In our work as therapists in Tulsa and Broken Arrow, we introduce ourselves as “a Christian counselor.” Sometimes people don’t really understand what that actually means. It is part of our title just as Licensed Professional Counselor, Marriage and Family Therapist, or Psychologist, identifies are professional mental health training. The word “Christian” identifies the person and beliefs we have. As Christian mental health providers, we bring two important things to the therapy session:
- Biblical worldview – In an article by Focus on The Family, “What is a Christian Worldview?”, the author explains that “Whether conscious or subconscious, every person has some type of worldview. A personal worldview is a combination of all you believe to be true, and what you believe becomes the driving force behind every emotion, decision and action. Therefore, it affects your response to every area of life…”1
Our Biblical worldview impacts our thoughts and choices as we make decisions for ourselves, our family, and our clients. The Bible offers the basis of this biblical worldview in Luke 10:27 (NIV), “’Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’” The belief that we are to love God and love others is the foundation of compassion that allows us to feel empathy and concern for you, the therapy client. It is also the well from which we draw the values that make up who we are as people.
- Biblical values – In her book, 10 Christian Values Every Kid Should Know, Donna J. Habenict offers the following list of biblical values:
- Faith in God
- Self-control and Moderation
- Honesty and Integrity
- Kindness and Compassion
- Contentment and Thankfulness
- Patience and Perseverance
- Peace and Humility
- Loyalty and Commitment1
While this list may not be exhaustive, we believe it describes the values we try to live out in our daily life and in our counseling work as a therapists at Legacy Counseling Service in Broken Arrow. When you come to us these are foundational to the people we are and the person you will have counseling you through your difficult times.
We are far from perfect, but our goal is to live out this worldview and these values each and every day. We acknowledge when we make mistakes and try to be open to the criticism of others so that we can grow and develop more and more in our lives as Christian women and as ethical mental health providers.
Does having a Christian therapist mean you must be a Christian or that we will preach to you each time you come to the office? Certainly not! Being a Christian therapist is more about us than it is about you. It’s who we are, individually, and how we think. It forms the foundation of where our compassion for every person comes from, regardless of race, gender, sexuality, income status, ability/disability, or past choices. Will we talk about God in session? Maybe, if you are comfortable with that. Will we pray with you? Yes, if you tell us that prayer is important to you and if you ask us to. Will we debate the Bible? No; we are not theologians. We are simply well trained, compassionate mental health providers who also happen to be active Christians. The purpose of therapy is to address your needs and not debate whether the Bible is true or if God is real.
You can be confident, as you come into the therapy session, that you know the foundation of our worldview. As Christians, we are called to love God and love our neighbors; that is the comfort we offer you at Legacy Counseling Service in Broken Arrow. As licensed mental health professionals, we are called to provide authentic, ethical, evidence-based care; that is the skill we offer you at Legacy Counseling Service.
All of the staff at Legacy Counseling Service are active in their Christian walk, from Christi who will help you make appointments, to Cindy Fugatt, Abby Simpson, Sandy Stone, Dr. Donita Smith, and Dr. Melissa Leedy. We are Christians who also happen to be therapists.
If you are looking for a Christian therapist or just looking for someone you can trust to help you, your elementary aged child or teen, or your marriage heal from depression, anxiety, low self-esteem, family or school issues or social difficulties, visit our website at http://legacycounselingservice.com for more information.
1 (Tackett, 2006)
2 (Habenict, 2000)