Article XIII: Biblical Counseling Policy
General counseling by Grace Church will primarily be a function of the pulpit ministry (2 Timothy 3:16-4:2; 2 Peter 1:3-8). However, from time to time there will be special need for crisis, premarital, preventative, or corrective counseling that the staff may deem necessary. In these special counseling occasions, the goal of the counseling is to disciple people into a deeper relationship with God, to equip them better to receive and pour out love to our neighbors, and to please God more effectively through worship and service by helping them become more like the Lord.
The following specific objectives, strategies, and guidelines will shape the discipling of the counselee by the counselor for maturity in Christ:
(a) We will address any immediate problems in a manner according to Scripture.
(b) We will seek to develop an inward character (attitudes, beliefs, purposes, affections) which conforms to Christ and bears fruit within our community (Romans 8:28-29).
(c) Both the short-range (a) and long-range (b) objectives will be approached by attempting to transform the thinking patterns of the counselee (an aspect of “renewing the mind”) through appropriate Biblical principles and a humble dependence on the Holy Spirit (Romans 12:1-2; Ephesians 4:22-24).
(d) At no time will a counselor counsel a counselee of the opposite sex without appropriate safeguards.
(e) If a counselee is unwilling to change thinking patterns or behavior, or if there is an unwillingness to complete the designated assignments given by the counselor, counseling may be terminated.