A Message from Your BCC Team: At the Biblical Counseling Coalition, we love using our “megaphone” to fulfill our BCC mission: to advance the ministry of the biblical counseling movement. Throughout January, we’re helping you to learn about vital biblical counseling ministries—like today’s post from Jim Newheiser and Craig Marshall of the Institution for Biblical Counseling and Discipleship (IBCD).
An Exciting Year
2014 proved to be an incredibly exciting year at IBCD with the release of our new Observation videos and the completion of our Care & Discipleship training. The enthusiastic response from the biblical counseling community to these materials thrills us. Our hope is that these efforts will serve to build up the body of Christ so that more local churches and individual believers will be equipped to help one another through life’s problems with the Word of God.
Over the years we have seen hundreds of people wanting godly help in crisis and feeling clueless about where to turn. We hear continually from pastors and church members who wish they had the resources to get more training or to train others. While live trainings and counseling observation are an ideal way to do this, we have become burdened to craft a way for people to receive training regardless of their geographic location, scheduling or financial constraints.
CDC in the Community: Ventura, California
At the Ventura County Rescue Mission all of the staff are going through Care and Discipleship training. The Mission offers a wide variety of programs to serve the needs of the poor and homeless in their community including counseling services for over 100 men and women assigned to their alcohol and drug recovery program. Director John Saltee, a graduate of Westminster Seminary California, says that already in the 8 weeks since they began the training he has seen a positive impact. “We are more unified, praying for each other more,” he observes. “Now all the counselors are using their Bibles…pointing to God and His wisdom….” He and other leaders have a vision to take Care and Discipleship to similar rescue missions in their region.
CDC in the Classroom: Berlin, Germany
Students in the second year of the Biblical Counseling program at Europaiches Bibel Trainings Centrum are now able to watch Care and Discipleship Observation videos in their “Beobachtung und Analyse” (Observation and Analysis) class. Each observation video is first transcribed in English and then translated into German. The EBTC audio-visual team then adds subtitles to the video. “For many of the students, this is the first time they have seen pastoral care of this quality in action,” says missionary Nick Kalena. “The Observation videos provide a much-needed, high quality resource here in Germany for demonstrating to believers how to biblically care for one another. They are kindling for the counseling movement that is just starting to ignite here.”
CDC in the Church: Minden, Nevada
“Going through the CDC curriculum was a clear choice for our church,” says pastor Jason Ching of Grace Community Church. A few months ago the leadership of Grace Community began offering Levels 1 and 2 of Care & Discipleship Training during Sunday School. They have seen an enthusiastic response with an average of 50 attendees per class. “Being able to give biblical counsel is an indispensable part of the spiritual war we are fighting,” says Ching. “As Jim Newheiser says, ‘We’re all counselors; the question is whether we’re good counselors or bad ones.’ So many brothers and sisters desperately need God’s Word to restore them, to convict them, to build them up, and to give them hope. Yet so many Christians are unequipped for this ongoing work. The need is grave and the potential gains are wondrously profound.”
What Exactly Does the Training Consist of?
Care & Discipleship training is laid out in a three-part course which can be viewed on DVD, streamed or downloaded from the website, or even listened to for free as MP3 audios. Level 1 is a great introduction to biblical counseling involving 15 hours of instruction examining the basics of biblical counseling, principles of change, peacemaking, trials, anger, depression, worry, and temptation. The next 15 hours in Level 2 cover key topics such as marriage and family, parenting challenges, divorce and remarriage, and biblical decision-making. This level also further explores the interplay of body and soul in relation to medicine and mental disorders.
The course culminates in Level 3 with the recently-released Observation videos. Ten hours of video follow the development of four different counseling cases with three different counselors. Through these videos viewers get to see the concepts they have been learning applied to individual counseling scenarios.
How Do You Use It?
We have crafted materials for each level so that this training can easily be used in any group setting. Levels 1 & 2 are available on DVD, audio, and Vimeo with student handbooks to go along with each session. The Leader Guide makes it easy to take a class or small-group through the material with suggested discussion breaks and discussion questions and answers. Level 3 Observation videos are available on DVD and Vimeo and have their own handbook designed to simulate the live observation process an observer would have in our counseling center.
Observation can serve as a stand-alone component or be integrated into the Level 1 & 2 materials as suggested in our Teaching Guide. Individuals are welcome to work through the training on their own as well, but the interaction afforded by a group setting is ideal.
How Long Does It Take?
The total instruction time for the course is 40 hours and can be adapted to suit the needs of any group or individual. Some people opt to work very quickly through the material in a few intensive weekend or week-long training sessions. In our Teaching Guide we have laid out a suggested plan to cover all the material over four, sixteen-week classes, assuming each class is an hour in length. For example, a small-group or Sunday school could commit to meeting for 16 weeks and cover a quarter of the lectures as well as one of the cases from Observation. The next class could begin immediately after that, but it allows for breaks to accommodate scheduling as well as entry and exit points for newcomers or people interested in certain segments of the training.
What is CDC Certification?
CDC Certification is an optional component individuals may pursue to enhance their training. It involves a few additional steps including listening to electives, taking a short exam after Levels 1 & 2, interviewing with church leadership, reading and responding to key counseling texts, and writing a reflection to Observation. It can also be useful to those interested in ACBC Certification as it breaks the process into smaller steps. Those who complete Levels 1-3 will find themselves well prepared to continue the final steps required for ACBC Certification.
How Do I Start?
Access the CDC materials on our website here to get started right away. You can also watch an introductory video, read FAQs, view a complete list of products, and purchase training materials from the CDC Store.