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4 MAT Review of McMinns Psychology

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4 MAT Review of McMinns Psychology
4- MAT Review of McMinn’s Psychology, Theology and Spiritually in Christian Counseling
Quinta Anderson
Liberty University

Summary The opening of the book that was written by Dr. Mark McMinn takes the reader on a journey from start to finish. McMinn gives a description of how Christianity is related to psychology. The author teaches about the different translations that the Bible has and how one can relate it to their everyday life ( McMinn, 2011). The translations from the Bible includes Logos words, Rema, and personal living word for each person (McMinn, 2011). Due to the translations that McMinn discussed it is important for a counselor who is willing to utilize Scripture in their counseling sessions to be able to understand the translations and be able to adhere to the word of God. It is important for Christian counselor to have some form of training of theology and psychology so that they will be able to effective in their sessions. The importance of training whether it is formal or informal would allow the counselor to cover all issues that the client may present. If a counselor lacks knowledge and understanding in theology or psychology this could hinder the process of being able to integrate theology and psychology within the session. McMinn suggested that there is an important element that must be presented when one is seeking to be Christian counselor (McMinn, 2011). That element consists of understanding spirituality and the formation of spirituality (McMinn, 2011). If a Christian counselor lacks the knowledge of spirituality and the formation of spiritualty they would not be able to perform and handle the client’s needs when it comes to spiritual needs. ‘ Prayer is a great technique that can be used in counseling sessions. However, if the form of prayer is not used correctly is could have a negative impact on the client. According to McMinn (2011), prayer can be used for three important things such as creating a sense of health for one’s self, creating a healthy sense of need, and healing a relationship. When using prayer in counseling session the counselor has to be very aware of how prayer is used due to the client becoming dependent on prayer and losing the focus of God. Sin is a big topic that most Christian counselor will like to address in session. As a result of this, it is important the counselor and the client be able to conceptualize sin from a theological and spiritual perspective (McMinn, 2011). When a counselor is discussing sin they should be confronting the topic to a standard that is not to embarrass the client, but rather promoting spiritual growth. Some of the techniques that can be utilized when dealing with the topic of sin is silence, pondering, and questioning the clients so they will be able to grasp the concept of how the sin that they committed is wrong (McMinn, 2011). McMinn suggested that when discussing the topic of sin the client should be able to understand their behavior, but not to change their behavior, but willing to promote change in their inner life (McMinn, 2011). McMinn also discussed two other important elements of life such as confession and redemption (2011). McMinn (2011) suggested one should be willing to confess and forgive even though the confession room are no longer in the churches, but in the setting of an office. It is good for one to confess what they have done wrong so they would be able to accept and be aware of their wrongdoings and process of healing. According to McMinn (2011) the word redemption means is “the act of buying back, or recovering by paying a price” (p. 291). McMinn (2011) states that the natural man confesses his sin because he would God’s grace, hope and forgiveness to be granted to him, however only God is able to grant eternal redemption. Needs a concluding sentence to tie it all together.
Response
This book was very relatable and it was able to put something’s into perspective for me that has been going on in my personal life. In this book, after I read chapter seven I came to realize that I have had a lot of anger, resentment, as well as hurt within me since my uncle killed my aunt last year. After reading the chapter I learned that I have been carrying a heavy load around with me for almost a year because I was not willing to forgive him. I found myself becoming depressed and questioning God often. I guess I was not allowing myself to forgive my uncle or trying to forgive myself due to the hatred that I started to formulate overtime. I had to come to terms a week ago, when I visited my aunt’s grave site for the first time within a year. The reality of her being gone was not real until I sat in front of her tombstone for an hour. I felt the Holy Spirit within me saying that I have to learn to let go and be real to myself about her passing. For months, I told myself that she was on a vacation and I just could not talk to her due to her not have an access to a phone. After reading the piece in the book about the three critical elements of forgiveness, I felted a release come over me. I truly understood that death is a part of life and we all must leave this Earth one day. I was able to forgive myself for allowing hate to formulate in my heart and I was able to forgive my uncle for taking my aunt’s life. I’m so sorry!
Reflection
Dr. McMinn’s book gave a great insight on how to incorporate different things in Christian counseling. His book is a good reference for those who are thinking about going into the counseling field as a Christian counselor. McMinn’s book gave an overview of different topics that may arise when dealing with counseling and he gave his perspective on how a Christian may handle certain situations. He gave details on the how a negative outcome may be presented if certain techniques in counseling sessions are used wrong. Due to me working with adolescents and young adults, I noticed that he did not discuss how to use the different techniques when counseling children. I question if the outcome would be different or the same when working with adolescent and young adults? Would the adolescent and young adult’s response to the techniques the same or different from an adult client? I have noticed that adolescents and young adults are probably the most difficult group of clientele to work with because of how they think and how they respond to certain situations. So I wonder how the techniques mentioned in the book would be able to help a 17 year old female who has been abused for most of her life and now has become very promiscuous. What technique should be utilized to help her with her healing process and how to overcome the neglect stigma that has been given to her? McMinn’s book is a good reference for assistance adults, but what about adolescents and young adults?
Actions
McMinn’s book is a great tool for a Christian counselor and one should be very careful on how they handle a client and take all the necessary steps that have been explained in the book to help aid clients. prayer and scripture are great techniques to use during sessions, however, the counselor has to ensure that they are not encouraging techniques that the client is not familiar or uncomfortable with. It is important that the counselor knows his or her strengths and weakness before they start to utilize prayer and scripture. First the counselor has to have a relationship with Christ so that they would be able to hear the message that God would like for them to present. Secondly, the counselor has to have an understanding of their client so they would able to know the limits and measures in case they attempt to incorporate new things with the client. A common thing that most people do not think about or sometimes is hard to talk about is forgiveness especially when the situation is bigger than the client. Therefore, forgiveness is a tool that should be utilized when one is counseling an individual who is suffering from something. When utilizing forgiveness it allows the healing process to start for a client if they have been harmed both emotionally and physically by someone. However, when dealing with forgiveness one has to understand that everyone does not forgive easily and forgiveness is a process that may take some time to work through. McMinn (2011) suggested that forgiveness takes a lot of balance as a Christian. The downfall of rushing the process of forgiveness can lead to the client become detached and lack understanding as well as empathy. So McMinn (2011) suggests that the counselor should discuss the importance of forgiveness which could assist the client that may never thought about forgiveness. But what will you do? How will this book impact your work?

Reference
McMinn, M. R. (2011). Psychology, theology and spirituality in Christian counseling (Rev. ed.). Carol Stream, IL: Tyndale House.

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