Broad Aim of Program

The broad aim of our Mastermind Program is to grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.

But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be the glory both now and to the day of eternity. Amen. – 2 Peter 3:18

In particular, we want to serve the body of Christ by teaching Christians how to apply God’s gospel with grace to discipleship and counseling contexts. We believe the care of souls—the ancestor of what we call biblical counseling—should be at the heart of the Christian community. Unfortunately, many believers and churches are sub-Christian in the care and advice they provide. In large part, this course exists to redress this deficiency.

The primary objective of this training is to provide you with customized, hands-on, supervised training, as well as exposure to the writings and thoughts of those who teach and practice a God-centered, Christ-exalting, gospel-driven, Holy Spirit-empowered, Word-saturated care of souls. And we mean this most radically.

The world of Christian discipleship and counseling is riddled with imprecise theology, which opens the door for misleading counsel and, in turn, results in the misapplication of biblical truth in the lives of fellow Christians. This problem hinders the process of sanctification, which we supposedly exist to advance.

Instead, as practicing Christians, we should be relentless in pursuing a richer, broader, and more profound grasp of God’s Word so that, as one outcome among many, we possess a richer, broader, and more profound psychology (i.e., Biblical anthropology, doctrine of sin, doctrine of atonement, the role of the Holy Spirit in providing wisdom and illumination) than any secularist could hope to practice.

To accomplish this worthy goal, the design of this course is intended to provide a sustained pace of focused, ongoing training, and supervision that is specific to who you are—your gifts, strengths, and weaknesses—and what God is doing in your life.

We believe that as you listen to others and give advice, whether in the context of the local church or the kitchen table, you ought to be committed to fulfilling Paul’s admonition to,

Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who has no need to be ashamed, rightly handling the word of truth. – 2 Timothy 2:15

Because we believe God’s Word is the primary instrument in the counselor’s toolbox, we want to help you to become more skilled and discerning in the use of this tool.

All Scripture is breathed out by God and profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, and for training in righteousness, that the man of God may be competent, equipped for every good work. – 2 Timothy 3:16-17

It is our desire throughout this program to teach you how to “shepherd” your heart first of all. Without mastery over your heart, you will lack not only the integrity to speak into the world of another person, but you will also lack the depth necessary to lead another person through Scriptural transformation.

As you grow in your understanding and experience of God’s gracious work in your life, it is a natural step to teach others what God has done in your life (cf. 2 Corinthians 1:3-4). Therefore, as you begin to work through this material, please be careful to make prayerful and personal application to your life. With personal understanding and practice, you will be able to shepherd others by modeling Christ’s life and by giving wise, Scriptural guidance.

I have carefully developed this program, and have given much scrutiny to this material. But, it will not unpack and change you even though it is intense and well-designed to help you grow. You don’t change because you read about it; neither will you disciple or counsel well because you acquired knowledge about counseling.

We do not provide “canned” answers. You are a distinct person, loved by the Father, saved by the Son, empowered by Spirit, and guided by the Word. Our goal is to come alongside what they are doing in your life to help you maximize their excellent work in you, in real and practical ways.

Counting it joy,

Rick