The Pastor & Seeking Counsel

by Jack Hyles

1.  Never seek counsel from your members about personal matters.

2.  It is all right to seek counsel about personal business.

3.  Do not seek counsel regularly from the same person or persons.  (Don’t create system that will not function when the participants are gone.)

4.  Read, read, read; especially biographies.

5.  Never confess a sin to others unless you have wronged them.

6.  Do not confess beyond the area that the sin is known.

7.  Do not trust the confidentiality of anyone in the world.  If you want sympathy get it from Jesus alone.

8.  Seek counsel from your children about ways to counsel other children and teens.  This brings you closer to your children and makes them feel needed.

9.  Seek professional counsel only from someone farther along in your field.

10.  Seek counsel from your children concerning obvious matters; this is a wonderful way to make them feel needed and close.

11.  Do not seek counsel from your wife unless it is in her field and you are going to follow it.

12.  Do not bring problems home to your wife; women cannot carry the load that men can.  (Do you have a problem?  No, I have a church, but when I look at you I forget what they are.)

13.  Do not share your burden with anyone just to get sympathy.

14.  Do not lead by seeking sympathy.  They will respond at first, but not later if you keep doing it.  You are there to meet their needs.  One of the hardest things for a pastor to accept is that he is voted on every Sunday.  They come for sympathy and strength.  Leadership gives strength; it doesn’t take it.

15.  Do not let your burdens become obvious.  Work on theirs and forget yours.  Run as fast as; you can continue to run.

16.  Do not share publicly or privately bad letters.  Never read anonymous letters.  Do not continue to read a letter once you discover its critical nature.  If you are tempted to feel sorry for yourself you can’t help someone else.  If God can’t see you through, you shouldn’t be seen through.

17.  Seek counsel concerning how to counsel in a difficult case.  Reschedule the appointment.  Don’t forget the wise men who are not nationally known.

18.  Learn to counsel with yourself.  (Picture someone coming to you with the same problem.  Remember that most depression is caused by an irregular schedule.  Ask yourself it  comes at any particular time of the day, week, or month.  Do not lose your rhythm.  Ask yourself if there is a rhythm to your depression.  Is there a certain time for it?)

19.  Beg God to control your mind.

20.  Constantly ask for wisdom.

21.  Do not expect a woman to have a man’s disposition.

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