If there is one area that I wish I had stronger training in, it would be in counseling. No one tells you in seminary that you’d do so much counseling on the local church level. Perhaps part of the problem of pastors seeing so many counselees is that the church has lost it’s obligation and privilege to counsel one another? Bob Kellemen and Kevin Carson and others helpfully renew the church’s responsibility to do just that.
In Biblical Counseling and the Church, we are reminded that each of us in the church of Jesus Christ are empowered to speak the truth of the Gospel to each other. Counseling then becomes a natural expression of the “one anothers” of the New Testament and the process of discipleship. The book begins with chapters highlighting the need to see counseling as the vision of the entire church. Then, this is followed by chapters focusing on small groups as an advantageous medium for doing biblical counseling within the church. The book moves on to consider the relationship between counseling and church discipline, the process to equip biblical counselors in your church, how counseling can be used as a means of outreach, and finally the history of biblical counseling.
While a multi-author book will have stronger and weaker chapters, overall the book did an excellent job of presenting the case and providing the means for seeing counseling be an every-member ministry of the local church. If you want to take some of the burden off your pastor, pick up this book and pass it on to others in your church. Each of us, gifted with the Gospel, can pass it on to others who are hurting and suffering and therefore counsel one another.