Every human heart longs to love and be loved. And every heart is unfulfilled until it falls in love with God.
Why does anyone want to “fall in love?” With anyone? Perhaps it is because we instinctively recognize that love is the most pleasurable of all human sensations. Love makes us feel good. It satisfies our deepest needs. And if falling in love with another human being can do all of those things . . . how much more powerful could it be to fall in love with God?
Falling in Love With God answers that question. Drawing from the ancient love story of Hosea, a prophet whose life and prophecy map how to fall in love with God, this book will fulfill the desires of all who long for a different–or deeper–relationship with God. This thoroughly biblical book will help and bless readers who long to love God with all their hearts. . . but just aren’t sure why they don’t, if they could, or how it happens.
Matthew 13:45-46 (NIV) tells us: “Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a merchant looking for fine pearls. When he found one of great value, he went away and sold everything he had and bought it.”
God sees each of us as a pearl of great value. He paid dearly for us with His Son, Jesus! We are more valuable and precious to Him than we can ever imagine!
As counselors, people come to you hurting and broken; they tend to feel that they have no value, that they are invisible, hidden, overlooked, and that nobody cares.
Can you, as a counselor, see them as a pearl of great value, as God does?
Question: “Why is a pearl so valuable?”
The answer is: “In order to have a pearl of great value, the pearl must go through a tremendous amount of irritation; and during the process, it becomes refined and beautiful.”
Some pearls have more irritations than others, just as some people have more irritations than others.
The people that come to you are going through irritations—emotionally, physically and/or spiritually.
Many times when your counselees are going through their hurts, pains, and suffering, they tend to feel that there is no hope.
You, as a temperament counselor, have a calling on your life—to help God’s hurting people.
You are there to give them HOPE – Jesus!
God wants you to see each person that comes to you as a “pearl of great value.”
With the APS profile, God has given us insight into how He created us with our strengths, weaknesses, and needs—an inside look at His pearls of great value.
Since you too have gone through a refining process with your hurts and suffering and pain, you can use what you have gone through to help and encourage your counselees.
We are going to look at the Supine in Inclusion to see what may be irritating them and causing them stress in the Inclusion area:
1. Fear of Social Rejection:
Supines in Inclusion want and need to interact with people; however, they tend to perceive rejection and will stand back and wait for a personal invitation rather than initiate. If they do not receive a personal invitation, they may isolate themselves and withdraw from people. This, in turn, will cause them stress as they need to interact with people.
Physically: Because of their perceived fear of rejection, they may suffer from high blood pressure, stomach problems, headaches, ulcers, etc. Emotionally: Because of their perceived fear of rejection and feelings of having no value, they may find themselves on a roller-coaster ride full of self-pity and self-rejection. They tend to cry a lot because they are thinking that people do not like them. As a result, they want to run away from other people and themselves; however, as we all know, we cannot run away from ourselves.
Spiritually: Because of their perceived fear of rejection, they may even fear that God will reject them, too. They may even think thoughts such as, “If people are going to reject me, God probably will, too.”
Therefore, they need to learn:
That God created them and accepts them just as they are and that it is all right to initiate. If they learn to initiate, it will alleviate many of their physical problems.
That it is all right to have a good cry because crying helps them to relieve their stress. After a good cry, they can then take a deep breath and move forward.
That God is always with them, so they are never alone. They need to take time to talk with God (and listen to Him), read the Holy Scriptures, surround themselves with songs of praise and worship, and find a church where they can fellowship with God’s people.
See Isaiah 41:13: “For I the Lord thy God will hold thy right hand, saying unto thee, Fear not; I will help thee.” See also Hebrews 13:5: “…I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee.”
2. Inability to say “no”
Supines in Inclusion tend to be unable to just say “no.” They want to say “no,” but they are afraid that the people around them will be displeased or upset with them. This, in turn, will tend to cause them stress.
Physically: Because of their inability to say “no,” they can become physically drained and unable to complete their commitments. Yet they will still take on more responsibility than they can possibly handle. This, in turn, will tend to cause them to be stressed to the “hilt.” All because they cannot say “no.”
Emotionally: Because of their inability to say “no,” they can become stressed (emotionally drained) when they are overloaded with responsibilities. They will then become easily irritated with people. They may have a difficult time sleeping because they cannot stop thinking about everything they must do. The Supine in Inclusion needs to socialize with people and also needs to do tasks.
Spiritually: Because of their inability to say “no,” they can become so overwhelmed with tasks and obligations that they do not have any time to spend with God. When they do pray, they tend to have a long list of complaints about how people are overloading them.
Therefore, they need to learn:
To say, “No, I cannot take on any new responsibilities until I pray about it.” By doing this, they will no longer be as stressed and drained and will be able to follow through on their commitments.
That when they say “no,” they will not be as emotionally drained and will not be as irritated with people. They need to be with people as well as do tasks. Learning to say “no” can help them to maintain balance between doing tasks and being with people.
That God gave them a servant’s heart and a gentle spirit, but He did not call them to be a doormat.
See Acts 5:29: “…We ought to obey God rather than men.” See also Colossians 3:23-24: “And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily, as to the Lord, and not unto men; Knowing that of the Lord ye shall receive the reward of the inheritance: for ye serve the Lord Christ.”
3. Fear of expressing their needs
A great deal of stress can occur when the needs of the Supine in Inclusion go unmet because of their fear of expressing their needs. Physically: Because of their fear of expressing their needs, they tend to withdraw physically from people. They tend to become angry because they expect people to know what their needs are and, as we all know, it is not realistic to expect people to read their minds. They will then tend to say, “My feelings are hurt,” rather than say, “I am angry,” when others do not meet their needs. They believe that it is much easier for them to say, “My feelings are hurt.” The bottom line is that their “hurt feelings” are actually their internalized anger.
Emotionally: Supines in Inclusion tend to “bury” their needs deep inside of them. After a period of time, these unmet needs will begin to stack up, and when the Supine in Inclusion can’t handle anymore, their anger will come spewing out. When this happens, they no longer want to serve others as they feel unappreciated for what they do for others. Supines in Inclusion tend to feel that if they must express their needs, others will comply out of duty or responsibility, and they will never know if the others genuinely wanted to help them.
Spiritually: Supines in Inclusion may withdraw from God because they believe that no one, including God, feels that they have any value. They can then lose their “gentle” spirit because they have pulled away from the Spirit of God.
Therefore, they need to learn:
To admit that their “hurt feelings” are actually their internalized anger and must be dealt with. After they admit that it is anger, they can then forgive the person who angered them. Once they forgive those who “hurt their feelings” (made them angry), they will no longer have stress in this area. They must remember that their body is the temple of the Holy Spirit, and they must learn to maintain this body in order to fulfill the call God has on their life.
That others cannot read their mind and that when they do not express their needs, they are sending messages that they have no needs. This is called indirect behaviors, and if these needs go unmet, they will begin to fester and cause emotional stress.
That fear does not come from the Lord and that they must learn to express their needs more directly. They need to draw closer to the Lord and trust Him so that they do not lose their “gentle” spirit and servant’s heart.
See I Chronicles 16:11: “Seek the Lord and his strength, seek his face continually.”
See also I John 4:18: “There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear: because fear hath torment. He that feareth is not made perfect in love.”
PLEASE NOTE: These are temperament tendencies, and, as always, while you are counseling the Supine in Inclusion you must take into consideration their walk with the Lord, learned behavior, personality and birth order.
Creation Therapy & Mental Health “ And The Church… The Truth”
Pastor Brenda Ward of Cobbs Creek, VA, is a Certified Pastoral Member of the Sarasota Academy of Christian Counseling and has been an International Representative since April 13, 2018. She is also a member of the NCCA.
As an International Representative, I have been able to use Creation Therapy to help individuals discover their inborn part of themselves and reach their God given potential. The remarkable results of using APS and Creation Therapy together has helped individuals determine why they react to situations, things and people the way they do. In addition, it helps them cope with major mental health challenges, stress, unforgiveness, painful situations, and low self-esteem. As a Certified Temperament Counselor, Licensed Pastoral Counselor and a License Qualified Mental Health Professional, introducing Creation Therapy with the assistance of an APS assessment to those with mental health challenges has proven to bring about a remarkable change in their lives. Many have discovered that they don’t have to accept living in Lo Debar, because God has rescued us from the kingdom of darkness. Lo Debar represents a state of mind and/or a physical place where an individual is in constant fear, depression and worrying. They are feeling unloved, forgotten, unsuccessful, unappreciated, lonely, unwanted and trapped with no way out, just to name a few. Lo Debar, in today’s terms, signifies a belief system that is contrary to the Word of God which leads to a state of despair without hope and strongholds.
When individuals discover their God given temperament through Creation Therapy it leads them to the confidence they need to discover and identify the hidden behavioral problems within their lives. Creation Therapy is a great tool in addressing a wide range of clinical and behavioral issues, that are negatively impacting individuals’ daily lives, such as anger, depression, anxiety, PTSD, including dysfunctional and functional issues. As a Christian Counselor I have used, and continue to use, this tool to assist individuals in achieving their short and long-term goals for both spiritual and emotional well-being.
As a Pastor, I strongly recommend that other Pastors introduce Creation Therapy to their church. I witnessed a CEO of a major mental health agency require that their new hires take the APS as part of their hiring package. Clients have voiced that Creation Therapy and APS assessments work when other counseling techniques fail.
As I mentioned earlier Lo Debar is a belief system, and this belief system is no respecter of persons. People of all walks of life have entered into this place of despair: Preachers, Christians, Politicians, and Teachers. This is why I feel so strongly about introducing Creation Therapy to the Body of Christ and the importance of the magnitude of mental illness is staggering as it affects us regardless of age, gender, economic status or ethnicity. Mental illness has not missed the church. The body, regardless of our denomination, is not immune to mental health disorders and illnesses. One in four church members sitting in the church pews, on the usher board, in the Sunday School and children’s church, on the deacon and mothers board, including our leader will face a challenge with mental illness for either themselves or within their family. In contrast, unfortunately, most of our religious communities still to this day remain silent when it comes to the knowledge, wisdom, and understanding of mental disorders as an illness that is treatable beyond that of faith and seclusion. Many in the household of faith continue to struggle and are suffering in silence. We are attempting to carry the fear, the shame, and the rejection while portraying a stigma that we have it all together. We have a perception that disclosing the truth will have a negative impact on our families and our ministries. “Untreated and un-counseled” mental illness has resulted in a decline of church attendance as many are walking away from their callings and purpose ultimately committing suicide and prematurely ending their lives.
As the salt of the Earth and Kingdom representatives, we are to be the ones speaking up in our faith communities regarding mental health concerns. In the darkest hours of our closest loved ones and neighbors our knowledge, support, and advocacy matters. Faith leaders that are open about their own journeys of mental health have made a huge impact with removing the “stigma and isolation” that can hinder mental health awareness, self-growth, and restoration. It is imperative that we impart the understanding that we are not alone and are still worthy of love and non-judgmental support.
Stigma is defined as a mark of disgrace associated with a particular circumstance. Stigma is the extra weight of what others feel, see, or view in me as placed on top of my actual reality. Stigma is powerful and pervasive and is encountered immensely by individuals with mental illness. Stigma is known to contribute to causing disruption in the closest of family relationships. Stigma aides in the lowering of one’s self-esteem and adversely affecting our ability to socialize, grow, and maintain the most basic elements of life.
Many Christians are not encouraged to seek counseling, but instead, they are encouraged to pray harder and “have more faith.” As the Body of Christ, we have much work to do to address the crisis associated with mental illness, and it will not all be done Sunday morning at the altar. Unfortunately, very few ministries incorporate adequate information concerning the ministry of mental health into their core curriculum. Individuals with mental health challenges have shown to prefer to go to their spiritual leader for help, comfort, and support. The clergy has been the least effective in being prepared to provide appropriate support and referral information leaving our sheep to fend for themselves unknowingly. We need to make the shift away from stigmatizing mental health as a moral failing and provide resources that support and sustain those with mental health issues and their families.
Let me be very clear, I do believe in miracles. I do believe in deliverance. I do believe in signs and wonders. I also know that we perish for lack of knowledge and in all things, we are to get understanding. It is not the Father’s will that we suffer. Isaiah 53:5 states that the chastisement of our peace was upon him. We are entitled to mental health, and it is, in fact, a faith move; however, faith without works is dead. We must be prepared to provide tangible support to the Earth realm. We cannot afford to continue to lose lives based on holding on to a perception which is a stigma when God has provided the tools and resources to better ourselves. 3 John 2 says: Dear friend, I pray that you may enjoy good health (physically) and that all may go well with you, even as your soul is getting along well (spiritually) NIV.
Kathleen Willey Peterson is a Certified Pastoral Member of the Sarasota Academy of Christian Counseling, and has been an International Representative since September 5, 2013. She has also been an NCCA Licensed Pastoral Counselor since April, 2016. Kathleen is the Founder and International Director of Aaron & Hur International Ministries.
Strengthening * Equipping * Restoring Creation Therapy and the APS in Ministering to Church leaders and their families
“So Joshua fought the Amalekites as Moses had ordered, and Moses, Aaron and Hur went to the top of the hill. As long as Moses held up his hands, the Israelites were winning, but whenever he lowered his hands, the Amalekites were winning. When Moses’ hands grew tired, they took a stone and put it under him and he sat on it. Aaron and Hur held his hands up—one on one side, one on the other—so that his hands remained steady till sunset.” Exodus 17:10-12
Today the battle continues for the hearts of millions around the world. In the midst of this battle God has called certain men and women to take the lead. As Moses did ages ago, those in leadership grow tired and weak. Not only do pastors, missionaries and ministers grow weary but their spouses and children also pay the price of obedience to The Call of Christ. Who then is being Aaron and Hur to these ministers and their families?
God placed the dream in my heart when I was a young girl to serve those whom God had called into ministry. As the daughter, granddaughter and great-granddaughter of missionaries and pastors and having myself been in full time Christian service for the past 30 years, I know full well the pressure the ministerial family carries. In 1999 I founded, with my husband’s support and encouragement, what is today known as Aaron & Hur International Ministries (AHIM) – a ministry that ministers to the ministerial family. We have worked in various countries, Panama, Costa Rica, Colombia, Spain and Cuba. Today we have staff in the USA, in Cuba and are starting up a team in the Republic of Panama.
The APS has been the main introductory tool that we have used to help pastors, their spouses and their children. My team and I have seen God use it in many ways.
We have seen ministry kids (youth and adults) drop unhealthy walls they have built around their hearts for self-protection as they saw themselves as uniquely created and with their own God given callings.
We have seen pastors who were burned out and whom had forgotten or perhaps never known who they are. They remembered again their “first love” and regain focus.
We have seen pastor’s marriages restored as they began to understand themselves and each other’s wants and very real needs.
We have seen pastors who have had moral failings understand some of the temperament factors that contributed to the moral failings and how to protect themselves in the future.
We have seen pastors establish new boundaries and habits in their lives based on their own and their families temperament needs.
We have seen women in ministry discover for the first time that they were wearing a mask at home and in ministry. They found freedom as they discovered who they really are behind the mask.
This list could go on. God has been faithful to reveal himself and his unique purpose for each of these men, women and children.
In 2016 we presented the first Creation Therapy Class (Terapia Restauradora) in Cuba, in order to expand the use of the APS and better equip the Aaron & Hur Int. Ministries (AHIM) service team. We had 20 students participate in a 5 day introductory class with follow-up independent study of the material. The material was revolutionary for these men and women whom God has called as AHIM counselors or as counselors in their local churches. We are scheduled to give the Creation Therapy class in the Republic of Panama in June of 2017.
Ariel Alfaro, the dean of education of the Cedars of Lebanon Seminary in Pinar del Ríos, Cuba stated the following regarding the effect that Creation Therapy (Terapia Restauradora) has had had on his life. “The Creation Therapy study not only helped me understand myself, my wife and the seminary students with whom I work. It also helped me understand many things that my theological studies did not explain about the human condition and God’s purpose. It gave a deeper and introspective perspective on anthropology. It is deeply based on biblical truths and it has helped me understand the design of God with his people.”
A Personal Note
The core values of my life and of this ministry are Reconciliation, Grace, Obedience and lifelong Discipleship. There is no way to measure the impact that Creation Therapy and the APS has had in leading me and my ministry team to living these core values. It has brought understanding, healing, direction and purpose to my live and to the lives of hundreds of pastors, their spouses and their precious children.
Thank you Drs. Richard and Phyllis Arno and SACC for your diligence and perseverance. God is using you to bring healing to people around the world and to bring glory and honor to His Name!