hsco 506 reply 1 (200 words)

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Group DB Forum 3 Thread: Counseling Mary
Mary has suffered greatly in her life due to her sexual molestation, loss of a child sired by her father, and inappropriate references to scripture and God’s will, leading to unhealthy well-being, depression, a suicide attempt, and the possibility of having Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID). As Mary is still a believer, prayer should be incorporated into her counseling sessions (Peters, n.d.). According to McMinn (2011), prayer could help Mary learn to dispel un-truths instilled in her from her past traumatic experiences, better cope with the pain stem from her life’s events, and experience healthier well-being.
In fact, prayer would be useful in getting Mary to talk with God and open up about her experiences directly in counseling sessions (Peters, n.d.). Prayers purpose can be different for different clients and counselors by endeavoring to find deeper spiritual lives, diminish clients’ irrational thoughts and behaviors, teach clients greater communication skills, to establish a deeper therapeutic client-counselor relationship, and more (McMinn, 2011). As such, McMinn (2011) reported that counselors could pray in-session or outside of the counseling office with and for the client, even without their participation in the prayer.
Two important goals that would be established during counseling sessions would be to appropriately utilize prayer without abusing Mary’s ability to self-direct and without approaching prayer in a manner consistent with Mary’s own spiritual development level (Peters, n.d.). Prayer should be used being mindful of the risks involved as the amount and intensity of the prayer increases as prayer is moved from prayer for clients outside of sessions though intermittent stages of prayer usage that included praying for clients silently in-session, on to usages of devotional meditation (outside versus inside sessions), then incorporating in-session instruction and homework involving prayer, and, finally through occasional and routine levels of prayer during the session (McMinn, 2011). Nevertheless, including prayer into counseling sessions with Mary would still provide greater benefits both to her and to myself as the Christian counselor.
For example, silent prayer has often manifested into a greater recognition “that we are imperfect ministers of God’s grace and truth, seeking the Holy Spirit’s guidance in each word and expression we use” (McMinn, 2011, p. 91). Similarly, for some more religiously inclined clients and their counselors, in-session prayer has led to greater commitments to God and His will (McMinn, 2011). As McMinn (2011) illustrated, through these types of prayer-related counseling techniques, Mary could be taught to dispel a faulty sense of self, grow in forgiveness, become self-forgetful, and recognize that God is not punishing you in life, but is grooming you for better things yet to come.
References
McMinn, R. M. (2011). Psychology, theology, and spirituality in Christian counseling (Rev.
ed.). Carol Stream, IL: Tyndale House.
Peters, C. (n.d.). COUN 506 Week Six, Lecture One: Prayer and Christian counseling. [Power Point]. Lynchburg, VA: Liberty University Online.

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