THE SCOPE OF BIBLICAL COUNSELING: Biblical counseling deals with the entire range of problems confronting mankind including: broken marriages, parent child relationships, fear, depression, alcohol and drug abuse, tension, anxiety, worry and any other problems that may result in mental and/or physical immobility. In short the Biblical Counselor is equipped to deal with any problem dealing with ourselves, our relationship to God or our fellow man (2 Peter 1:3).
MEDICAL NEEDS: Biblical counselors believe in the total health needs of the counselee. Your counselor may recommend that you have a full or specified medical examination. If medical assistance is required, counseling will continue in conjunction with medical advice.
1) RGCC is a biblical counseling and teaching ministry. The purpose of RGCC is the equipping of the saints by the administration of the Word of God to their particular problem. RGCC is not staffed by licensed psychologists or psychiatrists, nor does it prescribe medications. RGCC should be considered a faith-based healing and teaching ministry rather than anything associated with the medical professions.
2) As a person using the services of RGCC you must understand that if taking prescription anti-depressants or psychotropic medications you are to remain on them unless you consult with your prescribing doctor and he or she is in agreement that you terminate them.
3) If you have persistent thoughts of suicide RGCC urges you to seek medical help and if you talk of suicide during a session you will be referred to the proper authorities.
LENGTH OF COUNSELING: The initial counseling session will last 60-90 minutes. Subsequent sessions will be one hour per week and will continue for and average of eight to twelve sessions. If you respond quickly to Biblical counsel the number of counseling sessions may be lessened. However, if the counselor does not observe definite change in the first few weeks, he or she will seek to identify the cause of the failure and discuss it with you in order to help you to correct it. Phone: (816) 694-1677
ELEMENTS OF BIBLICAL COUNSELINGYour counselor will use all of his/her skill in applying Biblical principles to enable you to glorify God in your life and to enable you to gain victory over the problems that are depriving you of the peace and joy that God has promised to you in His Word. Your counselor will concentrate in three areas that are necessary for Biblical change to take place.
Hope - In Jesus Christ we have a great High Priest who has suffered and been tempted in all things, yet He never sinned. Because of Christ, even though you may be facing every sin common to man, you can have victory. God has promised that He will not let you be tempted beyond your endurance and that He will provide a way for you to have victory in the midst of your temptation (I Cor. 10:13; Heb. 4:14-16).
Change - In Christ we can learn how to lay aside the old selfish ways of living and put on the new ways of living in a manner worthy of the Lord Jesus Christ. We can learn to please God in every area of our lives. We can learn to live a godly life and to live in such a way that we will be increasing in our knowledge of God and our ability to relate to others. Biblical counseling will enable you to make practical changes. (Eph. 4:20-24; Col. 1:10).
Practice - We need to prove ourselves to be doers of God's Word and not merely hearers of the Word. It is only in the actual practice of the Scriptures that we shall be blessed in what we do, and only then will we please the Lord (James 1:22-25; Proverbs 28:13).
APPOINTMENTS & WAITING PERIOD: Your appointments will be scheduled after receiving this packet. You will be called within 2-5 days to set up your initial appointment. If you are not called by then please call 816-694-1677 or email us through the counseling center's email Reigninggracecounsel@rgcconline.org. RGCC does biblical counseling by appointment only. We have a limited number of appointments available and frequently there is a waiting list. It is important, therefore, that once you make an appointment you keep it. If you have to cancel please do so by the preceding Friday.
LOCAL CHURCH INVOLVEMENT: In order to achieve lasting victory over the problems of life, it is vital that each person become established in a consistent Christian walk. The Lord has provided the local church as the discipleship center (Hebrews 10:24-25). Therefore, it is important that counseling sessions be accompanied by church attendance, participation in a group Bible study and other discipleship activities in your local church.
ACCOUNTABILITY PARTNER: It is our desire to return the care of hurting people to the church which is why RGCC is invested in community outreach and why we are willing to disciple people from outside our own fellowship. Through our education classes we equip others in the body of Christ to disciple those in their own circle of influence.
Our ministry experience has shown it is beneficial and in some cases essential to involve a concerned friend or family member in the time that our counselees spend in an intensive discipleship or Biblical counseling relationship with us. Because of our commitment to the local church as the long term care provider of each individual believer, as well as the multiple benefits we have seen listed below, we strongly recommend that each individual or couple coming to RGCC for help come with an accountability partner (or accountability partners for a couple).
The purpose of this is to expose others to the principles of biblical counseling and provide an extra resource of friendship to those in need.
Please inform your church’s leadership about your intent to seek biblical counsel. We would appreciate the opportunity to work with your leadership for your benefit and God’s glory.
MATERIALS NEEDED AND EXPECTATIONS: You will need a notebook and your Bible at all sessions, including the first session. The biblical counselor counsels from their theology, not psychology, so we also recommend that you obtain a Study Bible to assist you in your studies of the Word. We have found the MacArthur or the ESV Study Bible to be of great assistance in helping our counselees understand key theological concepts. Be sure to bring the Bible with you each time. Come with high expectations. You will find hope and encouragement even during your first session. We are confident that the Word of God has solutions to all of life’s problems (2 Timothy 3:16,17; 2 Peter 1:3), and that includes an answer to the difficulty that prompted you to come.
CONTACT POLICY: Our desire is to help you in the process of biblical growth and change. We understand that there are times you may have a question or situation that arises between your scheduled appointments. We welcome your questions in these cases. However, our counselors have been inundated with email and phone calls from people wanting our counselors to counsel via email and over the phone. It has become necessary to request that our counselees reserve phone calls and emails for short clarifications about your counseling. Please call 911 for emergency issues. Thank you for your cooperation in this area!
All Christians struggle with sin and the effect it has on our lives and our relationships. Whenever believers are unable to overcome sinful attitudes or behaviors through personal efforts, God calls them to seek assistance from other believers, and especially from church leaders, who have the responsibility of providing pastoral counseling and oversight (see Romans 15:14; Galatians 6:1-2; 2 Timothy 4:1-2; Hebrews 13:17; James 5:16). Therefore, this church encourages and enjoins its people to seek counsel from and confess sins to each other, and especially to our leaders.
We believe that the Bible provides thorough guidance and instruction for faith and life (2 Timothy 3:16-17). Therefore, our counseling is based on scriptural principles rather than those of secular psychology or psychiatry. Unless they specifically state otherwise, none of those who counsel in this church are trained or licensed as psychotherapists or mental health professionals, nor should they be expected to follow the methods of such specialists.
God calls our leaders to set an example for us “in speech, in life, in love, and in faith and purity” (1 Timothy 4:12). Therefore, we expect them to treat counselees with every respect and courtesy, and to avoid even the appearance of impropriety or impurity during counseling (Ephesians 5:3). We also expect counselees to promptly report any conduct that fails to meet this standard. (We practice the principle of men counseling men or women counseling women and we take extra measures of accountability when we have to make exceptions. Please be aware of this as it could affect your appointment scheduling.)
There are occasions when our counselors do not have sufficient time to meet with every person who asks for counseling. At such times we expect our counselor to refer them to another source of godly counsel.
The Bible teaches that Christians should carefully guard any personal and private information that others reveal to them. Protecting confidences is a sign of Christian love and respect (Matthew 7:12). It also discourages harmful gossip (Proverbs 26:20), invites confession (Proverbs 11:13), and thus encourages people to seek needed counseling. Since these goals are essential to the ministry of the gospel and the work of the local church, our counselors will carefully protect all information that they receive through pastoral counseling, subject to the following guidelines.
1)When a counselor needs to seek advice from other counselors or leaders in the church (Proverbs 11:14);
2)when the person who disclosed the information, or any other person, is in imminent danger of serious harm unless others intervene (Proverbs 24:11-12). This includes suicidal intent with a plan or homicidal intent with a plan;
3)when a person refuses to repent of sin and it becomes necessary to promote repentance through accountability and/or redemptive church discipline (Matthew 18:15-20); or,
4)when counselors are required by law to report suspected abuse (Romans 13:1), including abuse of children and the elderly.
We believe God intends sexual intimacy to occur only between a biological man and a biological woman who are married to each other (1 Corinthians 6:18; 7:2-5; Hebrews 13:4). We believe that God has commanded that no intimate sexual activity be engaged in outside of a marriage between a man and a woman.
We believe that any form of sexual immorality (including fornication, adultery, homosexual behavior, bisexual conduct, bestiality, incest, and use of pornography) is sinful and offensive to God (Matthew 15:18-20; 1 Corinthians 6:9-10).
We believe that in order to preserve the function and integrity of Reigning Grace Counseling Center as part of the local Body of Christ, and to provide a biblical role model to the Church and the community, all persons employed by Reigning Grace Counseling Center in any capacity, or who serve as volunteers, are to abide by this Statement on Marriage, Gender and Sexuality (Matthew 5:16; Philippians 2:14-16; 1 Thessalonians 5:22).
We believe that God offers redemption and restoration to all who confess and forsake their sin, seeking His mercy and forgiveness through Jesus Christ (Acts 3:19-21; Romans 10:9-10; 1 Corinthians 6:9-11).
We believe that every person must be afforded compassion, love, kindness, respect, and dignity (Mark 12:28-31). Hateful and harassing behavior or attitudes directed toward any individual are to be repudiated and are not in accord with Scripture or the doctrines of Reigning Grace Counseling Center.