As a Counselor and a Christ follower I wrestle with how these two fit together. However, more recently I have come to an understanding of this and it has been a breath of fresh air. Please hear me loud and clear, I deeply respect all religious beliefs and seek to understand each of my clients’ individual faith perspectives. I have been successful at counseling Atheists, Buddhists, Jews, Hindus, Christians, and other individuals encompassing a wide variety of spiritual paths and I LOVE to do so. My big question has been how does faith impact identity and self esteem? I do believe there is a spiritual component to things, just like there are behavioral, emotional, and physical components to things. This is my approach to integration; I would love to hear what your thoughts are. I integrate spirituality into the counseling realm, simply by a belief system. This belief is that God LOVES my clients so much and perhaps part of my job as a counselor is to empower my clients to see themselves for how God sees them. (I do not do this verbally, unless asked, it may simply happen by practicing unconditional positive regard)
As a culture we are facing epidemic proportions of low self-esteem. Most individuals struggle to some extent with depression or low self-esteem. A lot of us were raised in broken homes where we did not hear that we were loveable. The truth of the matter is God loves us all so much and we deserve unconditional love. However, according to our life experiences often we have only been shown conditional love. This conditional love manifests itself through defensiveness, low self-esteem, shyness, anxiety, and other mental health problems. You see, the problem with conditional love is that we always have to “earn” or “prove” to people that we are lovable. I believe the truth can set us free, the truth is God made us, loves us, and has given us many gifts, skills, and talents. But it all starts with the fact that we are 100% unconditionally loved right where we’re at, quirks and hurts intact. Nothing can change that! What are your thoughts? Who knows, maybe I’m wrong. Faith is being able to admit your could wrong, faith is just a hunch. If you are interested in counseling services in Aurora please contact us today for a consultation!
Blessings to you~