At TIL, we have a team approach to ministry. Everything we do is in a team approach. We have 2 biblical counselors in almost every counseling session. Our volunteers love this approach as do our counselees! There is another team dynamic going on in our sessions, too, that may surprise you.
Our approach to ministry is very different from many modern ministry approaches though the model is an ancient model that was instituted by Jesus Himself almost 2,000 years ago according to Luke 10:1-2: “After this the Lord appointed seventy-two others and sent them on ahead of Him, two by two, into every town and place where He Himself was about to go. And He said to them, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few.”**
What I love about these verses is that Jesus sent them ahead of Him. They went ahead of where He was going. It is the same for TIL biblical counselors. We go ahead of Jesus to where He is going. We KNOW He will be there in the counseling session with us!
Here’s how it works: the biblical counselors begin by LISTENING to the problems, situations, trials, and difficulties of the counselees. As our team of 2 counselors/disciplers listen, we are carefully gathering information. We want to be sure we have accurately heard the matter and assessed it biblically before speaking. We then pray for God’s wisdom when we speak the truth in love to the persons we are serving. That’s when Jesus shows up!
He sent us ahead of Himself to listen and then He does the work THROUGH us when we speak His biblical truths in a Spirit of love. It is this love of the Holy Spirit that is spoken through us that ministers to the person. Often, the Holy Spirit will bring conviction in order for the person to receive correction from a loving Heavenly Father Who may be disciplining His child for the child’s own good (Heb. 12:5-11). We are not disciplining the person but God is. We are not judging the person because we know that we are sinners saved by God’s grace, too. We are merely speaking the Truth in Love to this person so that the person can become a better disciple and follower of Christ.
Personally, I love this model of teamwork best because not only are we teaming with each other in TIL, but we are teaming with Jesus Who sent us ahead of Himself. We KNOW that He keeps His promises and that He will be showing up in our sessions when we speak His truth in the love of Christ to the hurting souls we serve. We are privileged to be on the winning team with the greatest Head coach of all-time, the Lord Jesus Christ!
-Mark (amazed at His wisdom)