Sarasota Academy International Representative Spotlight
Dr. Roy H. Cantrell, II (Howie) of Gallatin, TN is a Certified Pastoral Member of the Sarasota Academy of Christian Counseling and has been an International Representative since2015.
Currently, Dr. Cantrell is the Director/President of Gateway Institute, a Certified Academic Institution College of the N.C.C.A. Also, through the N.C.C.A. Dr. Cantrell is a Licensed Clinical Pastoral Counselor-Advanced Certified.
Many years ago, at the early age of 13, I was asked to get involved in counseling. You see my father, Dr. Roy H. Cantrell, I, was a youth camp director in Mississippi and asked me if I would like to be a C.I.T. “Counselor in Training.” My answer was yes! I did not know at the time how this would affect me later in life and in my career as a pastor, counselor, teacher, and trainer; as well as, a mentor.
I learned about the Arno’s program through my father and with much encouragement enrolled through my local church with the Institute of Counselor Development.The reason it took a lot of encouragement was that I was working on a Masters Degree in Theology at the time. It was definitely a challenge!
As I studied counseling and the art of counseling, I became a master illustrator with word pictures. I thought this was something that everyone could do, but soon found out it was a gift. It was later in reading a book by Mark Batterson, titled “The Circle Maker,” that I discovered talking in circles (thought by some to be a bad thing) was actually the way that Jesus taught, and His ability to paint word pictures was my inspiration. Pretty good role model despite popular opinion, don’t you think?
I’ll give one of these illustrations:
I keep a large silver coin in my pocket and when presented for inspection to the person they are instructed that “Heads” is mercy and “Tails” is Justice. I then ask these two questions.
1. If you were standing in front of a judge and were about to be sentenced to 10 years in prison, would you choose Mercy or Justice? They almost always choose Mercy.
2. If you were standing in that same court room watching the person who hurt your family member about to be sentenced to 10 years in prison, would you choose Mercy or Justice? They almost always choose Justice.
I then lay the coin on the table and ask them to pick up Mercy without picking up Justice. They look at me puzzled and usually say, “I can’t.” The explanation then becomes one of God being the only one who truly is the righteous judge.
Romans 9:15 “I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy.”
Exodus 34:7a“Keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and
transgression and sin, and that will by no means clear the guilty;”
This is usually a defining moment for the person with whom the illustration has been shared. Getting a person to think outside of their normal thought process is a key to helping get them unstuck.
Many years ago God blessed me with a definition for counseling. It is simply…
“A conversation with a goal.”
The goal in our conversation must always be to help our clients to get “unstuck.”
In many conversations with my father we have compared notes on subjects of all kinds, but one stands out above all the rest, it is this… neither of us have ever had a client, or clients, that didn’t have a spiritual issue at the root of their problem, or problems.
If we can’t get them to see how critical it is to get unstuck, or more importantly to get free, then as counselors, we have done them a huge dis-service. It is impossible to do either of these two things: (1) Get them unstuck or, (2) Free, without the Holy Spirit’s presence in the counseling office.
I thank God on a regular basis for the vision that He gave the Arno’s to help people through Christian Counseling; in particular Creation Therapy. I don’t know how pastors counsel their members and people in their community with any success without the God given wisdom of this program.
I do however want to say… God is the door opener! It’s our job to walk through.One of the many things that I have had the privilege to do as a counselor is to work with the courts as an instructor in a domestic violence class in the county where I live. I use my training in Temperament Theory/Therapy to explain to the people who are there how to understand themselves, as well as, understand why they are doing what they are doing. I love to watch the light bulbs come on as they, one by one, get it. I wish I could say they all get it, but they don’t.
I do this on a volunteer basis and offer each and every person in the room a free session with me, if they will just call. Some do, some don’t. My thoughts are simple on this matter; if you are going to change the game, you have to “get in the game”!
Along with all the other things we do in our community, my wife of 34 years, Becky Williamson Cantrell, of which I could have never done any of what I have accomplished, and I have gone on to launch City Gate Church in Gallatin, Tennessee. We have also launched Gateway Institute where we currently have 17 students in our Counseling and Theology programs in three different states. By the way, we could not have launched Gateway Institute so successfully without the help of April Mooneyhan and Kathy Verblaauw.
I have decided to be a life long learner and by the help and grace of God, along with the help of the Arno’s and Baran’s, I will be a game changer to all God puts in my path.
Sarasota Academy International Representative Spotlight
Cindi Estep of Shreveport, LA, is a Certified Member of the Sarasota Academy of Christian Counseling and has been an International Representative since August 22, 2017. She is also a member of the NCCA.
Teaching identity is one of my greatest passions in life! Until we fully understand who we are in Christ and the inheritance we’ve been given in Him, it’s very difficult to live a life of freedom and joy. If we don’t have a good mental picture of where we are going, staying on the course is nearly impossible! I believe the same can be said of not understanding your God-given design, which we now know to be the inborn temperament.
Working with people through freedom ministry, coaching, and counseling, I’m continually amazed when I learn the temperaments of those I work with. What keeps me in awe is how it often seems that God gave just the right temperament blends to His children. Once a foundation of understanding of temperament is laid, those people also begin to see the unbelievable care and precision Father God took in designing each one with the exact measure of what they’d need to be overcomers in this life! He made no accidents, and there are no “bad” temperament blends.
Becoming an International Representative has been thrilling for me! Once I learned enough to feel confident in communicating temperament, I decided to teach classes of no more than ten people at a time in my home to my church community and fellow ministry workers. I am now teaching my second Created in God’s Image class and absolutely loving it! I’ve been able to share temperament theory, as well as teach specifics of the Arno Profiling System to people both locally and distant through online video. Soon, I’ll step out and do some coaching with temperament as a basis. I chose the word “coach,” because some people don’t think they need a “counselor” or “therapist.” However, who couldn’t use a “Coach” from time to time in life? I want people to know I’m in their corner cheering them on and helping with strategy for the wins in life.
I believe this information is so valuable to everyone. I continue to receive feedback that testifies of the power that understanding temperament holds to transform relationships, communication patterns, and how we interact and perceive other individuals. It’s beneficial to every arena in life. I’ve been able to use it to encourage frustrated parents, give understanding to misunderstood teens,and energize unfulfilled adults. I’ve seen husbands and wives see each other through new lenses now understanding and appreciating differences that were once unbelievably frustrating.
Seeing such tremendous growth and unveiling of hearts in those I’ve shared it with has given me the courage and desire to continue pouring this much-needed knowledge into the body of Christ (along with anyone else who’s interested). It’s now my ongoing mission to train and teach people about temperament, and I’ve started with those who serve alongside me in ministry. My desire is to share enough knowledge with the church that we can all begin to see people with eyes that see past surface. It’s my desire that those who continually feel (and may have even been told) that something is “wrong” with or defective about how they process things will once and for all understand WHY they are wired the way that they are and begin to appreciate and accept those God-given qualities.
Only when there’s understanding of identity can a person fully become all that Christ has designed and called them to be. Each has strengths. Each has worth. Each has specific needs. Each has a place in the body of believers. We are all made to be in community with each other and none are meant to live isolated or misunderstood. With temperament knowledge, we can all learn to celebrate each other’s differences and see past words right into hearts, understanding the needs. We begin to truly see through lenses of grace.
What freedom can come sometimes simply by a person feeling understood… some maybe for the first time in their life! It’s a feeling like no other when one no longer feels the need to make excuses or cover for a need being met. It offers hope to the one who’s been mentally and emotionally drained, because they’ve had no understanding of how much and what kind of rest they need to make room for in life. It gives people permission to be who they are and not feel ashamed because it’s different from someone else. Insight into temperament also helps us navigate our weaknesses and take time in making decisions or wrong moves that we might later regret.
What an adventure it’s been thus far! I look forward to the next phase I’ll begin soon teaching Creation Therapy to those on my ministry team and those wanting to go deeper. Through some amazing Kingdom partnerships and other local ministry leaders, I hope to get this valuable knowledge and resource into the hands of all those doing Kingdom work. What an exciting day it will be when through ministries we see identities being restored one APS at a time!
Sarasota Academy International Representative Spotlight
Dr. John Pelizzari of Belton, Texas, is a Certified Pastoral Member of Sarasota Academy and an International Representative. He has been an International Representative since March 6, 2002.
I believe that you are reading this because you have a heart for people, and as we all know, people come with problems…lots of them. Our passion in healing the brokenhearted, restoring those in need of deliverance from themselves and their past; to free those who are captives in their minds and in their hearts and to guide those that have been bruised in life, is the foundation, in my opinion, of what Creation Therapy is all about.
I have been involved with this dynamic method for over 15 years. When counseling couples, by utilizing the counselor’s suggestions on their profiles, many marriages have been radically changed for the better. Directing the couple to begin looking for ways to ‘out give’ or bless one another on a continual, daily basis helps in meeting their spouse’s temperament needs. As their outlook changes, their lives change. Intimacy returns and marriages grow stronger.
Using the principles of Creation Therapy and the APS reports is just as effective when counseling families as well. Addressing the differences in their temperament diffuses the strife and the conflicts within that family and healthy changes occur. Time and time again families received healing and restoration.
Whether we are teaching the Creation Therapy class or counseling individuals, we have found that a domino effect takes place; especially when using the APS reports. First, we see that our students/clients are coming to a place of self-acceptance when their temperament is explained. Second, as we encourage them to seek ways to meet their temperament needs, a healthier perspective on life develops and an inner freedom becomes more evident. They find themselves being able to live and work with those around them becoming easier.
We have used this on a larger scale in our prison ministry. We have identified that the majority of inmates are incarcerated due to unmet needs which led to criminal behaviors. In addition, we are in the process of teaching Creation Therapy at our prison missionary training facility in New Mexico as part of the curriculum.
Understanding the differences in temperaments, incorporating the APS profile along with prayer brings a standard of excellence to ones calling to help a hurting humanity. In our church and ministries, as an IR, we make Creation Therapy available and the responses are always positive. Some have even taken the course more than once. Our students report that it is both informational and therapeutic to themselves as well.
‘For as he thinketh in his heart, so is he” Proverbs 23:7 KJV
SARASOTA ACADEMY INTERNATIONAL REPRESENTATIVE SPOTLIGHT
Ginger McBride of Grand Cane, LA is a Certified Pastoral Member of the Sarasota Academy of Christian Counseling and has been an International Representative since January, 2018. Ginger is also a Licensed Pastoral Counselor through the N.C.C.A.
Currently she is teaching Created In God’s Image and has five (5) students. She plans to teach Creation Therapy to those students soon.
Claiming God’s Promises by Ginger McBride….
It was February 20, 2018. Twenty days into this precious project and God has accomplished so much. I called Debbie around 7pm for an update. She and her family: her husband, children, brothers, and others, were working into the night by the lights of tractors, getting gutters on the house before another rain. She had to let me go. They were at a tedious point.
That’s the way it has been every day since she signed a lease with Heritage Bank on a repossessed home with 3 bedrooms and 2 ½ baths. She told the banker her story. God told her that prison ministry for one hour a week was not enough. God wanted her to open a half-way house for women coming out of the prison system, women He treasured. The banker believed her story and also believed if God told her, it would happen. By the way, the first three months of the lease were free.
This is a story of what happens in the natural while God works in the supernatural. It’s a story about what God does with prayer, fasting, obedience, and claiming His promises. When we take small steps to make these things priorities in our lives, life is not hard – it’s fun. The Bible is full of promises that assure us of an abundant, adventurous life, we just have to have the faith of a “mustard seed” to take those small steps. Our Creator knows what stretches us and builds our faith. He will put one test at a time in front of us. If we cannot pass the test (or refuse to take it), He will send us back to our lessons until He tests us again.
Debbie McClure and I have learned to take the test the first (or second) time. Debbie and I met on a mission trip to Peru. Then, God put us together on a mission trip to Haiti. We were part of a construction team after the earthquake in 2010. Being the only women, we had time to share our hearts for missions with each other. We both felt the Lord leading us to be a part of ministry where no one else was working. We talked about starting a non-profit, but God had to be in the middle of it. We knew we had to start with prayer.
My friend, Sandy Burford had given me a book on fasting a few years ago. If ever we needed to know God’s will, it was now. We fasted and prayed the first 21 days of 2011. We began to see God work. Dusty Feet Missionaries became our first non-profit. It reaches so many needy families. We work with missions’ organizations, but we search to find areas outside the scope of their ministries where we can help at home and around the world. God has taken us on some exciting adventures. We have been His voice, as His love through Jesus Christ has been proclaimed. We have been His hands and feet for those who needed to feel His compassion.
Participation in jail ministry came about as we usually get involved in ministry. My daughter-in-law mentioned that she thought I should join the work of Purchased: Not for Sale, a ministry to prostitutes in the Shreveport/Bossier area of Louisiana. They were having orientation classes on Monday nights in July. Sandy and I went to see what they were all about. After the first class, I called Debbie and asked her to come check this program out. Even though she lives 3 hours away, she made the Monday night classes, including the make-up class.
After the classes, we were given the opportunity to sign up for the different areas of ministry, including visiting women in jail. While I was making my way to talk to the director and tell her that I would be praying for her ministry but I didn’t think I was called to this particular ministry, Debbie was signing us up. I wasn’t so sure about all of this, but I didn’t take my name off the list.
Debbie would drive up every Tuesday. We would meet the volunteers for prayer before visiting inmates. Some volunteers came to see one girl. We would see as many as we could during the Tuesday visitation time. One of the guards asked us if we would like to participate in Tuesday night church services. We set up that orientation and soon we were visiting in the afternoons and going into the women’s cell block in the evenings.
Since there were already women ministers for this cell block, we asked if we could go into Female Mental Health where no one was holding church services. The chaplain asked us if we had counseling experience. We told him no, so he sent us right on in to Female Mental Health. Later he recommended to us, Temperament Counseling through Sarasota Academy and the National Christian Counselors Association.
Debbie and Sandy volunteered me to take the first class. The Created in God’s Image class met on the same night as jail ministry and we weren’t ready to give that up completely. Just as the Purchased orientation, I wanted them to experience these Temperament classes for themselves, so we all started taking one class at a time, through Creation Therapy, Life Coaching, Phase I and Phase II until we were certified.
Somewhere in the middle of all these classes, Debbie began jail ministry a little closer to her home with her nieces, Sherry Patten and Jill Thompson. That’s when the Lord spoke to her and told her one hour was not enough. At first Debbie resisted, but God insisted. She filled out the paperwork for another 501(c)3. We decided Almost Home Behavioral Health Ministries, was a good name for a “more-than-half-way” house.
For the first 21 days in January 2018 we fasted and prayed for Almost Home. We knew only Jesus Christ could make a difference in the lives of the broken. We prayed for the girls. We prayed for God’s will and God’s way. We prayed for the paperwork. We prayed for a place.
The first weekend of January, Debbie and I had the opportunity to be Prayer Boot Camp facilitators, a prayer Bible study from the movie, War Room. Claude King from Lifeway Christian Stores in Nashville, Tennessee, was leading the study at First Baptist Church, Bushnell, Florida. Even though we try to limit our trips during our fasting, it doesn’t always work out. Our prayer time is sometimes in solitude; and sometimes while we are on the go. This year, we would go to Florida for the weekend and start Created in God’s Image classes on Monday night. Our typical prayer and fasting times happen more like Brother Lawrence’s: He prayed while he was “rattling his pots and pans.” We decided this prayer retreat would be good for us and good for the ministry. Rev. Claude King allowed us to share about Almost Home that weekend, then he prayed for us and the ministry. The whole church was excited about what God was leading us to do. Many came offering us words of encouragement.
On January 22-23, Louisiana Southern Baptists held their Evangelism Conference. That’s a meeting that I always enjoy, if I’m in the state. Monday night was class night, but I could be there for the Tuesday sessions. Sandy and I attended our first breakout session on prayer with Dr. Greg Frizzell. He shared on Biblical principles of prayer and his testimony of how God turned a church back to Himself, when the congregation humbled themselves in prayer.
Our next session was with Karen Abercrombe who played “Miss Clara” in the movie, War Room. She shared about Rahab the prostitute and how God used her to be part of the lineage of Jesus. After her talk, Sandy and I went up to introduce ourselves and tell her about our ministry to prostitutes and women in jail due to addictions and bad behavior. She too, was excited and prayed for us and the ministry. So much has been about War Room. I’m pretty sure we will be meeting the Kendrick brothers before the year is over. They will want to pray for us as well. Our state Women’s Ministry Director, Janie Wise, overheard our conversation with Karen. She wanted to know about the ministry and do what she could to help us.
God continues to put people who can pray for us in our path. We met Dr. Brook Bello at the NCCA Conference October 2017. Debbie and Brook have kept up with each other through texts and Facebook. Brook called Monday, February 5, for a prayer time. She had specific prayer requests for her ministry, and we had specific prayer requests for ours. We agreed with each other in prayer. It was a sweet, sweet time.
Pastors and lay leaders from denominational and nondenominational churches have prayed in the house, for the ministry and for the women who will be living there. They have promised to go back to their churches and ask for financial support. We need the financial support, but more importantly, we need their prayers. Others came on weekends to bring donations and work on pending projects. God supplies our needs through money, volunteers, donations of goods and services, causing things to happen and preventing bad things from happening. We accept them all as gifts from Jehovah Jireh.
As I said before, we signed the lease February 1, and the actual work on the house began. Debbie’s daughter-in-law, Angie Wilson, stepped in to help. Angie has been at the house early in the morning until late afternoon, when she goes home to take care of her own household. She sticks by Debbie as Ruth did Naomi. Angie helped paint the Leslie Wilson Room in memory of Debbie’s daughter, and then she has painted all the other rooms that had not been painted. Debbie and Angie are a painting machine. Debbie cleans and primes; Angie paints, and when a Melancholy paints, it’s perfect.
As people sponsor rooms in memory of loved ones, their healing process continues. This community is broken because of pre-mature deaths of too many young adults. Some suffered addictions and overcame them; some were overcome by them. As family members and friends sponsor rooms for their loved ones, and as they see the lives of these broken women healed of their addictions and destructive lifestyles, they will know, beyond a shadow of a doubt, God is in heaven and He cares for each one of us, most especially those who the devil is so dead set on destroying.
Please pray for us. Pray that God will anoint us with every ministry gift. Pray that God will give us strength for body, soul, and spirit to reclaim and restore lives the devil has stolen for himself. He cannot have them. Pray that God will continue to send willing workers. Pray for longevity of the ministry that will stop recidivism in our prison system.
Pray that the women we touch with our words and deeds will come to have a true relationship with the Lord Jesus Christ. Pray that their lives will be restored. Pray that they will see themselves as God’s treasures. Pray that they will understand God’s unique plan for them and be able to implement it. Pray for programs and curricula that will teach in a way that is easy to learn and apply.
Pray that we would always humble ourselves before Almighty God, and give Him glory, honor, and praise for allowing us to be a small part of His mighty work.
“And my God will supply all your needs according to His riches in glory in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:19
“Everyone whose heart stirred him and everyone whose spirit moved him came and brought the Lord’s contribution for the work of the tent meeting and for all its service and for the holy garments.” Exodus 35:21
“Then I will rebuke the devourer for you so that it will not destroy the fruits of your ground; nor will your vine in the field cast its grapes,” says the Lord of hosts. Malachi 3:11
“The thief comes to steal, kill, and destroy; I came that they may have life, and have it more abundantly.” John 10:10
“This is the day which the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it.” Psalm 118:24
Pray that we will be bold to claim and implement all of God’s precious promises for His priceless treasures.
SARASOTA ACADEMY INTERNATIONAL REPRESENTATIVE SPOTLIGHT
How Temperament Analysis Helps Us Equip Clients for Spiritual Warfare
Paul tells us in Ephesians that our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against spiritual forces of evil. He is talking about demons in our earthly realm as well as those in the second heaven.
Can the Arno Profile System, which pinpoints a person’s inborn temperament with associated strengths and weaknesses, help a Christian counselor equip clients more fully for personal spiritual warfare?
The answer is “Yes!” and I want to share how we do this.
Above & Beyond Christian Counseling engages in traditional individual, couples and family counseling and we employ conventional counseling tools and approaches.
However, over half of our clients find us because of our focus on deliverance ministry, setting the captives free from demonic strongholds that most standard counseling techniques do not address. This service is hard to find in the Body of Christ; more than half of those we help are located in other states and countries around the world.
Praise the Lord for excellent web conferencing technology!
For those clients who complete the five-step process, we strongly encourage them to continue and learn about their unique, God-given temperament. We explain how it helps prepare them for the unclean spirits return to the house (Matt 12:43-45).
The battlefield is the mind, and our counselors adapt the findings in each profile to equip them to discern and resist the devils.
We begin by emphasizing that when the spirits return they will:• Put thoughts in their mind• Stir up past memories in their soul memory• Work through others (actions and words) to initiate thoughts and memories• Instigate life situations to get us to revert to the old stinking thinking.
The battlefield is the mind, as we are well aware. Taking thoughts captive quickly and discerning the (likely) spirit behind it is crucial to successful warfare.
There are not demons behind every problem, and we are careful to clarify that with our clients. Each person has a free will and must take responsibility for their actions and behaviors. While we see deliverance ministry as a powerful tool in our arsenal, we are adamant that it is not a quick fix nor “magic bullet.”
Each person has a responsibility to walk deliverance out and act upon biblical counsel as they move forward in their walk with the Lord.
We emphasize the importance of gaining control of one’s thought life and how thoughts can originate from a variety of sources, including demon spirits. Paul urges us to remember that our struggle is against powers of darkness so we must know their tactics. They are fine-tuned depending upon their target’s temperament.
When we understand a client’s background and presenting issues, we can coach them to prepare for a specific scenario they are likely to encounter when the spirits return. The process (not the recipe) generally goes as follows. They are to:
• Capture the thought/memory
• Identify the emotion that the thought generates
• Discern the likely spirit that is tormenting
• Command it to leave, and
• Speak the Rhema word over the situation to build up their faith
Sample Warfare Tactics by Temperament Type
Here are some examples for each temperament:
They have active minds that do not shut off, and there is a tendency to relive the past. If the memory of an abusive parent’s actions keeps coming back, we encourage the Melancholy to analyze the thought, discern the emotion it is stirring (say, rejection) and respond out loud in a manner as follows:
“I have forgiven and released judgments against my father/mother. You spirit of rejection you get out of here and leave me alone, in Jesus’ name. I am a daughter/son of the King, and You will never leave me nor forsake me”.
Guilt over past failures and sins is often an issue for Supines. Demons are masters at stirring up past memories so the client must be ready to deal with this everyday tactic. We encourage the supine to declare something like this:
“Yes, I did that, but my Father has forgiven me, cleansed me of my sins and remembers them no more. You spirit of guilt and shame, you get out of here and leave me alone in Jesus name. There is no condemnation for those found in Christ, and I am found in Him.”
If a lover has rejected them and they have sought comfort in the wrong places, they will be tempted to seek out that love again. We encourage the Sanguine to adopt this type of approach:
“Yes, Joe did abandon and reject me, but I have forgiven him and released all judgments. I am a daughter of the King, and He has a godly husband for me. You spirit of self-pity (or whatever else they discern), you get out of here and leave me alone in Jesus name. Thank you, Father, that you will meet all of my needs out of your glorious riches. You will be my husband, Jesus until the chosen one comes into my life.”
Cholerics have little grace for dealing with the emotions or weaknesses of others. They can learn how to move in that area (“fake it until you make it”) but it begins with consciously discerning the tendency to dismiss or move on when the situation arises. We encourage the Choleric to declare:
“Lord help me to see Hank as you do. Thank you that I have your heart for him Lord and I will respond to Him as you would. You spirit of impatience, you get out of here and leave me alone. Thank you, Lord, that you have taken out my heart of stone and given me a heart of flesh.”
Stubbornness and passiveness associated with Phlegmatics make them ideal targets if a spirit of stubbornness seeks to return to the house. They are actively motivated to cope and do as little as possible. When they discern that, we suggest the Phlegmatic to counter as follows:
“Thank you, Lord, for setting me free. I am yielded to the Lordship of Jesus in my life, and I recognize that I am under the authority in this office. Mary is my supervisor, and I purpose to clean up my office (or whatever) as she has asked me to do. You spirit of stubbornness, you get out of here and leave me alone in Jesus name. Lord, I obey this directive as unto You.”
Once again, these represent small samples of the process we employ. They are not formulas to follow blindly. We can tailor specific counsel to the client because we know their life history and the demonic strongholds that have been tormenting them.
I hope you have found this article helpful. I will be blessed if you are motivated to learn more about how to include spiritual warfare in your therapy. Deliverance can help set the captives free, but they need help in this area in addition to counseling. We have seen that the saints heal and mature more quickly when they are equipped to discern and resist the demonic realm.
SARASOTA ACADEMY INTERNATIONAL REPRESENTATIVE SPOTLIGHT
Yenny Vargas Plata of Pinellas Park, FL is a Certified Member of Sarasota Academy and has been an International Representative since September 27, 2012.
We are ending another year—a time to share, eat, meditate, enjoy with our loved ones and thank God for all the blessings received, for what we did and for what we could not complete. I personally thank God for a wonderful year filled with spiritual success, and fulfillment of personal and professional goals. None of this would have been possible without the CreationTherapy tool. Five years ago, my life began to take a turn for healing and restoration, after coming from a dysfunctional home with many empty, emotional wounds and unanswered questions.
Years later I met Jesus and in spite of my tireless search for answers, nothing seemed to work, my voids were not so deep anymore, but they continued. It was when I first learned to know myself and to understand God’s design in my life through Temperament. That’s when I began to see a real meaning to my life, my wounds were healed and my questions that troubled me for so many years were answered. I am the product of transformative change and I have achieved the knowledge to understand and maintain a balance between my spirit, soul and body.
Today I am not only a product of transformative change; I am an agent of change. As an International Representative for Sarasota Academy and Director of Redoma Christian College, I have had the opportunity to process almost 1,200 A.P.S. I have been blessed to see countless lives changed (the vast majority of them believers), both in counseling and with our students, who have been impacted by the transforming and restorative power gained through this wonderful knowledge of Temperament. I feel very blessed to be part of the great army of Christian counselors that make National Christian Counselors Association. I pray to God to allow me to continue to be an agent of change in the divine legacy given to us by the Drs. Richard G. Arno and Phyllis J. Arno, and so, this great army will continue to grow in numbers, blessed and strengthened, to continue impacting our society that needs it so much.
Proverbs 11:14 New International Version (NIV) tells us: “For lack of guidance a nation falls, but victory is won through many advisers.”
Dr. David Ralston of Conroe, TX is a Certified Pastoral Member of the Sarasota Academy of Christian Counseling and has been an International Representative since 2011. Currently, Dr. Ralston is an Associate Pastor of Counseling and Recovery at The Ark Church, Conroe, TX. Dr. Ralston is also an NCCA Licensed Clinical Pastoral Counselor-Advanced Certified.
A HUGE MOVE
God has a way of taking us in directions where only He can see how it will turn out, and how much it will bless us. When my wife Ann and I took the step in 2007 to move toward my becoming a Christian Counselor and hopefully moving into full-time ministry, we had no idea what that might look like. All we knew was that we were supposed to take the step.
Psalm 119:105 reads, “Your word is a lamp to guide my feet and a light for my path.” A lamp only illuminates the path in front of my feet far enough to see the next step. And that’s exactly what God has done in our lives; only provided enough light to see the next decision He wanted us to make.
Like many of you, I journeyed my way through the NCCA training and credentialing program: Certified Temperament Counselor. Licensed Clinical Christian Counselor. SACC International Representative. And last fall, after nearly ten years since beginning the journey, completed my PhD degree in Clinical Christian Counseling from Colorado Theological Seminary.
During those years, Ann and I grew into our own 501(c)(3), Life Training Christian Counseling, in Owensboro, Kentucky. We witnessed how God multiplied this ministry from meeting with a couple in our living room, to several years later seeing clients every day in a professional suite near the city center. During these years of growth, we had prayed continually that He would continue to widen our territory, and also that He might bless our faithfulness with a more stable income and lifestyle than this small counseling practice could provide.
In March of this year, after nearly four months of interviewing, we were called to a full-time church staff position in southeast Texas. I was called to become the Associate Pastor for Counseling and Recovery at The Ark Church in Conroe, Texas (www.thearkchurch.com). And Ann was called to a part-time position in the same department, as well 🙂
Prior to our joining the team at The Ark, there were three parallel ministries – Biblical Guidance (lay-counseling), Marriage Mentoring, and Recovery Groups – each under the oversight of a different staff member. My newly created position was to bring all three of these together into one multi-disciplinary restoration ministry under my leadership and shepherding.
Turning the clock back a few years… God had given me a ‘vision’ one night while I was sleeping. I put vision in quotes, because I’m not really sure what a vision even is. I just know that I awoke one night about five years ago with a very clear picture of a broad-based counseling and recovery ministry, and God had even given me the name of the program as well as many of the details of what it would look like. The only problems were, at that time I was not on staff in a church nor looking to begin a counseling and recovery ministry. So a few years later, when The Ark asked my vision for the newly created ministry here in Texas, I really only had to unfold what God had already given me.
The picture God had placed in my heart was for a ministry program called TURN. This would be an acrostic for the four phases of restoration from brokenness or shame:
Turning from toxic people, places, and things (Behavior phase) Uncovering the lies and false beliefs (Shame phase) Rediscovering who I am in Christ (Identity phase) Nurturing hope in others (Service phase)
We will be launching the TURN program here at The Ark this fall with nearly fifty trained volunteers on our team. The team is made up of lay counselors, couples lay counselors, recovery group leaders, and mental health consultants. All fifty of these folks just completed the “Created In God’s Image” course (Click here for more information) under my teaching. And two women in the class have heard God calling them to move ahead with taking “Creation Therapy,” and becoming credentialed by the NCCA.
The weekly Tuesday night TURN program will consist of an hour-long large group teaching/testimony time, followed by multiple breakout opportunities. In the sixty-minute breakouts, participants will be provided the options of attending a topic-specific breakout group (i.e. codependency, sexual purity, chemical dependency), or an individual or couples lay counseling appointment.
Also, we will be offering a class each semester (a different day during the week) through the church’s Adult Ministry, intended to supplement the principles taught in the TURN program. One class will focus on healing the shame in a person’s life, addressing the “U” phase of TURN. At this point, the class will be a study of the book, “The Search for Significance” by Robert McGee. The other primary class – “Created in God’s Image” – will help the participant discover their unique identity in Christ, the “R” phase of TURN, through coming to understand their God-given temperament.
We will be using temperament as a general backdrop for every area of the TURN program. When I am teaching in the large group setting, I intend to incorporate references to the temperaments into each week’s lesson in some way. The small group leaders will allude to temperament in terms of why our needs may be unmet, or being met in ungodly, unhealthy ways. And in our lay counseling ministry, clients will be made aware of the strengths, weaknesses, and needs of their unique temperament combinations as the lay counselor leads them toward biblical solutions to the struggles in their lives and relationships. We will be offering the book, “The Missing Link”, by Drs. Arno, to any of our lay counseling clients or group participants who would like to learn more about temperament. And, as mentioned before, we will be offering the “Created In God’s Image” class at least once or twice during the year. Participants who either desire to learn more about their temperament, or who are needing deeper counseling work, will be referred to me, who at this point is the only NCCA licensed counselor on our team. It is my prayer that God will raise up an entire team of NCCA certified and licensed counselors to accommodate what I feel certain will be a growing demand in the months to come.
In the few months since Ann and I have come to The Ark, we have begun to sense a growing interest and momentum toward the APS temperament profile, and how it can benefit a person’s individual journey, as well as their relationships. With the clients who Ann and I see in our office, the APS is used with each and every client.
There is becoming a great deal of hallway conversation throughout the church about how knowing your God-given temperament can change how you see yourself, or how you can understand your spouse, or why your parents may have been the way they were or done the things they did.
I look forward to seeing what God will do in this wonderful church community, not to mention what He might be up to in this rapidly growing city. It is so exciting to be on the leading edge of introducing the APS temperament model into a culture for the very first time.
Rev. Dr. Pearl Addo-Teye is a Certified Member of the Sarasota Academy of Christian Counseling (S.A.C.C.) and has been an International Representative (IR) since January 15, 2015. She is also a Licensed Clinical Pastoral Counselor-Advanced Certified with the National Christian Counselors Association (N.C.C.A.) since June, 2014.
Rev. Dr. Pearl Addo-Teye shares: “My life has been changed tremendously by the study and the use of Creation Therapy/temperament. It has helped me to be a better person and counselor. Using the Creation Therapy knowledge, the temperament tool and with the help of the Holy Spirit in my counseling, has helped my clients, and I have seen God transforming, situations and lives that only He can do. My clients are wowed by how I am able to tell them about their Strengths, Weaknesses and their Needs.” Some of them tell me: “Dr. Pearl, you are talking like you live in my house.” My response to them is: “God knows you, and has given us the Creation Therapy/ temperament tool to help us help you to know who you are, to help you be yourself, to become whole and healthy from within.”
I am very passionate about Creation Therapy/temperament, I am convinced that every person, as soon as they reach the age of accountability, should be taught Creation Therapy/temperament. Why? Because whatever we do in this life, ministry, calling, career etc., is with people, for people, through people and by people. We will continue and always interact with people until we take our last breath. That said, beside God, people are the next most important element in our life and we need to learn how to live with ourselves, the people in our life and those who will come into our life on any level. Creation Therapy/temperament is the only training, knowledge and tool that helps you to be able to relate with God and people effectively, peacefully and fruitfully.
Having this passion and conviction about Creation Therapy/temperament, I started a non-profit organization called Mind Renewal International (M.R.I) with the goal of raising funds to subsidize the training of the Creation Therapy Course in particular and the N.C.C.A counseling Training in general in the USA and Africa. The second goal of M.R.I is to partner with other institutions, colleges, Bible schools and organizations to incorporate the Creation Therapy course in their curriculum and to promote the Creation Therapy course in as many African Countries as possible.
Since 2015, MRI has taken 3 students in the USA and 11 students in Ghana West Africa through the Creation Therapy course. The 11 students from Ghana are made up of four different Churches. These Churches have contacted M.R.I at the African office and want to partner with us to make the Creation Therapy course part of their leadership training and bible school. All I said was “Glory to God for his faithfulness.” All we have to do is to obey the call of God for what He has placed on our heart and He will make a way to fulfill it.
On March 15th, I flew to Ghana, West Africa to have an official Graduation Ceremony for the 11 students graduating from the Creation Therapy course. A week before the graduation, I had a seminar with the 11 graduating students. Beside the other seminar topics the main topic was for the students to give their testimonies about the Creation Therapy course and to invite as many people as possible to the graduation ceremony; this was to serve as a way to advertise the course to others. I missed the greatest opportunity to record the testimonies of these students on how the Creation Therapy course has change their lives. The 11 students were made up of 2 reverend ministers, 1 medical doctor, 1 university lecturer and 7 Church elders. All these students had powerful testimonies, but the common theme that I noticed about what all of them had to say was how their lives have been changed, and how they are using the experience to help others, and the need for every Pastor or Church leader to take the Creation Therapy course.
I want to paraphrase the testimony of the Medical Doctor and the university lecturer. According to the Medical doctor, Creation Therapy has helped him to understand his patients better. He said he realized that not all patients need medication, some of them just need a listening ear and a caring heart, but he never thought about that until he took the Creation Therapy course. He also said, he takes the time to listen to his patients, and by doing that, he gets the opportunity to tell them the truth of the Word of God and the need for them to forgive, get rid of bitterness and trust in God. He said he also has more patience for his patients and approaches them in the way that they will open up to him. He has signed up to take the course to the PhD level.
The university lecturer was the first person to sign up to continue to the PhD level. He said as a lecturer, he no longer has the mindset of putting all his student in the same category and treating them the same, he realized that his students are unique. He now makes extra time for the students who are not so quick to understand what he is teaching. He also shared that he is on the board of an entertainment company and handles the interview process for hiring. He said using the knowledge of the Creation Therapy/temperament, has given him the opportunity to advise the owner of the company to put employees in areas that they will perform better. He said before taken the Creation Therapy/temperament course, he never paid attention to how a person’s temperament needs to be considered in the hiring process.
On Saturday March 25th 2017, we had about 120 people attend the Graduation Ceremony with 9 pastors in attendance. Since the graduation, a medical college, Churches and organizations have reached out to partner with M.R.I. I will be traveling back to Ghana to meet with our partners, draft contracts and begin mass advertising for the Creation Therapy course. I am trusting God for the wisdom to be able to know how to handle the partnership and to take the Creation Therapy/temperament as far as He wants to take it through M.R.I. I know His hand is on this ministry, and He will provide the resources that are needed. I am trusting Him to increase the effectiveness of the organization to reach as many people as possible with the Creation Therapy course.
I want to take this opportunity to thank God for the life of Dr. Richard and Phyllis Arno for their obedience to the Lord and their hard work to bringing this great tool to Gods people. I also want to thank all the amazing staff at Sarasota Academy. They are very helpful and knowledgeable with all my International Representative needs for the Creation Therapy course. God bless you all and I appreciate your hard work and dedication.
Finally, to my fellow IR’s, remember God never promised that what we do will be easy, because Creation Therapy is a powerful tool and we have this awesome opportunity to use this tool to liberate humanity, the enemy of our soul will fight us. God has promised He will be with us every step of the way and will bring us to an expected end and the victory is ours if we do not quit. Be strong in the power of the Lord for it will not be by your power or might, but by the Spirit of the Lord; and faithful is He who has promised and He will do. I believe we all know our God, right? He said we will be strong and do our labor in Him, it is never in vain.
May you all stay blessed and keep up the good work!
Dr. Michael Lea of Prince Frederick, Maryland is a Certified Pastoral Member of the Sarasota Academy of Christian Counseling and has been an International Representative since October 21, 1998.
Dr. Lea is the Congregational Care Pastor for Chesapeake Church in Huntingtown, Maryland. He holds a Master Degree in Counseling Psychology, a PhD in Christian Counseling, and a PhD in Christian Psychology. He enjoys studying new things, home improvement, and spending time with family.
Dr. Lea has a passion for those he serves and with whom he serves. He is the author of Counseling Youth (NCCA), So You Think You Are Married …Ten Tips on How to Live like It (Westbow Press), and First Steps (CCTA).
The story of how I first became aware of temperament and of the Sarasota Academy of Christian Counseling (SACC) constantly reminds me of God’s intervention in our lives beyond my human reasoning.
I was attending a secular graduate school and pursuing my Master Degree in Counseling Psychology. The challenges were many with running a business, maintaining a healthy family life, volunteering as a youth pastor, and attending night school. In addition to those regular challenges I was frequently vilified for my Christian faith when instructors would refer to me as a barbarian for believing such a thing. In God’s wonderful way he used the instructor’s behavior to produce a great byproduct. The byproduct of the instructor’s behavior was that my classmates had no problem knowing where I stood on Christ as my Savior.
One evening one of my classmates came to me with a sheet of paper that had been posted somewhere on campus. He told me the sheet was not of interest to him but he thought it may be to me. The flyer was an invitation to examine this thing call temperament.
As with many of us, after being exposed, I was on my way. I finished my graduate degree in 1996 and started to study Creation Therapy. I had gone to graduate school to be better equipped to serve my youth and their families. I had not realized yet the value of the tool named Temperament Analysis Profile, now known as the Arno Profile System (APS). I had already realized the shallow nature of how the world treats the struggles in life.
After becoming an International Representative (IR) with SACC I was able to purchase and teach Creation Therapy and offer Created in God’s Image.
Ephesians 4:11 teaches us that as leaders we are to equip the people for works of service. As an IR I have the opportunity to use one of my spiritual gifts, the gift of teaching, in equipping the workers. In my capacity as an IR I have taught thousands of people how to grow and serve the Lord through gaining an understanding of their God breathed temperament.
Since becoming an IR I have been associated with thousands of generated profiles. Using the profile to reveal the truth of God’s work gradually became a mainstay in my ministry using it with individuals, ministry team analysis, and the couples’ mentoring. If the focus is equipping one worker for service, even if just one, to be a more productive servant for God it is a ministry success. The use of the APS has produced many successes.
The use of the Arno Profile System is integral for my church’s care ministry to care for a body of around two thousand attendees.
Using the profile is just one of three ways that my being an IR has helped in advancing God’s kingdom. There is a course available through the SACC entitled Created in God’s Image. It is the non-professional version of the material presented in Creation Therapy. (Creation Therapy is available for IRs to train people in administering the APS.) Even though I enjoy teaching Creation Therapy this course provides the most fun and is to me more rewarding.
If you are wondering about becoming an IR teaching this course alone can sway you toward yes.
The population you reach is yearning to hear about themselves and learn about others. My own excitement gets elevated as I see someone understand the “why” answers they have been searching a lifetime to answer. Even though the course is designed to be a self-study course I provide it in a class setting over a six-week period. The class is designed to be informative and fun. Each time I offer this class it ignites a desire in others who then request the class be offered again. As an IR one can supplement their income by providing such a class in a professional setting, or to help strengthen the ministry workers in one’s local church.
A true testimony of how powerful this course can be is that many people take the class two or three times. As an IR I have been privileged to teach hundreds in my church community with prospects of many more. The more people learn about their temperament the more many of them want to know.
Being an IR continually provides opportunity for me to be involved in my church community. Even as I write this release I am reminded of my temperament. To think of the thousands of interactions I have had over the years and how God has allowed me to understand and work through the Melancholy task driven temperament affirms for me that I take his yoke upon my shoulders.
Dr. Roy H. Cantrell, II of Gallatin, TN is a Certified Pastoral Member of the Sarasota Academy of Christian Counseling and has been an International Representative since 2015. Currently, Dr. Cantrell is the Director/President of Gateway Institute, a Certified Academic Institution College of the N.C.C.A. Also, through the N.C.C.A. Dr. Cantrell is a Licensed Clinical Pastoral Counselor.
As an International Representative for the SACC and a messenger of the Gospel, I feel compelled to share with you, as well as any who has a desire to reach others for God’s kingdom, to say “THE HOUSE IS ON FIRE!”
Never before in the history of the modern church has there been such a time and a need for someone to sound the alarm. There will be a price paid for science! Ezekiel says this to all who remain silent. “But if the watchman sees the sword coming and does not blow the trumpet, and the people are not warned, and the sword comes and takes any person from among them, he is taken away in his iniquity; but his blood I will require at the watchman’s hand.” Ezekiel 33:6 (NKJV)
Over the past few months I have been studying the book of Revelation. The one thing that continues to overwhelm me is the urgency of what God is trying to get people to see. First is the blessing that comes from both reading and hearing the words of Revelation and second how imperative it is for this word to be heard.
Here is a question: If your house was on fire and your family were inside would you want someone to warn you or sound the alarm?
This is why I see such a need for Godly Christian counselors today. We see the hurting; we see the pain, the brokenness. We have the ability to introduce people to the One who can take all the pain and suffering away from all humanity through Jesus Christ. We have the answer and through Jesus we instill hope into everyone we come in contact with. To be able to sound the alarm to let them know: “THE HOUSE IS ON FIRE.”
The tools and experience that I have gained over the years have been very useful in getting people to hear the alarm, two of them stand out.
First: is the ability to read and understand the Bible and in doing so hearing God speak.
Second: is the understanding and the use of Temperament.
When the Word of God is allowed to be used in the counseling arena, “It will change lives.” Like many of you, I learned at the feet of many great instructors. At the top of the list the Arnos must have a place. The “Spirit” of a person speaks volumes about who that person really is. It is evident that the Spirit of God is not only on the Arnos, but in them, as well as their ministry. I thank God for allowing them to hear His voice in all that they have done to let people know: “THE HOUSE IS ON FIRE!” Sound the alarm!