After returning to college in my forties, I finished my degree and became a licensed family therapist. Five years earlier, my husband had been in a serious accident that left him in a vegetative state and us without financial security. Through those difficult years, I learned to depend on God for even the smallest decision. It was during this time that He taught me what later became an essential skill in my profession as a therapist—how to hear His still, small voice.
Three years into private practice, I could see that the theories and approaches I had learned in school were helping my clients, but the deep wounds in their hearts were not getting healed. In answer to my prayers, I read Proverbs 2:1-3 (NLT), “My child, listen to what I say, and treasure My commands. Turn your ear to wisdom and concentrate on understanding. Cry out for insight and ask for understanding.”
With the client’s permission, I began to ask God to reveal to them the origins of their emotional wounds, while I listened for His direction on how to proceed. He would reveal where the pain originated and pinpoint where there were lies about who they were in their belief systems. I began to apply God’s truth like salve to their wounds. Miracles began to unfold—most of which I had little to do with other than getting out of the way. My clients who preferred a more standard therapeutic approach benefited because I was relying upon God’s wisdom rather than my own. Many of them had been seeking just such help, but had not found it.
As a disciple of Jesus I still value and use my educational tools, now under God’s direction. Each morning as I prepare for clients, I invite Him, the Wonderful Counselor, to sit with me in my therapist’s chair, and I ask Him to make my office a place of healing, restoration, and refreshment. As I strive to incorporate the ways of God into my own practice, I pray and look for opportunities to disciple and mentor godly therapists to walk in the ways of God in our professional calling. The goal is worthy and the rewards are great.
*Phyllis Oswald Rogers, MA, LMHC, is the founder and director of the inLife Clinic (www.inLifeClinic.com) in Bellevue, Washington. She also serves her community as a police and fire chaplain.
Reflection Points: the Character of God in Health, Medicine, and Wholeness
- Our Designer (Psalm 139:14-16)
- Our Maker (Psalm 95:6-7)
- Our Source of Care (Psalm 27:10; 1 Peter 5:6-7)
- The Giver of Life (Job 33:4)
- The Physician (Luke 8:43-48)
- The Healer (Exodus 15:26)
- Our Counselor (Isaiah 9:6)
- Our Consoler and Comforter (Psalm 23:4; 94:19; 2 Cor. 1:3-4)
- Our Physical Trainer (Psalm 18:35; 1 Cor. 9:24-25; 1 Timothy 4:8)