When sharing with someone about coaching, I am often asked what it is and how it differs from counseling. The following analogy paints a helpful picture:
Counseling is like Archaeology. Needful for getting beneath the surface presenting issues, counseling is most effective when the root system is uncovered and examined in the light of God’s truth. As a tree drinks from its roots, so do we – drawing into our very spirit, soul, and body the substance and our responses to that which has comprised our life.
None of us are shielded from negative or hard things life brings our way. It is how we respond in the midst of them that sows seeds which grow up with us into adulthood. Unresolved negative patterns take root. Childhood formation plays a key part in how our life tree grows and the kind of fruit it produces.
Where there is ‘good fruit’, our life has been nourished in healthy, life-giving ways. Conversely, ‘bad fruit’ provides indicators of areas where negative roots need to be identified and severed through Christ, thus freeing us to make different choices in accordance with God’s will and design for our life.
As hurts, wounds, and traumatic experiences in life are willingly brought to Christ Jesus for healing and forgiveness, freeing breakthroughs are accomplished by the life-giving work and power of the Holy Spirit.
Consider a field being prepared for its crops…
- It is first turned over with furrows riveting its packed down surface.
- Rocks and roots are exposed, but that newly turned-over soil is moving into its next phase of preparation.
- As the rocks and roots are identified and removed, the soil is now receptive to sowing of new seed.
- A good farmer keeps watch over his field, providing life-giving water and fertilizer, weeding, and dealing with pests and threats to the healthy growth and maturation of the crop.
- In its time, as each crop is divinely and uniquely ordained to do, it brings forth its harvest and yields its fruit.
- The crop’s yield doesn’t end there. That for which it has been purposed becomes the very means and method the landowner uses to distribute the harvest for the feeding and nurture of many.
At Shammahs Field LLC and Shammah Ministries, biblically-based counseling is the foundation from which our marketplace ministry operates. My husband, Wayne, is a biblical/pastoral counselor who employs at minimum the principles described above. Our ministry website shares how we counsel and Wayne’s basis for counseling here.
Though I have much of the same counseling background and training as Wayne, my gifting and skill set has focused primarily on coaching and teaching. However, I recognize that in order to move forward in a healthy, sustainable way, sometimes there are issues best addressed in a counseling approach. I may offer potential or current clients the choice of booking time with my husband for deeper unresolved issues (or outside referral if desired), or reserve the right to offer my counseling services on a case by case basis.
I invite you to visit my Coaching page to discover how Coaching is like Architecture, the counterpart to Counseling is like Archaeology.