At our church, we tend to be involved in discipling others, and I’ve found that the more you teach classes and disciple other people, the more messy lives that you run across. These messy lives need guidance, but who is the person who is to guide them? This is one of the many questions that Paul Tautges aims to answer in his book, Counseling One Another: A Theology of Interpersonal Discipleship. I was pleased t get the opportunity to review this book recently, and wanted share some of the insights that I’ve gleaned from this book.
I had always grown up thinking, and continued to think as an adult, that dealing with messy lives is the job of a professionally trained counselor, someone who knew all the psychological issues that someone could suffer from and how to handle them. However, as I began to read Tautges book, I had a revelation from his writing. He begins by discussing Fuller Seminary and their doctrinal shift in their school of psychology. They began to feel that they could merge the worldly wisdom of counseling with the Biblical leadership that Christians are called to build their lives around. The result, tragically would be that the counseling program of their school would continually shift away from the gospel and more and more towards men’s wisdom.
Tautges proposes a shift in thinking from the idea of Biblical counseling in being the role of the psychologist to Biblical counseling being the goal of every disciple maker. He spends the rest of the book why this could be the case. In the course of this study his creates an excellent exegesis of several passages in Corinthians and Peter as well as other verses. He explains masterfully how the conversion of our sin natures when we are saved creates a call to disciplined godliness and how, through God’s words and loving relationships with other believers, we can be continually sanctified. The final chapters discuss the why of combating against worldly psychology and how discipleship works in the community of faith.
I found this book to be a very timely book as I’ve been trying to figure out what my responsibility is as a discipler and as a disciple, as a member of the church and as someone who teaches and deals with other people often. I was most impressed by the ideas that I encountered in this book, and often challenged. As a result of reading this book, I feel more confident in my role as a mentor to other women and youth and I feel that I will be able to better able to disciple others as a result of the ideas that I’ve processed in this book.
Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book for review from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.