Faith in Counseling
Counseling is a time of self-reflection and self-evaluation, a moment to look over your life and see where you can make positive changes to counteract the negative occurrences that come at inopportune moments in your life. During my studies, I was encouraged by countless professors to not bring my faith into the counseling arena unless Spiritual Counseling was my approach. What I need to know and possibly understand is how do you leave the most important part of why you do what you do outside of what you do? It is my faith that has allowed me to not only live out my purpose but to live in my purpose, which is spiritual. According to Isaiah 61:1: The spirit of the Lord GOD is upon Me, because the Lord has anointed Me to preach good tidings to the poor; He has sent Me to heal the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to the captives, and the opening of the prison to those who are bound – It is this scripture that gives me the purpose and promise to understand people beyond what they say and do and speak to the very essence of who they are and what they struggle with.
My approach to counseling consists of treating the individual as a whole – mind, body, and spirit, and regardless of what your spiritual affiliation is, I am committed to accomplishing that task. According to Corey (n.d.) spirituality can be “a powerful source of meaning and purpose” to a person attempting to find balance in their life. Everyone has an inner voice and essence that is trying to be heard, trying to make its life wishes known but not many individuals have been taught how to channel that inner voice into purpose, promise, or passion. That is where a faith-filled counselor comes in! Over 70% of the population subscribe to some form of faith (Religion in America: U.S. Religious Data, Demographics and Statistics | Pew Research Center (pewforum.org), and just because it may not mirror my faith exactly, I have the desire to help others translate the language of their faith into something that allows him or her to make informed, sound decisions and life choices that not only removes the stigma of having a mental health diagnosis but also the stigma of receiving effectual and effective mental health counseling.
My faith allows me to love God and love people through counseling without preaching God to people, which opens the door for anyone to walk through and find their safe space and foundation. Find your voice, use your voice – Just because your song may have different lyrics than someone else’s does not mean that you cannot find a way to sing it, and live it, out loud!!
Cory, G. (n.d.) Integrating Spirituality in Counseling Practice. Retrieved October 7, 2021, from *body1 (counseling.org).