I was thinking about things that are essential to the Biblical Counselor. Of course, a solid base of Bible knowledge is critical, a love for His Word and for His people is also important. Beyond those things, there are a few personal things that I believe are required.
As servants of the Lord, we are to try to exemplify Him in our thoughts, words, and actions. Looking at how Jesus and then Paul ministered and served while they walked this earth I must conclude that these attitudes are necessary if I am to be a useful conduit for truth and change.
I have concluded that I am most useful when I am humble. Pride gets in the way of ministering to others. Humility reminds me that I am only one thought away from committing the most heinous sin. It reminds me that I am completely capable of saying or doing anything that a counselee confesses to doing.
Humility allows me to think of others as better than myself. I as a person am less important than my service to others can be. This is what Jesus modeled in His life. He owned nothing yet owned everything. He created everything yet for the most part lived in subjection to His creation. He lived this life for the sole purpose of glorifying God. He was incredibly humble and gentle.
I am most useful when I am vulnerable. Being vulnerable is one aspect of being humble. It shows others that I am on the same journey of sanctification that they are. Opening myself up and revealing that I have sorrows and struggles, and sin areas is risky but rewarding. It is risky because I know that others don’t always understand vulnerability and look upon it as a weakness and character flaw. What I have seen is that being vulnerable helps people to relate to me as a person. It removes all possibility that I will be placed on anyone’s pedestal and looked at as any more than a sinner saved by grace.
I am most useful when I am “real.” Being real and true to who I am today and who I expect to be tomorrow. I most certainly have not “arrived” and like every other human being, I encounter joys and trials and hardships every day. I endeavor to be honest in dealing with them; not hiding behind a mask of “Christian” and not pretending that all is perfect in my world. I don’t have a smile on my face all the time even though I have the joy of my salvation living within me. It is possible for both joy in Christ and sorrow over a human event to co-exist in life.
I am most useful when I am honest. Honestly includes all of the above and should characterize my life. Honesty shows that I am comfortable in my own skin and that it is more important to me to honor God than it is to look good to other people. Honesty reveals trust in God’s perfect plan in my life. It also reminds me that I am in need of the provision of the cross every moment of every day.
Add these qualities to your life in increasing measure, and you will become a very useful servant to the Lord in the lives of other people.