Old-Fashioned Pastor in a Therapy Age

If applied wisely and in partnership with Scripture, many psychological principles can lead people down discipleship's road.
—Louis McBurney

Years ago, a pastor attending Marble Retreat was trying to climb out of the deep gorge of despair. Several years before coming to Marble, she had taken her struggles to a psychotherapist and wound up in bed with him. Her troubles, as you might imagine, compounded exponentially.

In one of our first counseling sessions, I asked her what seemed like an obvious question.

"How have you dealt with your sin of adultery?"

A funny look crossed her face. "No one has ever called it that before," the pastor said. "But it is sin, isn't it?"

"Yes, it is."

Right then and there she repented. It was the catalyst to her recovery.

Later, the irony hit me: this pastor's adultery had happened several years back, but apparently nobody in her church, denomination, or circle of friends had mentioned that what she did was a sin. Neither had the professional counsel she'd received ...

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