40 Days of Discipline

40 Days of Discipline:  Day 29 – Counsel

2 Comments

16 Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts. 17 And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him. (Colossians 3:16 – 17, New International Version)

Theme:  The Local Church

Context:

Today we turn our attention to the Discipline of Counsel, and we will begin by considering questions about the role of Counsel in your local church. 

Before considering the questions, it is worth remembering that Counsel works best in an atmosphere of trust. 

Primary Questions:

  1. Does your local church encourage the sharing of wisdom, knowledge, and expertise within the church?
  2. Do the church leaders work actively to develop an atmosphere of trust (e.g., confidential information is kept confidential, and gossip is discouraged)?
  3. Are people in positions of influence adequately screened?
  4. Is hero worship discouraged and expertise honored in your local church?

Optional Secondary Questions (if you have the time):

  1. Does your local church have a mentorship program?
  2. Does your church have adequate forums for intergenerational dialogue?

Your Feedback:

While you are not expected to share your answers to the questions above, we would still love to hear from you.  Based on your answers to the questions, what are your general observations about how local churches relate to Counsel?

2 thoughts on “40 Days of Discipline:  Day 29 – Counsel

  1. In all countries I’ve lived, Pastor of the church is always my mentor. I think to have a pastor praying for you and your family especially when there are issues and challenges being faced in your journey as a believer is crucial.

    Due to the nature of my husband’s work, every two or three years, I have a new church that I always consider as the source of my support group spiritually and emotionally. But my home church is always in Japan. I’ve been a member there for more than 30 years. From my experience, a pastor who is mature and exposed to different cultures (meaning the church members are from mixed backgrounds and different countries) is better in counseling and ministering to its members. They are more understanding and can relate more to its members. It is frustrating when you have a pastor, where you share your personal struggles like for example issues with family members or friends and then you will see that the pastor is not really taking you seriously, not encouraging you enough or not replying to your message like it takes ages for him to reply, or in some cases, he may call you but it feels like he is rushing and very dismissive. I experienced that to some point in my church. I know pastors are busy and they also need to be encouraged and supported with prayers of the church family. For me, being sincere and transparent is important in counseling. No pastors or leaders of church is perfect and we all know that God is in control and only using Pastors and leaders of church as instruments to minister to people. I think in counseling being really open and honest to the one being counseled is a key to a successful church member/family and leader relationship. As humans we tend to judge others and this should be avoided in counseling.

  2. How Fitting that our focus turns to ‘the discipline of Counsel’ and the role it plays in the church as we move towards Passion Week. It is instructive that during this time Christ’s focus was on preparing his disciples for his departure.

    In my church counsel happens at several levels within the various groupings. Serious matters and those outside the ability of the leaders goes to the priest. The pandemic has been a disruptive force and many of the traditional safe zones for sharing were removed. However, this period has been a useful teaching and learning tool about returning to the basics and really being each others keeper. The area of counsel has its place but as members develop relationships with Christ and each other counsel happens in community. The church must always be a place of refuge & trust.

    We don’t have a structured mentorship program, mentorship happens indirectly, As persons answer the call to their vocation training and preparation happens.

Leave a Reply to Margaret Chapman-Farley Cancel reply