PASTORAL CARE PHILOSOPHY
Throughout God's story, we see that hurt, pain, brokenness, and sin have been part of the human experience after Adam and Eve chose to disobey God. We also believe that pastoral care and/or professional counseling can be a helpful way for us to process through the effects of sin and pain in our lives.
We believe Jesus came to undo all the effects of Adam and Eve's choice. He came to redeem and restore "all things" (Colossians 1:18–20). Jesus' work of redemption is full and complete and has far-reaching implications for every human being. Therefore when others express a need for counseling, we affirm the truth that the gospel addresses every challenge they are facing.
The only question that remains is, "What is the best context for a person to be immersed in a gospel perspective that will help address his or her challenges?" We believe that God has designed the church body in such a way that the needs of people can be met by the body. Our Gospel Communities are communities of ordinary people who, because of the gospel, are organizing their lives around Jesus' mission of making disciples. As they live a gospel-centered life, the deep needs and hurts of people can be addressed with great effectiveness.
However, we understand that there are some problems and circumstances that require more intentional care and shepherding. For these instances, we may be able to offer one-on-one pastoral care.
WHAT TO EXPECT
Pastoral care involves meeting with one of our trained pastors who will provide counsel from a gospel-centered perspective to help you meet the challenges of life in a way that will bring glory to Jesus and allow you to more fully enjoy His love and plans for your life. However, our vision for growth and healing is larger than a few one-on-one meetings with a pastor. Rarely does lasting change happen in isolation. We will likely encourage you to be involved in the life of our church in a variety of ways as we meet together.
We will work together to apply the truths of the Bible to life through the lens of the gospel. Our counsel will be based on scriptural principles rather than solely those of psychology or psychiatry. We believe that the Bible speaks to all of life and to all of its problems, but sometimes it takes careful thought and prayerful wisdom to know how to make those connections. We don't believe that the Bible is simply a how-to book or a recipe book for happiness. We believe that the Bible ultimately points us to a person and a relationship - Jesus Christ as our Savior and Redeemer.
We believe that real change comes when people learn to see themselves and their problems in the context of a living, vital relationship with Jesus. This does not mean that you must be a Christian to profit from pastoral care, although we believe that deep and lasting change is brought about only by God himself. However, the Bible is never brought to bear in an artificial or heavy-handed way.
Pastoral care providers are NOT licensed as psychotherapists or mental health professionals. However, you may be referred to a care provider who is under the direction and supervision of a licensed psychologist. If so, you will be notified of this prior to meeting with that care provider. You will have access to that supervising psychologist if the need should ever arise. If it is determined by you or your care provider that you would benefit from the care of a licensed professional you will be referred to one.
Anyone desiring pastoral care should complete a request form by clicking on the link below. (Please know that we value your privacy. This form is confidential and will only be seen by the church elders and pastoral care provider.)