Fairy Tak, Trainer and Counselor- BCTI
I had a recent reminder of the truth that the Holy Spirit is the real Counselor and that people need the The Comforter, in times of struggle lest I start putting my trust on the knowledge and skills of counselling that I have acquired over the years.
It was in one of the recent counseling trainings when I and my team member were helping the participants to practice counseling. We had given the roles of counsellor as well as the counselee and had allotted a time limit of ten minutes for each counselling practice. The counselee was expected to share a real struggle from his or her own life and the one listening had to take the role of a counselor. While a particular counseling was taking place, rest of the participants and the trainers were to observe it and later give feedback. Everything was going according to the plan till Aradhana (name changed) came up for counseling.
Aradhana was obviously nervous and in the beginning it was evident she was not very sure as to what she really wanted to share. The ‘counselor’ was looking quite confident. Aradhana started slowly to share her personal problem of how she felt unloved and unsupported by her family. Then it went on to detail account of the painful history of her life in the family. All on a sudden she burst out crying for help and we were witnessing an outpouring of the pain she had kept inside her for so long finding an unexpected outlet right in front of us. It felt like a silent volcano erupting all on a sudden. As she kept on going much beyond her allotted time, none of us including the ‘counselor’ had a clue as to how to stop her or what were we supposed to do with her problem. Then there was a long and uncomfortable silence in the room and the entire group was wondering who will break the silence.
I was struggling in my heart as to what should I be doing to comfort her and to help the ‘counselor’ who was sitting helplessly in front of the ‘counselee’. I couldn’t think of any skill at that moment which was going to help. But then with the prompting of the Holy Spirit I went to her and prayed to the Lord to comfort her. The whole class joined me in praying for her. After I had finished praying she felt at ease. Though I was not sure what others were thinking at that point but God reminded me that Holy Spirit is the Counselor. Our knowledge and skills can perhaps help ‘diagnosis’ the problem but comfort and healing can only come from God who is always in control of everything in our lives as well as the lives of those whom we are called to minister to. God reminded me again on that day that I really can’t answer questions that people have but I am called to lead them to Jesus who alone can give comfort and strength according to their needs.