2016 Devotional Plan & Counseling

This will be a work in  progress.  After having completed in the past 14 months Spurgeons’ Sermons [10 volumes,246 sermons and 4279 pages],I am taking a completely different tract for the remaining months of this year.

I have decided to concentrate on the book of Psalms. This approach for me is unique in that I am looking for topics and how they are dealt with in each Psalm to help hurting hearts that I counsel each week in my Biblically Centered Counseling practice.

Back in my student days 30 years ago, when I was 50 and  working on my D Min, I had chosen as my writing project “Help for Hungry Hearts: A Biblical counseling view of Psalm 119.” It is now interesting to spend a year searching out in many the Psalms as I did in my project dealing with words and concepts to find help for hurting hearts to give them homework.

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As I move through the Psalms. I will from time to time share on this blog what the Lord has blessed me personally and what led me to pass on to clients.

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The first resource that I have found helpful when interpreting the poetry in the Psalms is  an article in the Journal of Biblical Counseling Spring. 2002 by Ken Langley “Genre-Sensitive Use of the Psalms in Counseling.”  pp 38-45. No book of the Bible illuminates our emotions as dramatically or clearly as the Psalms. Emotions like love, hatred, desire, joy, delight, grief, sorrow, fear and hope. A must read for understanding how to counsel from the Psalms.

Psalm One &; Two:

Biblical Meditation and Biblical Counseling by Kyle Johnston is recorded in the Biblical Counseling Coalition February 5, 2013 blog. I highly recommend you read it.

These two introductory Psalms 1 and 2 were not written by David and deal with meditation.

My process will be that in each of the Psalms my counseling suggestions will highlight three ideas: Hope offered, Change suggested,and Homework Assigned.

Under hope: remember that concentrated meditation on the Bible is far superior to transcendental mediation because Hope is based on God’s solid promises.

Under Change: Persons who are depressed or even suicidal have lost all hope. They need to see the possibility of change God can bring to that person.

Homework Assigned: notice how the Psalmist handled the difficult circumstances by applying the Word to the situation. So next time you are temped to despair turn to the Word and meditate on Psalms One and Two. I also recommend that you memorize Psalm 1 as I have done and I do repeat it often.

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Psalm 15

This Psalm lends itself to helping hurting hearts by showing us what is a person after God’s own heart is like. There are six couplets to examine to show the type of person God approves: Study each and see if you are like this person described in verses 2-5.
Assignment: Take each item below and ask/answer how the item offers hope, or what change to you is suggested, and therefore what homework would you give yourself?

His character…
His speech…
His conduct…
His values…
His integrity…
His use of Money…


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