Pastors should not be judgemental and should refer members of their church to secular counselors while praying and loving them

Using Secular Counsellor to Complement Pastoral Care

In a world that is characterized by many challenges affecting the social and spiritual lives of people, many people are seeking external support and guidance. This is especially true for Christians who are overwhelmed by challenges in their normal life. For the Christians, the first refuge for consolation, guidance, and nourishment is the church where the pastors are. In this pastoral care Sunday, there is the need to focus attention on the sources of care for spiritual and social challenges affecting Christians today.

The pastoral care preaching will be focused on creating an environment for the congregation to understand that besides the confines of the church, there are other sources of guidance on social and even economic challenges. It is the objective of this sermon to increase the trust that the people have on secular counselors and help them understand why and when one should seek their assistance. However, the sermon will also seek to bring to the attention of the congregation the importance of using wisdom and consciousness to discern the credible and the trustworthy counsellors from among the many that are available in the market today.

This sermon, should serve as an important guide to the congregation on the importance of counselling and seek psychological help early enough. Further, the congregation will also be expected, through the sermon to come to terms with themselves and to understand what to expect in Christianity and secular counselling. This should help to limit the undue expectation in pastoral care or counselling.




The Sermon Outline

The sermon will begin by introducing the importance of seeking help regarding life challenges. This will be based on a discussion of the existing health, social, spiritual, financial and even work-related problems. The congregation must be made to understand that life has many challenges and one cannot be expected to healthily navigate all the problems on their own. When a problem is shared, it is believed to be half-solved.

Seeking assistance: In all the identified problems facing human beings in their lives, there are the best sources of solutions for them. One would not be expected to seek a solution to a health problem from a financial advisor before going to a healthcare profession. Likewise, a spiritual problem cannot be entrusted a traditionalist who has no authority or even knowledge on the matter at hand. Every problem should be addressed by the person who can help solve it in a healthy manner.

The Importance of Pastoral Care: Pastoral care provides opportunities for Christians to converse and share about their problems in a healthy environment. The carer facilitates the conversations and the sharing and may even be handling one person with a particular problem. For many years, this kind of care provision has helped many people to achieve healing and acquire solutions to their problems in life. Many Christians have confessed having been able to regain control of their lives from pastoral care and related therapies. In addition, others have experienced great transformations in their lives following pastoral care. However, like any other source of solutions, pastoral care has limits.


Where else to get Solutions: As earlier mentioned, solutions for life problems have to be sought wisely and diligently. With all honesty, a pastor should be able to accept limitations on challenges that he or she cannot handle. Instead of providing the congregation or the person with challenges with suggestions that are not based on experience and knowledge, the pastor should instead accept that he or she has no intellectual and experience-related authority to handle the problem. Referral to a different and able counsellor should then be done.

Linking Secular Counsellor and Christianity: Christianity does not ride us away from the realities of normal life. If it did, we would not be experiencing the challenges of normal life and would not need any other intervention. Since this is not the case, therefore, any challenge facing Christians should be directed to the most appropriate source of the solution. Secular counsellors are an important aspect of counselling. They can use their experience in handling different cases to solve problems affecting Christians in their lives. Some of the life problems that cannot be solved using the spiritual and biblical perspectives can be handled more easily by the secular counsellors. While the pastors and the pastoral car provides the spiritual guidance, an input from a different source is necessary to spice up therapy. It is, therefore, necessary to recognize that the secular counsellor help complements pastoral care through their experience in counselling.






The Expectation

Being Christians means that we are all ready to face life’s problems from a Christianity perspective. Being guided by the Biblical teachings and the lessons learned from the Christian teachings, we are expected to have an approach to life that is quite different from that of other people. This is the kind of approach that will assist us to reach the highest level of Christian living and manifest the best values of Christianity in our normal life.

When we face challenges as Christians, it is always necessary to seek guidance first from the church. Pastoral care provides the avenues for this kind of guidance. The pastor can offer the necessary environment for conversing and opening-up to get relief. This helps to relieve one from stresses, and once the problems are shared, they are easily solved.

However, understanding that some problems require more than just the pastoral care, the pastor need to consider referring the client for more experienced counselling. Pastoral care meetings should be limited to at most five. Through these meetings, the pastor will be able to interact with the person facing challenges and identify their problems. This will then lead to the pastor having to probe and understand the problems and also identify the best source of assistance available to the person. It is through this process that the pastor will refer the person to a credible and ethical secular counsellor who will assist in solution seeking. The duty of the pastor then remains to pray for and spiritually guide the person through the counselling process.

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