As a counselor, I often get asked, “Why do people need counseling?” Or, “Why do you think I need counseling?” I usually respond, “Well, I believe 100% of people could benefit from counseling.” Then, I’ll go on and on with a plethora of reasons why Counseling is beneficial; I’ll rattle off terms like self-awareness, safe space, and emotional support. I also emphasize how Christian Counseling can draw us closer to our Creator. The explanation is reasonable for some people and satisfies their curiosity about the counseling process. However, for others, Counseling doesn’t ever seem to be valuable or even make sense. Today, I believe God showed me in the simplest way how Counseling works.
We are busy settling into our new offices here at Choosing Him Ministries. The need to put together furniture, arrange rooms, hang frames, and touch up paint has consumed a lot of our time lately. However, we have been working hard through all the tedious tasks with excitement and anticipation for what the Lord will do with this space. I arrived this morning and decided to assemble a desktop filing system. Simple enough, right? Wrong! I spent about 45 minutes trying to get it right, placing sides and the frame backward, only to have to restart. I was even attempting to screw in screws with my fingers since I could not find a screwdriver to work with.
Let’s just say I was frustrated, to say the least. Perhaps this is also a lesson in sanctification?! Anyway, I digress… back to the story. After my feeble attempt to complete this task alone, with only my fingers to screw in the screws, I decided that I needed help. We were new to the building, so I didn’t really know any of my neighbors, but I was determined! I walked next door (through the rain) and introduced myself to a lovely woman with just the tool I needed! She willingly let me borrow her screwdriver for the project. I returned to my office and finished this little project in 5 minutes. Y’ALL! FIVE minutes. I had labored, toiled, complained, and tried to use my own strength, and it simply didn’t work. I needed to walk next door, get some help, and be provided with the tools I needed to face my current predicament. Then, I was able to use that tool to solve my problem.
This is a perfect picture of our need for Counseling. Sometimes, we face challenging circumstances in our lives, but we convince ourselves it won’t be too hard or that we don’t really need the help of others. Then, we labor, toil, complain, and fret about it, and our feeble attempt to complete the task makes us frustrated, overwhelmed, and unhappy. What if there was an option to get some tools to help with our life circumstances? What if we convinced ourselves to meet someone new, walk through the rain of shame and doubt, and actually get some help? Who knows, we might find ourselves in a space where we can approach our problems with new tools. Tools that we simply didn’t have before. We might release that frustration and anger and exchange it for peace and confidence.
So, back to our question, “Why Counseling?” Scripture tells us to seek peace and pursue it (Psalm 34:14). Counseling is just that, it is seeking peace and pursuing it with the tools that someone else has to help us solve our own problems! How simple is that?