Jump directly to the Content


Consulting the Wonderful Counselor can be the key for pastoral counselors.

Some time ago I counseled a church member who felt trapped in a cold, nonsupportive marriage to an alcoholic husband. She had come feeling hopeless, looking for comfort and suggestions. I tried to help her sort the options, hoping to open up some new ways of thinking about her problem.

"Do you think marriage counseling might help?" I asked.

"Oh no. My husband would never go," she answered.

"Have you thought about a trial separation?"

"I have no way to support myself, and we can't afford two homes."

"Have you ever been to an Al Anon meeting?" I pressed.

"I couldn't bear the embarrassment of going to a public meeting like that."

For every new avenue I tried to travel, she had a quick detour.

Years of living with emotional barrenness had made her rigid. Despair had become such a constant condition of her life that she could no longer see beyond the pain. Finally, she apologized for taking up my time and began to gather up her purse and her wet tissues. I felt so inadequate. I had been unable to give ...

Support Our Work

Subscribe to CT for less than $4.25/month

Homepage Subscription Panel

Read These Next

Why We Need Prayer
Why We Need Prayer
God loves the little things, the secret things his servants do.
From the Magazine
Bible Apps Are the New Printing Press
Bible Apps Are the New Printing Press
How evangelical computer programmers changed the way we read Scripture.
Editor's Pick
Forget Charisma. Look for the Weak and the Slow.
Forget Charisma. Look for the Weak and the Slow.
Pete Scazzero discusses how pastors can identify and train healthy leaders.