Christian Counseling &
Restoring Christ to counseling and counseling to the church.
Biblical Counseling at CCEF
The aim of CCEF is to consider how caring for people’s souls can be increasingly wise and helpful. This is sometimes identified as biblical counseling. We intend this not as a protected trademark but as a body of work to which many contribute. It describes the troubles we face, how those troubles are experienced, how God speaks to us during those troubles, and how we help each other with wisdom and love.
Within the growing CCEF literature and teaching, there is a common core. Here are seven recurring themes within that core.
The triune God—Father, Son and Spirit—have always known reciprocal fellowship and unity, and he has created us to participate in that fellowship. He welcomes us to himself through Jesus Christ. The Spirit connects us to Jesus, and Jesus is the only way to the Father.
This foundational reality has critical implications. God’s plan is to be close to us and for us to draw near to him. Herein lies the source of our interest in relationships and human connection. In response, our care for each other is inviting and familial.
As the care of souls, biblical counseling is the ministry of the Word done face to face. It shares the same interests as the preaching of the Word in that it brings the many facets of the gospel of Jesus to the details of daily life. Yet its setting is the wise, encouraging conversations that are essential to church vitality, and the skillful help offered during crises. Biblical counseling is one-another ministry carried out by every person in the church in which we speak the truth in love so that we might all grow up into Christ (Eph 4:15).
From this home in the church, biblical counseling moves out and appears in conversations with neighbors, parachurch organizations that strengthen communities, professional counseling offices, and many other places where God’s people work to meaningfully bring the truth of Scripture to the troubles of life.
We have come a long way in our journey to grow in counseling wisdom. And we have a long way to go still. We are not yet what we will be, and we aspire to be continually refined and sharpened.
There is an invitation to the fresh wisdom that comes as we continue to explore how the riches of Scripture meet the complexities of life. The Father, Son, and Holy Spirit bring real hope and a vision for change. May our God grant us ears to hear, eyes to see, compassionate and humble hearts, and a desire to grow together.
CCEF works to restore Christ to counseling.
Each of us has personal and interpersonal struggles. Jesus Christ knows those struggles, he cares about strugglers, and so he enters into our lives. We see him bring about significant change in people’s lives every day. Because this is who Christ is, and because this is what he does, he is preeminently relevant to counseling. This conviction is our heritage and heartbeat.
CCEF works to restore counseling to the church.
We believe that the body of Christ is God’s primary context for change. God uses Christian community to transform his people. CCEF’s mission is to equip the church to be this kind of transforming community. We see ourselves as an extension of the local church, and we want to serve and promote its ministry. The good news of the gospel is meant to be preached, taught, and counseled with relevance to individual people. Our goal is to equip Christians to live, love, and counsel.
Christian growth catches fire where life and Scripture meet.
We change when, in the midst of our day-to-day joys, sorrows, sufferings, and sins, we encounter Jesus Christ through his Word and find his grace and mercy for our time of need.
We help others change when, in the midst of their day-to-day joys, sorrows, sufferings, and sins, we point them to Jesus Christ through his Word to find grace and mercy for their time of need.
CCEF endeavors to:
- connect the dots between Scripture’s truth and human experience
- explore how God’s Word meets us in our both our daily and our darkest struggles, as well as in our fragile and fractured relationships
- discern from Scripture how to help and care for another person with love, humility, and wisdom
- pursue lasting fidelity to Christ and how he would have us counsel, write, speak, and train
Who We Are
Each of us began our work at CCEF when we personally experienced how God’s words and actions reached into our lives in ways we didn’t anticipate. We were not expecting our God to speak so deeply to our daily conflicts, pain, thoughts, emotions, purpose, identity, work, trauma, and griefs.
This, of course, is not new but it is fresh and fascinating: everything about human experience connects to our triune God. The details of human life can all be brought to the question: Who is God, what has he done, and what does he say? His words always speak with love, hope and relevance.
From that simple distinctive we have set out to know people more accurately in all their complexity. We also have set out to search Scripture, which is like searching through a vast treasure. Our desire is to grow in both knowing people and knowing the God of Scripture in order to meaningfully bring people to this treasure and bring this treasure to everyday life.
What We Do
Our counselors seek to walk alongside struggling and suffering people with humility, love, and biblical wisdom. We also offer support and mentoring through consultation to ministry leaders and counselors to help them better serve those in their care.
Our authors produce books, booklets, and other training materials that are rooted in Scripture, practical, and accessible to individuals and churches. We publish the Journal of Biblical Counseling three times a year, and our website provides a wide array of additional resources including articles, blogs, podcasts and other audio and video resources.
Our annual national conference is a unique opportunity for people to enjoy robust teaching on an important counseling topic, and to connect and worship with hundreds of like-minded people around the world. Our faculty and counselors also speak at other seminars, events, and conferences upon request.
Our fully online program allows students from all over the world to delve into a wide range of courses on biblical counseling. Whether for personal edification, to be equipped in formal or informal ministry, or to pursue a career in counseling, our courses offer rich content and meaningful opportunities to connect with others for a transformative learning experience.