Book Review : The Pastor and Counseling by Jeremy Pierre and Deepak Reju
There's more to being a pastor than just preaching. There's more to being a pastor just being devoted to, "... prayer and the ministry of the word." (Acts 6:4 ESV). Even if you're the lead or head pastor, your responsibilities include shepherding the flock under your care which implies counseling. Many pastors, in any position, feel "unprepared" to counsel. Luckily Jeremy Pierre and Deepak Reju wrote The Pastor and Counseling. This a great introduction to what counseling is and how it's done.
Why this book is needed
The value that this books brings to a crowded "pastoral/biblical/gospel-centered" counseling market is in its simplicity. Even if you've never formally counseled someone before, this book will prepare you to do so with confidence. This is a "from beginning to end" kind of preparation. This book introduces counseling in a such a way that any mature believer can read it and put into practice.
Who needs this book
Even though "pastor" is in the title, this book is for anyone who is involved with care of souls within the church. This book would be useful not only for pastors, but also for small group leaders, children ministry teachers and helpers, youth workers; basically anyone who involved in discipleship with others.
"Sometimes we are more bothered by the thought of people leaving our church than we are by the thought of them hurting."
"People live right only when they are made right through Christ."
"Pastoral counseling involves at least three core elements: listening, considering, and then speaking."
"... the four most important commodes of any pastoral counseling relationship: trust, mercy, love, and respect."
"A pastor who does not confront when he should is not being loving; he is being fearful."
"Loving redemptive relationships are vital for Christian growth and can serve as a safety net when things are going poorly."
"Every Christian is capable of helping, even with the really hard stuff in the Christian life."
"As their shepherd, your primary goal is to keep Jesus Christ central to their understanding of genuine heart change."
"Counseling is an opportunity to walk alongside hurting folks, not as a distraction from your ministry, but rather as a necessary and good part of your labor on behalf of the church."
If you are a pastor you need this book. It doesn't matter if you're a young pastor or seasoned veteran in ministry, this book will help your counseling ministry. If you are involved in any way in discipleship and the care of souls within a local church, this book will help you do it better. You can get it here or here.
(I received a free copy of this ebook in return for this review.)