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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
There are three components to counseling, or what the Bible calls discipleship.
The hardest part is always the last part–application. Christians love studying theology and learning about sanctification. But many Christians struggle with taking these two disciplines and connecting them to real people with real problems practically–the application phase of discipleship.
All of our Mastermind students will not be able to be excellent counselors because God has not gifted them with the ability to be “high-end formalized counselors.” But they will be excellent disciplers, spouses, parents, small group leaders, and good friends.
Sanctify them in the truth; your word is truth. – John 17:17
When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth. – John 16:13
There is a difference between “parroting” information to a counselee vs. being pneumatic while counseling a person. The pneumatic discipler is not as fearful. They are “excellent and experienced” counselors who know how to bring customized soul care to unique individuals.
Here are three characteristics and differences between “parrot counselors” and a pneumatic ones.
If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.
But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind.
For that person must not suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways. – James 1:5-8
Ditch #1 – Fear – Uncertainty about how to disciple cannot be your starting point. The woman at the well said what she knew and then appealed to the crowd to meet Jesus for more detailed soul care.
So the woman left her water jar and went away into town and said to the people, “Come, see a man who told me all that I ever did. Can this be the Christ?” They went out of the town and were coming to him. – John 4:28-30
There are two ditches that you want to avoid. In the one is paralyzing fear that keeps you from doing anything and in the other is not knowing your limitations, believing you are something that you are not.
Ditch #2 – Certification – This second ditch of not discerning your ability is a lack of sober self-assessment, which is one of the unintended consequences with certification. It can connote an ability that does not exist. This problem is one of the reasons our program does not certify.
We train Christians to be the best that God has called them to be, but we don’t want to suggest that every person who finishes our program is at the top-range of discipleship ability.
If you want to learn more about our training, you’re welcome to read and listen to all the materials on this page.
Rick Thomas leads a training network for Christians to assist them in becoming more effective soul care providers. RickThomas.Net reaches people around the world through consulting, training, podcasting, writing, counseling, and speaking.
In 1990 he earned a BA in Theology, and in 1991 he received a BS in Education. In 1993 he was ordained into Christian ministry, and in 2000 he graduated with an MA in Counseling from The Master’s University in Santa Clarita, CA. In 2006 he was recognized as a Fellow of the Association of Certified Biblical Counselors (ACBC).