Studying Counselling: Part 2

Published: 12 May 2024

Spiritual experiences

Context: Adapted from a journal entry from May 2023.

Today I had a potentially significant experience, and I also got to explore it a bit as part of class.

During a process-oriented activity I somehow thought of my interest in the interplay between theology and psychology, and I had a noticeably strong sense to say something about this. As I spoke, I included the idea that some of the things that we teach in church could be damaging. I think two people in the group found me acknowledging this (as a pastor) to be quite impactful, and they said as much. In turn, I found their responses to be quite impactful and I felt a bit shaky in my chest afterwards.

Later in the day I took the opportunity to process this experience as a practice client (we took turns being ‘clients’ for other students who were practicing counselling). I’m not sure that I landed anywhere in particular, except that perhaps this is another piece in the puzzle of where God is leading me… Someone did ask an interesting question, though. I was asked if there could be some link between my call to teaching and my potential gift of healing. I hadn’t considered the possibility of healing in a more metaphorical way before… In some ways it would be a bit of a cop-out, but then again perhaps it could be seen as spiritual rather than physical healing?

Curiously, this relates to recent tensions I’ve been feeling about who will look after those who have been damaged by or disenfranchised by mainstream church. I wonder what it would look like to reach out to and minister to these people?

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