using God’s Word to help another individual.

Every believer is empowered, equipped, and urged to bring the truths of God’s Word into their spheres of influence. As Christ-followers (1 Corinthians 11:1) and Christ-imitators (Ephesians 5:1), we have the privilege to bring God’s Word to bear on any individual according to our giftedness and our understanding of God’s Word.

With the work of the Spirit active in us, we can continue to grow in both our knowledge and giftedness in applying God’s Word. Of course, there will be a few with higher-end gifting, and they are the ones who take on the more complex cases. Like singing, we all can do it, but some are better than others. Knowing your strengths and weaknesses is a blessing for all.

Tell What You Know

In John 4, the woman at the well encountered Jesus. After that encounter, she went into a village and began to tell (counsel) others about her interaction with Jesus. Regardless of where you are, you have something to say about your walk with the Lord. There is no perfect time or perfect maturity level you must attain before you can tell others about the transformative power of Christ.

You may not have all the answers you wished you had. You may not be completely comfortable in a counseling context, but there is a greater One who is with you, and He will empower and illuminate you to faithfully bring the Word to bear on the lives of others. The Spirit of God is the Counselor who operates in and through His children.

Settle it therefore in your minds not to meditate beforehand how to answer, for I will give you a mouth and wisdom, which none of your adversaries will be able to withstand or contradict (Luke 21:14-15).

When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come (John 16:13).

But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the end of the earth (Acts 1:8).

I myself am satisfied about you, my brothers, that you yourselves are full of goodness, filled with all knowledge and able to instruct one another (Romans 15:14).

Call to Action

Ultimately, the Spirit of God is the Counselor. As long as you do not quench (1 Thessalonians 5:19) or grieve (Ephesians 4:29) Him, you will experience amazement and satisfaction at what He does through you. Do you believe you are a biblical counselor? Perhaps you prefer the word discipleship. I like it too. It is a better, broader, and more accurate term for what we do. What hinders you from speaking God’s truth into the lives of others?

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