This book addresses the battle for healthy Christian marriages. The failure of one marriage produces failures throughout the family, with the young people coming from those homes and in the marriages formed by those children. We are unable to estimate the damage done when marriages fail. This is not just happening in the world around us. It is happening in the ranks of ministers, within the families of our congregation and among our own children. We can choose to avoid this crisis, by hiding in our secluded world of stained glass and stately music. Scott Peck in his classic book The Road Less Traveled, stated, avoidance is the beginning of mental illness. 1.He was right. This will drive us crazy! Instead, we can choose to join others on the battlefield. Bo Prosser and Charles Qualls have advised us, "Let's try to frame the discussion around healthy marriages. A healthy marriage is better than a normal marriage." 2 We will have many allies when we do. These are dedicated physicians, psychiatrists, professional therapists, social workers, school counselors and an army of others who have a role in this battle. There are several battle stations we can fill. We can provide training opportunities for those getting married and for the married, coach those trying to do better, and provide first aid for those wounded in this battle. We in the helping professions must also see ourselves as MASH units, picking up the wounded from the battlefield and giving them a chance for healing. This book is designed to inform ministers who want to enter the battlefield as a soldier. 1. Some who read this may choose to enter the counseling ministry with a sense of calling for long-term service. 2. Some who read this may learn enough to give first aid and remember the physician's code of "Heal when you can, do no harm when you cannot." 3. All who come to these pages will be helped in some way to join the battle. Several stations we can fill: Guarding those married and getting married, Coaching for those doing battle, Giving first aid for those getting wounded. While we in the helping vocation of professional counselors see ourselves as the MASH unit, picking up the wounded from behind the front line and giving them first aid and care, we need help. Our best allies are ministers. Some of them are on the battlefields, while many are cloistered in their cathedrals unaware of the battle scene. We intend for this book to be a practical guide for ministers in marriage counseling, presented in everyday language. You will indicate to us to what degree we were successful by your response to the call to help build healthy Christian marriages. n
Marriage Counseling 101: A Practical Guide for Ministers by Patsy Highland was published by Newburgh Press in March 2009 and is our 55189th best seller. The ISBN for Marriage Counseling 101: A Practical Guide for Ministers is 9780979062513.