Spirituality is an important component in counseling because it also contributes to the social, physical and emotional well-being of the client. This survey illustrates the preference that it has of incorporating prayer and scripture into counseling practice. It provides a basic overview and describes the essential desire for prayer among Christian therapists and clients. It also establishes strategies and expectations for integrating spirituality with psychotherapy. These findings indicated the high value that was placed on spirituality and prayer and it showed that high percentage of clients recognized the importance of implementing audible prayers as part of counseling practice.
Key words: Spirituality, Prayer, Scripture, Christian Therapist, Psychotherapy, Well-Being
The Preference and Need for Prayer in Counseling
Method Based on this study a sample of clients that were seeking Christian counseling were surveyed and asked open questions dealing with personal insights, experiences with spirituality and religion. Tools were created as a prayer survey for clients and The Brief Therapist Survey for therapists. Following questions were asked: What are the preferences of clients concerning the intervention of prayer at faith based counseling agencies? Are there differences between client religious affiliation groups in client prayer fulness and client expectations regarding prayer? Is there a relationship between therapist prayer fulness and their clients’ expectations regarding the use of the following five prayer related interventions-therapist intercessory prayer, silent in-session prayer by the therapist, audible in-session prayer by either the therapist or the client, prayer related homework, and who initiates dialogue about prayer? Is there a relationship between client prayer fulness and client expectations regarding prayer related interventions, as listed? Are there relationship between therapist use of prayer related interventions and their clients’ expectations of prayer related interventions, as listed? Participants
A group of people who appeared in the survey were clients and therapists, adults ranging from 18-77 years old ( male & female) with various ethnicity background and religious affiliations. Adult clients (n = 165) where 64% were female (n=108) and 36% were male (n= 59). Clients were distributed accordingly to see if there were any differences among them. Out f 94% reporting age, (n=155) 29% were (n= 45) were 18-29 years of age, 22% (n=34) were 30-39 years of age, 33% (n= 51) were 40-54 years of age, and 16% (n=25) were 55 years of age or older. Out of 81.8% (n= 135) were Caucasian, 8.5% (n = 14) were Latino-American, 2.4% (n = 4) were African-American, 2.4% (n = 4) were Asian American, 18% (n = 3) were Native American, 1.2% (n = 2) were Middle Eastern, and 1.2 % (n = 2) reported other. Of the 99% (n= 163) received previous counseling, 56% (n = 91) had not received prior Christian counseling, and 44% ( n = 72) had received prior Christian counseling. Out of the 94.5% (n=156) reporting religious affiliation, 42% (n = 69) were non-denominational/evangelical, 28% (n = 47) were mainline Protestants, 8% (n...