A Biblical Counseling Process: Guidance for the Beginning, Middle, and End
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What makes counseling biblical? What does the biblical counseling process entail? What is the focus of each stage of the process? Lauren Whitman, an experienced CCEF counselor, addresses these questions and more in A Biblical Counseling Process, sharing a process from start to finish that will help guide counselors in reaching the hearts of their counselees and connecting them to Jesus, who brings hope and change.
Although there is not a one-size-fits-all formula for biblical counseling, Whitman captures the scope of a counseling process and identifies two major tasks for the beginning, middle, and the end. Each of the chapters works together to explain, describe, support, and illustrate these tasks. The author also provides a case study that continues throughout the book, providing readers with an example of how to implement the process.
As part of CCEF’s Helping the Helper series, A Biblical Counseling Process will equip counselors, pastors, and lay leaders to approach their counseling ministry intentionally so that their work faithfully points people to the Lord, considers who he is, his heart, and what he calls us to. Useful for new and seasoned counselors alike, this resource will equip helpers with a vision for what a progression of counseling looks like.
“Each person we counsel is unique and the challenges they face have their own complexities, but each counseling experience has a beginning, a middle, and an end. Whitman provides an excellent framework that guides the overall flow of counseling while acknowledging and leaving room for the individualization that comes with each person. She offers a big picture overview of the process and dives deep into details on key components of counseling—first session, transitions, closing session, etc. This book answers a myriad of frequently asked questions regarding the practical matters of counseling. Students of biblical counseling and new counselors will have answers to these burning questions and experienced counselors will also find insights and tips to hone their skills as ministers of God’s Word. This book will be a required read for my students.”
Curtis W. Solomon, Executive Director of the Biblical Counseling Coalition; cofounder of Solomon SoulCare
"Two things especially stand out in the refreshingly clear prose of Whitman’s contribution to biblical counseling literature. First, Whitman leads by example in applying specific Scriptures to specific, vivid counseling situations. Second, she provides simple, doable foci for counselors at each stage of counseling and clear benchmarks for where each stage begins and ends. I commend this highly accessible, gracefully written book to anyone looking to do vocational biblical counseling!"
Alasdair Groves, Executive Director of the Christian Counseling & Educational Foundation (CCEF); coauthor of Untangling Emotions
“As the biblical counseling movement has matured and grown, there has been a significant need for solid teaching on biblical counseling methodology. Counselors and helpers can have good theology and training, but they need to be equipped for the actual work of counseling—how to sit and listen, how to structure their sessions, and so on. Lauren Whitman has written a brief but packed resource that fills that gap marvelously. It will undoubtedly be my new go-to guide in training helpers and counselors.”
Jonathan D. Holmes, Executive Director, Fieldstone Counseling; author of Counsel for Couples: A Biblical and Practical Guide for Marriage Counseling
“Scripture does not reduce the care of souls to predictable steps or specific techniques. If it did, we would rarely pray and we would have little reason to listen. But Scripture does reveal wise love and real help. Lauren brings these two together in a way that gives practical direction to strengthen care for others.”
Edward T. Welch, Faculty and counselor, Christian Counseling & Educational Foundation (CCEF); author of numerous books, including A Small Book for the Anxious Heart
“The process of biblical counseling is neither rigidly scripted nor loosely improvised. But what does it look like in practice? In this much-needed book, Lauren Whitman gives shape to skillful love as she charts a wise path between those two extremes, carefully explaining the major tasks associated with each stage of counseling. Full of practical examples that vivify these major tasks, Lauren’s book is an ideal resource for training lay counselors and for use in graduate biblical counseling programs.”
Michael R. Emlet, Dean of Faculty and counselor, Christian Counseling & Educational Foundation (CCEF); author of Saints, Sufferers, and Sinners: Loving Others as God Loves Us
Lauren Whitman, MA, is a counselor and faculty member at the Christian Counseling & Educational Foundation (CCEF), where she has served for a decade. She also serves as the developmental editor of the Journal of Biblical Counseling and is the author of A Painful Past: Healing and Moving Forward and A Biblical Counseling Process. Whitman, her husband, and their two children make their home in the Philadelphia area.