Having observed the field of Christian counseling over the past years I have noticed some issues that need to be addressed:
1. Christians are often reluctant to seek counseling due to fear of judgment/stigma inside of the church.
2. When Christians are being counseled in a faith-based setting they are often fearful of being honest about their struggles because of a reluctance to let a fellow Christian know the truth about how they do not measure up to the ideals that scripture establishes for daily living.
3. Christians sometimes think that all that is required for true life change is faith and prayer. To admit that these attempts have not worked feels like admitting a lack of faith or a poorly disciplined prayer life.
I believe that the caring presence of a truly non-judgmental person has profound power to begin the process of change and healing.
All dealings with a practicing therapist are legally required to be kept confidential. This includes the fact that an individual has sought help at all, as well as any and all content discussed within the context of therapy. So, unless your therapist feels that you are in danger of harming yourself or others, no one will know that you have asked for help; even in the extreme case mentioned, your referral to a local hospital will be kept confidential.
All good therapists have been a client in therapy as well as a clinician. And most therapists are drawn to the field because they have had significant struggles of their own to overcome. Therefore, we literally understand how it feels to sit in your seat as a first time client.
Though faith and prayer are essential elements of a Christian’s life, sometimes we need further help in seeking the change we desire. Remember, even Jesus asked for support from His disciples in his time of need.