Effective Biblical Counseling can never be reduced to the question, “What does the Bible say about [topic]?” Both life and counseling require more than having the right answer to a question. Counseling (or Christian friendship that seeks to embody the “one another” commands of the New Testament) is when one person joins another on his/her journey to cultivate more of the fruit of the Spirit in his/her life by overcoming some life struggle.
What you find below should be considered the “map” for this journey. God’s Word helps us see both where we are (stuck in sin and/or suffering) and where we want to be. The Summit counseling ministry hopes you find both direction and encouragement for your journey in these passages.
This list is updated periodically.
It is not God’s design for us to live in fear and anxiety.
Philippians 4:5-9, “Let your reasonableness be known to everyone. The Lord is at hand; do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me—practice these things, and the God of peace will be with you.”
A characteristic mark of growing in Christian maturity is peace.
Galatians 5:22-26, “But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control; against such things there is no law. And those who belong to Christ Jesus have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires. If we live by the Spirit, let us also walk by the Spirit. Let us not become conceited, provoking one another, envying one another.”
The most important question during anxiety is, “Where will I turn for peace?”
Psalm 56:3-4, “When I am afraid, I put my trust in you. In God, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I shall not be afraid. What can flesh do to me?”
Daily responsibilities bring anxiety and we battle to focus on the Lord.
1 Corinthians 7:32-35, “I want you to be free from anxieties. The unmarried man is anxious about the things of the Lord, how to please the Lord. But the married man is anxious about worldly things, how to please his wife, and his interests are divided. And the unmarried or betrothed woman is anxious about the things of the Lord, how to be holy in body and spirit. But the married woman is anxious about worldly things, how to please her husband. I say this for your own benefit, not to lay any restraint upon you, but to promote good order and to secure your undivided devotion to the Lord.”
Our concern for others produces anxieties that are rooted in compassion.
2 Corinthians 11:28-29, “And, apart from other things, there is the daily pressure on me of my anxiety for all the churches. Who is weak, and I am not weak? Who is made to fall, and I am not indignant?”
Anxiety can be physically exhausting.
Proverbs 12:25, “Anxiety in a man’s heart weighs him down, but a good word makes him glad.”
God is concerned about and wants to hear what troubles our souls.
1 Peter 5:6-7, “Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you.”
Worry does not change life and is of no benefit.
Psalm 127:2, “It is in vain that you rise up early and go late to rest, eating the bread of anxious toil; for he gives to his beloved sleep.”
Anxiety ultimately expresses unbelief in God’s willingness or ability to care for us.
Matthew 6:25-34, “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’ For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.”
Other Passages to Study: Proverbs 3:24-26; Isaiah 9:6, 12:12, 26:3; John 14:1-6, 25-29, 16:33; Romans 8:6; Ephesians 2:14-22; Colossians 3:14-17, 2 Thessalonians 3:16; 2 Timothy 1:6-7
Other Topics to Consider: Character, Change Process, Codependency, Contentment, Decision Making, Emotions (General), Self-Esteem