A Personal Experience of Shame… and Hope

I felt shame last week. The township sanitation worker slapped me with a written warning. It was bright orange and plastered on my garbage can for everyone to see. Apparently, he found unauthorized material in that garbage can—namely, errrr….. a bunch of concrete. I wish I could say that I wasn’t aware that heavy items […]

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Grieving Broken Dreams

Lilly Park

Lilly Park

We often talk about grieving in relation to death. But a form of grieving can also occur when certain life dreams become just that—a dream. Here are a few stories with changed names which illustrate this truth. Mary is a widow after being married for over fifty years. Sally’s husband hasn’t been faithful to her for many years and now may have a form of dementia. Andrea suffered a stroke a few years ago. She used to be a successful businesswoman. For each person, there was one word in our conversation that started a flood of tears—grief. Continue reading

Finding Success When Counseling an Opioid Addict

Lucy Ann Moll

Lucy Ann Moll

When Cecilia* scheduled a counseling appointment, she told our center’s secretary that she popped pain pills and needed help for addiction. This case sounded challenging, but with God I knew it would be a success, for “He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus” (Phil. 1:6). Becoming more like Christ is a primary goal of biblical counseling, isn’t it? But what if a counselee doesn’t grow in Christ-likeness? Then is counseling a failure? We will explore the answers to these questions through the case of Cecilia. Continue reading

Shame

Anne Dryburgh

Anne Dryburgh

“You were a mistake.” “You are good for nothing.” “You are one big disappointment.” These unkind, hurtful comments are spoken so that the person receiving them feels a sense of shame. The experience of shame comes as a result of thinking that one is a failure. In other words, the message is conveyed that there is something inherently wrong with the person and that he or she will never be able to meet the standards that others expect. This means that the person is, by nature, inadequate. Continue reading

Decisions, Decisions, Decisions

Joe Keller

Joe Keller

The university years are filled with potential and opportunity. Students are exploring the realities of their identity in Christ beyond their parents’ instruction. There’re not playing with Monopoly money anymore, the training wheels are off, and they know it. These are the days that shape a trajectory for the rest of their lives. At times life can become overwhelming. What major should I choose? Should I take out more student loans? Should I go overseas this summer? Should I get married? What if I don’t get married? Should I create a startup company and surf every day for the rest of my life? Continue reading

Maddening Injustice

Anne Dryburgh

Anne Dryburgh

Injustice is maddening. By this, I mean we usually become intensely angry when we are confronted by it and the suffering experienced by the victims.

This past week I have had numerous conversations with people who were struggling to deal with their angry hearts in the face of injustice. Continue reading