As part of her CLU coursework, Ellen Gratton completed the following report on Counseled by God, which is one of the core elements of our Christian Counseling major. Just look at what the Lord can do in a life when you follow the simple, practical steps that open your heart to receive the healing of the Wonderful Counselor.
Counseled by God Book Report
Counseled by God was originally written by Dr. Mark and Patti Virkler in 1989 with a purpose of informing children of God that as our heavenly Father, He does not intend or expect his children to live their life independent on Him. This book contains a wealth of wisdom pointing to the availability of emotional wholeness through hearing God’s voice. The authors suggest and validate that most of the difficulties experienced by a child of God have a root cause of loss of sight of God and His working in a that child’s life. The totality of this book is an encouragement to meet intimately with God to experience His touch and compassion. The Virkler’s share many personal and intimate encounters from their own lives that reinforce the presented truths.
Through reading this wonderful book I was reminded of the miraculous healing that God did in my life from 2008 through 2010 ignited by my study of ‘Communion with God’ and ‘Prayers That Heal the Heart’ both written by the Virklers. The life changing revelation of hearing Gods’ voice and having Him replace lies with truth, heal and close wounds by his touch and word, remove doubt and replace with faith and cancel accusation with words of life have positioned me to know by first-hand experience that hearing God and receiving His truth is key in my life. I do know the journaling process works as I practice this in my life and I do know the many strategies of the devil. This read has encouraged me to journal more intensely and receive more direct and concise instruction from God himself; in all areas and at all times.
I have known that the pure in heart will see God and have experienced that truth many times in my life. The discussion on seeing God amongst circumstances presented a new opportunity for me. I do believe that I stand on God’s promises during circumstances that present as a challenge. I do believe and know that God’s purposes will come to pass and that He will keep me while all things are worked out. However I have been challenged to look with my spiritual eyes to see what may be happening exactly at that time. I believe I can and will, as I keep my eyes on Jesus, the author and finisher of my faith, be more aware of the happening of the time instead of just waiting for the situation to pass and be worked out. Just as the text presents in chapter one through the example of the Lord opening the servant’s eyes, I can ask for the same. I am encouraged to ask for this more frequently while expecting situations to change quicker as I have more spiritual revelation. This divine knowledge will likely shorten durations of challenging circumstances.
I learned new facts and gained precious truth in chapter four which hosted discussion on incubating only Christ. This chapter offers an explanation of the cause and developmental process of sudden shifts in mood or spiritual attitudes. I did not realize that my spirit has five major senses nor did I understand the creative process associated with those senses. Like Dr. Virkler, I had been taught that the mind, will and emotions were a part of only my soul. This chapter presents that the five senses of the spirit are the eyes or my heart, ears of my heart, inner mind, inner will and inner emotions and that these sense are always active in one of the three stages of the creative process – conception, incubation and birth. This concept quickened in my spirit and gave me a deeper understanding of the important to build up the spirit man, renew the mind, etc., because all of my spirit’s senses are too be filled. It is of vital importance that I remember however, that they can be filled with good or evil, dependent on what I receive and let mature. I have purposed in His strength, to birth only life.
I was greatly ministered to by chapter eight that discusses moving from anger to love, specifically in regard to processing through my emotions. This was a timely message and ministry for me and I am grateful to the Lord. My experience has been that I can become angry with those closest to me. I normally do not lash out in anger nor do I return evil with evil, but I can feel anger beginning at times. My normal course of action is to speak against the spirit of anger in Jesus name and depend on the Lord to keep me through the process. However, I have realized that I can be more proactive by quickly going to God and processing thought the events and circumstances that have been involved in the initiation of the anger feeling. This was a great reminder for me that God wants to know specifically about my feelings, each and every one of them. I am reminded that He cares so much for me and I need to cast this type of care upon Him just as I do other areas. I anticipate that as I go to God quickly and simply have frank and open dialogue with Him about hurt areas that can result in ager or hurt that I will not sin by holding hurt or anger. I expect that this intimate communication with Him right away will erase the matter completely and I have repented for not doing some regularly.
The subject matter in chapter ten on moving from depression to joy also gave me a new perspective. The author discusses catalyst and causes of depression and presents the only true cause as a lack of divine focus resulting in self-pity. Illustration was given that the root cause can bring several root manifestations, that leads to many surfaces causes and manifestations. Again I received personal ministry in this area. Interestingly I have been through a challenge physically over the past year with menopause type symptoms. I was finding myself tired, in pain and unable to keep up with the demands on my life, yet I believed I was doing what God wanted me to do. At times I felt this caused confusion for me. In December of 2013 I had a talk with God about these ailments and how I was standing on the healing already accomplished for me to which He encouraged me to saying “you just need to exercise and stretch more; that will help.” I made that change immediately and found improvement but felt I needed more. I chose to take the course ‘Take Charge of Your Health‘ in January of 2014 and through study found that I was not taking care of my body as I should. I have made many changes most importantly eating better, exercising regularly and taking a super nutrient. I have found that back pain is much less, menopause symptoms are gone and I feel great. This physical change also has lessened the acute battles of depression that I would find myself battling. My affirmation of this chapter is that I had lost divine focus on my body being God’s temple and as a result was allowing these other manifestation to happen and believed these catalysts to be the cause.
God is calling me to live a life in which He is the center of all. He is calling me to deepen my dependence on Him. While I stand in faith as He has commanded I do, I believe He wants me to talk to Him more about myself, to be sure that as I stand I continue to experience truth and revelation quickly. I believe this will remove remaining self-effort on my part and will allow greater more thorough healing in my life.
Through this book I have made some decisions. I will ask for wisdom and revelation more quickly so that He becomes my focus and strength during difficult times. I will incubate only Christ subsequently releasing only life in myself and others. I will commune more often for that intimacy that dispels anger and allows me to live in and minister through His love. I will continue to remember that I have been bought with a price and that I need to glorify God, including caring for my body. I ask for God’s grace to be the ability to accomplish these decisions.
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