Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Man's Means and God's Will For Perfection

"In our fles h dwells no good thing, but Christians are more than flesh." I would add to this that both Christians and the rest of humanity are more than flesh. Dr. Crabb's stance on therapies purpose correlates well with Dr. Corsini's basic premise in his course, COUN 507. This premise is that therapy for the Christian counselor has it's foundation in the understanding that apart from the Spirit and the healing hand of God, therapy is only putting a band-aid on a mortal wound.

When I was finishing up my senior year of undergraduate studies in psychology, I was impressed with all of the different personality and development theorists. I especially enjoyed the Humanistic school of thought regarding fully functioning person and self-actualization. In my opinion, these were the things that client's and really everyone should strive for. I believed that counseling should focus on the influence of interpersonal relationships on a client’s self-concept, and the demonstrate the importance of choice and self-direction in striving to reach one’s potential through guiding the client while letting them maintain autonomy. In a sense, I still feel this way. All of these things are important in the counseIor-client relationship. It seems evident to me that humanity has it within themselves to change who they are as an individual by altering aspects such as self-concept and self esteem and I also believe that humans have the ability to change where they are in life, whether it is their socioeconomic status or relationships.

However, eventually I began to think, or God was changing my perspective that humanism essentially asks too much of the wrong thing from people, a kind of self-imposed perfection. People can be irrational creatures and everyone has a fallen and sinful nature which leads to failure, especially when good behavior and a healthy persona is placed in our own hands. The concepts of self-actualization and a fully functioning person are excellent things to strive for but everyone will come short, even those that do achieve something like self-actualization and fully-functioning person will not indefinitely remain at such a state. Humanity falls short of perfection and individuals will constantly fall short of humanism’s ideal person. As a Christian, it is important to stress that the strength to change, overcome and find fulfillment is derived from God enhancing or enabling man's ability for psychological renewal, and not by man's ability alone. After all, it is meaningless to strive for and achieve perfection by man's standards and forfeit our eternal souls.


  1. I think we should always be very careful about how much we expect a person to be able to change prior to them submitting thier lives to Christ. Before we were born again, we were all "dead in our trespasses and sins." Dead people usually aren't very good at changing anything. I know first hand how impossible it was to improve myself prior to giving my life to Christ. In fact, the two things I tried to change the most were what ultimtely brought me to my knees. God used my heavy drinking and uncontrollable foul language to show me just how NOT in control of my life I really was- and thankfully it drove me to Him, and I've never looked back! Not that salvation is going to instantly make everyone better in all areas of thier life, but in my opinion, it has to be part of the solution or it's all in vain.

  2. I believe its practically impossible for any significant change to happen without Christ. I agree with a lot of the things said in this post. I think its important that we as Christians aspire to help people know God, and then help them change their bad behavior. My sister is a lesbian, and for a long time I really struggled with how do I communicate the gospel to her. Dr. Daryl Pitts, a professor at Liberty, and pastor at TRBC who recently passed away, told me that they key is to communicate the gospel to her the same way I would anybody else. Focus on her need for Jesus, not on her need to change her sin. Great advice, from a great man.


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