Running head: SBSPC SCENARIO


Final Project: Solution-focused, Short-term Pastoral Counseling Scenario

Mercy Me

Liberty University

[Disclaimer: This student sample is not to be considered more authoritative than the final project instructions & rubric. It is simply a picture of how a fellow-PACOneer successfully completed this learning activity. Though some proofreading, format, APA glitches, and missed expectations (e.g., body of paper was 15 pages vs. 14 page expectation) were present, this sample did satisfactorily organize cumulative work with a noticeably fresh synthesis of a solution-based, short-term pastoral counseling scenario. In like fashion, make every effort to do original work!]


The Final Project applies the distinctive features of a solution-based, short-term pastoral counseling strategy to a counseling scenario with a pre-determined care-seeker, Brody, from the case study Crossroads: A Story of Forgiveness. It is the purpose of this writer to artificially move Brody through an abridged counseling process. The student counselor, Mercy Me, is the youth minister of an American Baptist Church with approximately 150 active members located in the close-knit, small community of Shingle Hollow, NC. Mercy’s hallmark purpose, glorifying God by being and imitator of Christ, guides, directs, and develops the process of tailoring her I/S DISC relational style to best demonstrate fit and build rapport with Brody’s C/S DISC relational style. The solution-based, short-term pastoral counseling strategy is utilized to move Brody from an attending position in phase one to a willing position in phase two. The counselor recognizes Brody’s grief and depression as a result of the tragic loss of his mother and sister. Making matters worse, the noticeable anger presents from a hostile, tension filled relationship between Brody and his father, Bruce.

Table of Contents


Phase One…………………………………………………………………………………………5

Brody’s Counseling Session: Phase One………………………………………………………….6

Phase Two…………………………………………………………………………………………9

Brody’s Counseling Session: Phase Two……………………………………………………….10

Phase Three………………………………………………………………………………………13

Brody’s Counseling Session: Phase Three…………………………………………………..…..14

Phase Four…………………………………………………………………………………….…17

Brody’s Counseling Session: Phase Four………………………………………………………..18




Crossroads: A Story of Forgiveness (2013) is a story about a street racing accident resulting in a tragedy for the Murakami family (p. 4). Justin, a teenage street racer, caused an accident that took the lives of Cindy and Chelsea (i.e., Cindy: wife and mother from the case study; Chelsea: daughter from the case study; Crossroads Case Study, 2013). This project follows one specific care-seeker, Brody (i.e. Brody: second son from case study; Crossroads Case Study), in the aftermath of the tragedy through an abridged solution-based, short-term pastoral counseling (SBSPC) scenario. The project design requires the student-counselor to demonstrate a working knowledge of the SBSPC strategy rooted in a research-based perspective and provides an evolving resource to support the student in ongoing soul-care ministry (Liberty University, Final Project Instructions, 2013, p.1).

The SBSPC strategy is a structure made up of four phases with distinctive features in each which serve as guard rails in the counseling process under the authority of God’s Word. SBSPC takes into consideration the person, and the counselor’s task is to adequately understand the problem so that the care-seeker can move away from it. Counseling is a brief, time-limited, and focused process, and the counselor operates under the assumption that God is always active in the care-seeker (Liberty University, Solution-focused, Short-term Pastoral Counseling Overview Presentation, 2013).

Rejecting deficiency language and a problem-focused paradigm, allowing the outcome to dictate the process, and developing the guidelines and skills for creative goal formation in the counseling interview delineate core strengths of the SBSPC strategy (Kollar, 2011, p.14-5). Believers and nonbelievers alike need God’s touch, and counselors are chosen as a way of delivering God’s special care and grace (Clinton & Hawkins, 2009, p. 8). The ability to suggest a life of victory and faith inform a counselor’s work and meets an individual’s needs (Kollar, p. 45). It is this perspective that makes the SBSPC suitable for specific soul-care context (Clinton & Hawkins, 2009, p. 8). Counselors that employ the SBSPC strategy are well trained and skilled in practice and methodology, but they rely directly on the Holy Spirit to work in them to do the ministry of God. The SBSPC strategy addresses soul care through the belief that God brings the people to the counselor, and the counselor depends on Him to touch others in a supernatural way. According to Clinton and Hawkins (2009), this student-counselor can anticipate bearing kingdom fruit through this counseling process (p.8-9).


A. An effective pastoral counseling interview incorporates the distinctives of the SBSPC strategy in the counseling interview (i.e., Purpose; Goal; Chief Aim; Roles/Responsibilities; Guiding Assumptions)(Liberty University, 2013, F.A.I.T.H. for SBSPC, p.1).

· The purpose of phase one is to get the care-seeker’s story (Liberty University F.A.I.T.H. for SBSPC, 2013, p.1).

· The goal is to get a description of the problem (Liberty University F.A.I.T.H. for SBSPC, 2013, p.1).

· The counselor’s chief aim is to actively listen to the care-seeker so that he feels heard (Liberty University F.A.I.T.H. for SBSPC, 2013, p.1).

· The counselor’s role/responsibilities in phase one is to build a safe, open, and secure environment by developing rapport and demonstrating fit (Liberty University Solution-Based, Short-term Pastoral Counseling Presentation, 2013).

· The counselor’s guiding assumptions are imperative to fitting with the care-seeker. The counselor must assume that God is already at work in the care-seeker. This assumption will cause the counselor to look for grace events (death of his family/struggle with his father and grief), strengths, and exceptions to the problem. The following guiding assumption is extremely important when working with a care-seeker in the attending position: “The counseling relationship is positional” (Kollar, 2011, p.86).

· Session one will consist of searching for evidence of exceptions through actively listening (Kollar, 2011, p. 92). In phase one listening to the care-seeker will make the care-seeker feel heard and the counselor will demonstrating fit. Providing encouraging feedback, looking for clues, and awaiting an invitation into the care-seeker’s world are components of phase one that move the counseling process forward (Kollar, p. 93).

· It is imperative for a counselor to align his relating style to the care-seekers to best demonstrate fit, cultivate rapport, and collaborate well (Kollar, 2011, p. 95).

· By utilizing active, attentive listening and people skills the counselor’s responsibility is to establish a collaborative relationship. The counselor should paraphrase back what the care-seeker has shared about his problem to confirm what has been heard and validate his feelings (Kollar, 2011, p.92).

· Success of phase one relies heavily on the counselor’s listening skills to demonstrate fit and develop rapport. Realness, genuineness, respect for the care-seeker and understanding the care-seeker’s thoughts should be portrayed during active listening (Kollar, 2011, p. 142).

· Active listening should be done without judgment. The counselor should not be listening for right and wrongs. The counselor needs to focus on listening to understand. This will allow for the counselor to become engaged in what the care-seeker is trying to say. The best way to listen without judging is to become a cohort with the speaker, which allows the counselor and counselee to struggle together to learn what is trying to be said (Peterson, p.96-97).

· By actively listening to the problem, the counselor will discern what SBSPC skills are most helpful (Liberty University, F.A.I.T.H. for Phase One Presentation, 2013).

· Consider personality development and God’s intention. Personality development is formed by choices (Kollar, 2011, p. 51). “We know that we must be in agreement with God’s intention for our lives if we wish to walk with him (Amos 3:3)” (Kollar, 2011, p. 53).

· The counselor should have a clear understanding of his/her personality patterns to better understand care-seekers. The knowledge of their own personality will help them to better demonstrate fit with the care-seeker (Carbonell, 2008, p. 13).

As a means of demonstrating a fresh touch to the cumulative work accomplished through previous learning activities, this student-counselor created phase narratives to support her annotated outline.

Brody’s Counseling Session: Phase One

Based on the distinctives for phase one, the counselor will validate Brody’s feelings while listening for clues that reveal Brody’s strengths and exceptions to the problem (Kollar, 2011, p.92). With Brody, the counselor must listen in a way that encourages him to invite her in. If the counselor makes him feel secure through listening skills, he will be much more apt to share and trust (Peterson, 2007, P.101). In order to fulfill the responsibility of “fit” the counselor must show Brody that she identifies with and understands Brody’s concerns. Based on the biblical principle of rejoicing with those that rejoice and mourning with those that mourn (Romans 12:15), the counselor needs to show Brody that she is walking with him. Exhibiting similar verbal and nonverbal cues as Brody, the counselor will maintain eye contact focused attention demonstrating that she is totally there for him (Kollar, 2011, p.95).

Brody is in an attending position in the first counseling interview. Brody confided in his older brother, Josh, about issues he was having with his Father and grief. He expressed feeling invisible, unwanted, and only pretending to be alive as he felt a part of him had died with his mother and sister. Bruce, Brody’s father, immediately went to Brody (Liberty University Case Study: Crossroads, 2013, p.11). Brody is in counseling at the insistence of his father. Phase one identified Brody’s problem as having relational problems with Bruce because of his business and need to seek justice, as well as, what appears to Brody as a lack of interest in him and the things he cares about. The grief he is experiencing over the loss of his mother and sister was convoluted by the tension between Brody and Bruce. Brody feels as though he is losing his father as well (Liberty University Case Study: Crossroads, p.11).

Given that Brody is in the attending position, the counselor will discern ways to encourage Brody to become a willing participant (Kollar, 2011, p.81). Brody will remain in phase one until he invites the counselor into his world and while he is in the attending position (Liberty University F.A.I.T.H. for SBSPC, 2013, p.1).

Based on Brody’s personality patterns evidenced in the case study, he is consistent with a C/S personality type (Carbonell, 2008, p.167). Brody often relied on assurance from his mother and his avoidance of confrontation with his father, while his mother was living, is consistent with this personality type. Brody is very security-oriented, which is the main motivator for “S” personality types (Carbonell, p. 17).

As Brody’s counselor, it is imperative to develop rapport and fit quickly because he relates best to those he feels closest. This personality type can sometimes be too reserved, and they do not like taking risks (Carbonell, 2008, p. 170). This student’s DISC Professional-Leadership Profile “This is Expected of Me” is an I/S personality type (DISC Professional-Leadership Profile). Therefore, she will utilize her people skills and desire to serve others to make Brody feel secure (Carbonell, p.63). Brody responds best to people that are easy going and soft spoken (Carbonell, p.169). To best “fit” with Brody and come alongside him, she will have to control her tendency to appease and concentrate on actively listening, and suppress her talkative nature. This personality pattern is not known for having the best listening skills, so this will have to be a skill she focuses on intently (

Due to Brody’s desire for security, especially in a one-to-one relationship, he invited this counselor into his world by expressing a desire to improve the relationship with his father as it would assist him to cope with the grief. While this student believes Brody has changed from the attending position, he has only moved into the blaming position. Brody is not in the willing position because he sees his father as the sole problem since he does not take an interest in him and is invested in his business and the trial; consequently, it seems that Brody has given up as he knows he cannot bring back his family. He views his grief as inescapable, but does acknowledge some benefits to changing his attitude and relationship with his father. Following the invitation into Brody’s world, the counselor should consider portraits of grief (given the tragedy), anger, and possibly suicide (Clinton & Hawkins, 2009, pp. 39, 130, 254). The case study explains Brody feels invisible, unwanted, unnoticed, and he would have preferred to die with his mother and sister (Liberty University Case Study: Crossroads, 2013, p.11). The counselor will utilize scaling questions to assess grief and anger. The counselor is attempting to determine if the grieving process and anger has cycled into a debilitating depression (Clinton & Hawkins, p.41, 132). Also, the counselor must assess questions for the suicidal person; empathy is essential (Clinton & Hawkins, p.255).

A referral to a mental health professional and physician may be necessary in Brody’s case. However, for the design and purpose of this project, counseling continues with specific focus on Bruce and Brody’s relationship and grieving support.


A. Now that the counselor has been invited into the care-seeker’s world, continue to follow the distinctive framework in phase two (Liberty University, 2013, F.A.I.T.H. for Phase Two Presentation).

· The purpose of phase two is to develop the care-seeker’s preferred story and solution.

· Describing and formulating a goal is the goal, and the counselor’s chief aim is to collaborate well with the care-seeker (Liberty University F.A.I.T.H. for SBSPC, 2013, p. 1).

· Developing rapport, demonstrating “fit,” and nurturing a collaborative spirit and partnership with the care-seeker are the counselor’s primary roles (Kollar, 2011, p.63).

· Assumptions guiding the counselor are the problem is the problem not the care-seeker, the care-seeker is the expert, and solutions are co-created (Kollar, 2011, p. 63).

· The counselor must continue to align his relating style to the care-seeker and be mindful of the behavioral position (Liberty University, F.A.I.T.H for Phase Two Presentation, 2013).

· “Working toward a desired outcome begins with the use of questions that open up new possibilities” (Kollar, 2011, p.102). Phase two brings a collaborative experience of picturing life without the problem through the skillful use of SBSPC questions (Liberty University, F.A.I.T.H for Phase Two Presentation, 2013). The acronym MECSTAT captures the components of solution-focused questions. Miracle, exceptions, accolades, task, coping, and scaling are questions counselors can employ to help care-seekers continue making forward progress (Greenberg & Ganshorn, 2003, p. 1-2).

· Feedback should consist of presenting the problem, outlining exceptions to the problem, supportive compliments, educative comments, and after session suggestions (Kollar, 2011, p. 140).

Brody’s Counseling Session: Phase Two

Bruce insisted that Brody seek counseling based on his comments to Josh about feeling invisible, unwanted, and pretending to be alive. Brody left session one in a blaming position. While he invited the counselor into his world by asking for help improving his relationship with his father, Brody blames his father for all of the tension and strife between them. Brody does not see himself as part of the solution to improve his relationship with his father. In truth, Brody wants Bruce to be different, and he believes he is waiting on Bruce to change before the relationship can change (Kollar, 2011, p.81).

Because Brody has a S/C relational style he responds to those that are soft spoken and easy going, and he responds best when he feels respected. Because Brody’s type prefers one-on-one relationships, this student-counselor will continue to align her personality with Brody by using people skills and tendency to please. Especially during phase two, when the chief aim is to develop a collaborative partnership with Brody, she will align her relational style by making him feel respected as the expert when formulating a goal (Carbonell, p. 172).

Phase two’s goal is to formulate a goal, and it is Brody’s goal; the counselor’s chief aim is to collaborate well with the care-seeker (Liberty University F.A.I.T.H. for SBSPC, 2013, p.1). Developing a sense of partnership with Brody is imperative because his relational style prefers one-to-one interaction (Carbonell, 2008, p.172). Given that Brody’s personality type does not like to take initiative and he is in a blaming position, she will have to control her tendency to be indecisive, and concentrate on being assertive in making Brody feel secure and aiding him in taking ownership of his goals. Finally, Brody’s personality type is insecure because of a lack of confidence, therefore, this counselor hopes to align her relational style’s enthusiasm and warmth to make Brody feel secure and confident and encourage him to share his great personality (Carbonell, p. 65, 171).

Aligning her relational style with Brody’s will foster a collaborative spirit and partnership. It will develop a sense of fit in the session, and provide an environment that Brody will feel respected and secure. This fosters the best opportunity for Brody to move from a blaming to a willing position.

During phase two, the counselor will address Brody’s blaming position through encouraging feedback, looking for clues when the problem is not occurring, offering supportive compliments, and asking questions to highlight change (Kollar, 2011, pp. 96-102). Taking Brody’s grief and the family tragedy into consideration, employing scaling and managing questions will be most effective to best support change within the intention of the spirit and maintain fit with Brody (Kollar, p.111). Managing questions will help the counselor find exceptions to the problem, draw attention to them and make them meaningful (Kollar, p.112).

Due to Brody’s age and behavioral position, the counselor must have an understanding of passive-aggressive behavior in teenagers. Immature C/S personality types desire security and stability, but when threatened they can act irrational. When they are hurt or confused this personality type can be faultfinding and critical, and when they feel threatened they can be resistant and uneasy (Carbonell, 2008, p.278). Employing the following strategies explained by Kollar (2011) will address the teen challenge and guide Brody from a blaming to a willing position:

· Restructuring: Re-conceptualize Brody’s relational problem with his father as a short-term issue (Kollar, 2011, p.210).

· Reframing: Give positive meaning and understanding to Brody’s difficult behaviors. This suggests a fresh and new way of behaving (Kollar, p.211).

· Constructing Motivation: In order to construct a solution, Brody must be in a willing position. The vision for the future must include motivation to act on it when it is presented (Kollar, p.211).

· Staying on Track: Teens have an emotionally charged view of reality, and the counselor wants to externalize the events by discussing the effects of the events rather than the events. SBSPC strategy will help Brody reconstruct a new possibility with his relationship with his father. Directing Brody’s attention to the effects of confrontation with his father rather than the actual confrontation will limit reinforcing past emotions and reconstruct new effects for positive change (Kollar, p.211).

While Brody entered phase two in a blaming position, he left in a willing position through the work of the Holy Spirit. Brody felt secure and heard during the session. He began to talk about his relationship with his father and the upsetting confrontations and silence that exist between them. Brody elaborated on the comment he made to his brother about feeling like he was losing his father too (Liberty University Case Study: Crossroads, 2012, p. 11). As the counselor was employing managing questions in the interview, Brody had a teary outpouring of emotion. Brody explained his love for his father, his sadness at the loss of his mother and sister. He described a feeling of devastating loneliness and a yearning for a loving relationship with his father. Overwhelmed with grief, Brody expressed that if his relationship with his father did not improve, he did not believe he could cope with the grief of this tragedy. Specifically, the marker that indicated we collaboratively “imagineered” a picture of life without Brody’s problem was when Brody expressed that he was a Christian, he loved God and his Father, and that he knew based on what the Bible teaches that he believed there was hope in Jesus to make things better with his father. He expressed a desire for the counselor to tell him what to do to make things better with his father. The counselor then began to ask follow-up questions that were future-focused. Through these questions, Brody began to envision life without the problem and realized that he would have to make changes, along with his father, to improve their relationship (Kollar, 2011, p. 105). Brody formulated the goal that he wants to develop a closeness and personal relationship with his father similar to the one he had with his mother so he will not feel so lonely and have support while grieving.

During the supportive feedback break, the following portraits were considered: (1) grief; (2) depression; (3) loneliness; and (4) anger. Keeping in mind the stages of grief and the goal of grieving is to find and accept the new normal is important for the counselor to consider when providing feedback to Brody (Clinton & Hawkins, 2009, p.131). Another key thought for the counselor to consider is loneliness which becomes more difficult to handle when it is extensive, as in a death. Emotional separation, which Brody is feeling with his father, can seem unbearable (Clinton & Hawkins, p.151). The following wise counsel would be considered during the feedback portion of the interview to develop the goal:

· Attend his youth group gatherings throughout the week to help with the loneliness that is a healthy part of the grief process and set aside a time each day to spend with God (Clinton & Hawkins, 2009, p.152).

· Remind Brody that grieving is a unique experience that takes time and that the range of emotions and intensity are normal and with time they will subside (Clinton & Hawkins, 2009, p.132).

· Keep a routine and rest (Clinton & Hawkins, p.133).

· Put your thoughts and feelings in writing in a journal (Clinton & Hawkins, p. 152).

· Offer encouragement since Brody is willing to address the problem (Clinton & Hawkins, 20019, p.43).


A. In order to develop and sustain forward progress, the counselor will focus on phase three distinctives of the SBSPC strategy (i.e., Purpose; Goal; Chief Aim; Role/Responsibilities; Guiding Assumptions).

· The purpose of phase three is to clarify and execute an action plan (Liberty University, 2013, F.A.I.T.H. for SBSPC, p.1).

· The goal is clarification of the goal or vision, and the counselor’s chief aim is to execute skills well so that clarification is achieved (Liberty University, 2013, F.A.I.T.H. for SBSPC, p.1).

· The counselor is continuing to build rapport, demonstrate fit, and collaborate with the care-seeker. In addition, the counselor’s chief aim is to support forward progress and actively participate in building hope (Liberty University, 2013, F.A.I.T.H. for SBSPC, p.1).

· Assumptions guiding the counselor in phase three are the following: (1) God is at work in the care-seeker; (2) Complex solutions are not necessary; (3) Identifying exceptions to the problems help create solutions; (4) Small change leads to big change; (5) The care-seeker chooses the goal and collaborates with the counselor to achieve it (Kollar, 2011, p. 85).

· “Clarification depicts the process for describing the counselee’s initial vision or goal for a desired outcome or solution” (Kollar, 2011, p.123). Clarification continues to confirm that SBSPC is outcome focused. The counselor will utilize his skillset to assist the care-seeker to clarify the goal by reducing it into bite-sized action steps creating the roadmap for goal achievement (Kollar, p. 123).

· The skillful use of follow-up questions directs clarification. Describing the goal by focusing on what needs changed or encouraging the care-seeker to think about what the changed life will look like begins the process of clarification. Follow-up questions must initiate a pattern for future success and specifically clarify the desired outcome. In Brody’s case, clarification for goal description will result from answering follow-up questions that outline a vision for how he will know when he reaches his goal and what his relationship with his father will look like (Kollar, p.124-126).

· Taking the care-seeker’s goal and reducing into small, specific, appropriate, reasonable, interpersonal, and collaborative action steps by the use of follow-up questions gets to the root of crafting and clarifying a goal. Questions used for clarification should create a hopeful depiction, seek specification, describe personal action, empower, create a track, and scale the goal. This is how the goal breaks down into smaller parts creating the roadmap for success (Kollar, p.128-134).

· Cultivating and maintaining progress are the ideas for phase three. Staying close to the care-seeker, capturing and consolidating forward progress, and keeping it moving are the key concepts of phase three (Liberty University, 2013, F.A.I.T.H. for Phase Three Presentation).

Brody’s Counseling Session: Phase Three

The counselor will utilize managing questions, future-focused questions, and scaling questions to aide Brody in clarification (Kollar, 2011, p. 134-138). This portion of the SBSPC strategy will require control of this student’s I/S personality patterns. Controlling the tendency to relate to others rather than tackling difficult tasks, or organizing her time to better serve, is essential for clarification to be accomplished (Carbonell, 2008, p.64). Clarification requires the methodical use of follow-up questions to clarify the goal (Kollar, 2011, p.123). Therefore, she will have to control this personality pattern by being decisive with her use of follow-up questions and assertive with the expectation of Brody being the expert. Aligning with Brody in phase three will require control of her reliance on social skills and focus on being more organized during the session (Carbonell, 2008, p.64).

Not only will this counselor, in general, have to control certain aspects of her I/Sness, she must also be cognizant of aligning I/Sness with Brody’s C/Sness in order maintain rapport, demonstrate fit, and ensure the success of clarification in phase three. Clarification requires work on Brody’s behalf. He will have to describe and clarify his goal, as well as, outline specific tasks that lead to a solution (i.e., with the assistance of the counselor; Kollar, 2011, p. 138). Brody’s tendency to be patient with people and his tendency to take his time to work hard and accomplish difficult tasks will bode well during clarification of phase three. Therefore, relational style alignment will continue by controlling the tendency to be too relational rather than task-oriented and focus on creating task-oriented situations for Brody. While Brody often reverts to being passive and quiet, the counselor will focus on coming alongside of Brody to take a risk, embrace change, and build his confidence (Carbonell, 2008, p. 63, 170-171).

Brody’s C/S personality type presents a challenge in phase three. His goal is to take the necessary steps to improve his relationship with his father. However, Brody has a tendency to accept the status quo, be a peacekeeper, and avoid confrontation with his tendency to be submissive; as a result, he finds himself being intimidated by Bruce’s Dness (Carbonell, 2008, p.171). To address this challenge, the counselor will have to offer a plethora of supportive compliments to Brody, especially pointing out Brody’s strengths and encourage positive action. Speaking with Bruce about complimenting Brody and encouraging him to set aside time each day to converse with Brody about his daily interactions will create opportunities for Brody to feel secure, heard, and stable enough to be calm when challenged (Carbonell, p.171). These actions are tailored to Brody’s C/S personality pattern and will support forward progress.

During the supportive feedback break the counselor should reflect upon creating a workable solution based on the goal description and information gained in clarification (Kollar, 2011, p.140). During the break the counselor should gather information about the care-seeker’s emotional state from the presenting problem and then more fully develop the exceptions to the problem. The counselor should then use the exceptions to organize feedback that supports positive actions, goals, and tasks (Kollar, p.142). In Brody’s situation, supportive compliments, educative comments, and after-session suggestions must take into consideration portraits of grief, death, anger, depression, and loneliness (Clinton & Hawkins, 2009, p. 39, 60, 73, 130, 150). The following wise counsel should be considered during the feedback portion of the counseling interview:

· “Provide plenty of biblical images of hope, heaven, and resurrection, but avoid being glib or superficial” (Clinton & Hawkins, 2009, p.62).

· Help Brody understand that recovery will come as he learns to cope with the changes and new dynamics of daily life. His “normal” will not return but there is hope in recovery (Clinton & Hawkins, 2009, p. 63).

· Assure Brody that anger is not sinning, but it must be dealt with in constructive ways.

· Emphasize the importance of expressing his anger and not allowing it to result in bitterness or hostility (Clinton & Hawkins, 2009, p. 43).

· Continue to rule out suicidal thoughts and encourage healthy habits to combat depressions symptoms such as lack of sleep and loss of appetite (Clinton & Hawkins, 2009, p.77).

· Compliment Brody on the steps he took to combat loneliness from the last session. Reinforce that loneliness is a healthy part of the grieving process. Encourage him to spend time alone with God daily and draw closer to God (Clinton & Hawkins, 2009, p. 152).

· The following are action steps and biblical insight that I would include in after-session suggestions with Brody:

· Attend his youth group gatherings throughout the week to help with the loneliness that is a healthy part of the grief process and set aside a time each day to spend with God (Clinton & Hawkins, 2009, p.152).

· Keep a routine and rest (Clinton & Hawkins, p.133).

· Put your thoughts and feelings in writing in a journal; include in the journal how you feel when things are going well between Brody and Bruce (Clinton & Hawkins, p. 152).

· Encourage Brody to use his music to focus on healing. When he begins to think of “if onlys” switch the focus to healing (Clinton & Hawkins, 2009, p. 134).

· Seek to make a meaningful connection to his father daily through conversation or spending time together doing an activity they both enjoy or volunteer together (Clinton & Hawkins, 2009, p. 153)

· Isaiah 41:10 God reminds us he is with us always, and holding us with his righteous right hand.

· Revelation 21:4 A better time and place is described where there is no grief and loss, and this helps to develop a hopeful perspective (Clinton & Hawkins, 2009, p.135).

· Psalm 42:5 This will encourage Brody to trust God and nurture his personal relationship with Christ (Clinton & Hawkins, 2009, p. 78).

· Ephesians 4:26-27 Anger can promote positive change when handled in the right ways (Clinton & Hawkins, 2009, p.45).


A. Being proactive with efforts to connect well is imperative in the final session. Phase four includes the same distinctives as each of the other phase. However, the counselor must prepare resources to support the care-seeker a part from the counseling sessions (Liberty University, 2013, F.A.I.T.H. for SBSPC, p.2).

· The purpose of phase four is to connect the care-seeker to the community (Liberty University, 2013, F.A.I.T.H. for SBSPC, p.2).

· To goal is to connect well with the community (Liberty University, 2013, F.A.I.T.H. for SBSPC, p.2).

· The counselor’s chief aim is to collect the necessary, appropriate resources to connect the care-seeker well (Liberty University, 2013, F.A.I.T.H. for SBSPC, p.2).

· The counselor’s role/responsibility is to reinforce a commitment to change by providing supportive feedback and arranging accountability through bible study, small groups, and pastoral care (Liberty University, 2013, F.A.I.T.H. for SBSPC, p.2).

· Small group connection supports the change process (Liberty University, 2013, F.A.I.T.H. for SBSPC, p.2).

· The following guiding assumptions are evident in phase four: (1) “The counselee is always changing” (Kollar, 2011, p. 70-72); (2) “God is always active in the counselee.” (Kollar, p.85).

· The scriptures give us hope and encouragement for phase four. They teach us to learn from what is written and be encouraged. The scriptures give us hope (Romans 15:14 NASB). When supporting change and connecting the care-seeker to the community small group ministries counselors surround the care-seekers with truth. When Christians meet together they should stimulate and encourage one another to love and do good deeds and building up the body of Christ (Hebrews 10:24-5; Ephesians 4:11-16). It’s these truths that make phase four so important. Supporting a context of change through the hope of Jesus Christ in a network of supporting Christians is successful disengagement (Liberty University, 2013, F.A.I.T.H. for SBSPC, p.2).

· It is important for the counselor to keep in mind when preparing resources to support change for the care-seeker that the body of Christ best supports change (Kollar, 2011, p. 20).

· When connecting a care-seeker to a small group it should be a challenging, rewarding, and biblical group (Dempsey, Small Group Leadership Training, p.6).Small groups should honor God by making an eternal difference in peoples’ lives. They help people connect relationally so they can be disciple, developed and cared for (Dempsey, Small Group Leadership Training, p.9).

Brody’s Counseling Session: Phase Four

In the final session with Brody, the counselor began the session similar to phases two and three. The counselor employed active listening skills to highlight, support, and consolidate gains while pointing out change with an enthusiastic and complimentary attitude. Clarification and the skillful use of future-focused, managing and scaling questions assisted Brody in consolidating his progress (Kollar, 2011, p.157. During the feedback, the counselor highlighted exceptions to the problem between Brody and Bruce’s relationship, complimented Brody on his willingness to complete tasks, and continued to offer compliments and praise for Brody’s positive actions. The counselor provided community resources for teenage grief support, small group ministry at Brody’s church, and set up pastoral care to successfully disengage Brody from counseling and foster a successful transition to accountability and staying on track (Liberty University, 2013, F.A.I.T.H. for SBSPC, p. 2).


“Pastors are called to be active and wise shepherds to a wide range of flawed and fallen human beings.” (Johnson & Johnson, 2000, p. 1). Pastors work hard to meet their flocks where they are, and equipping pastors to counsel at a professional level through a solution-based, short-term strategy best serves care-seekers (Johnson & Johnson, p.4; Kollar, 2011, p. 20). The solution-based, short-term pastoral counseling strategy utilizes a collaborative methodology to align with God’s intentions (Kollar, p. 57). It allows the care-seeker to take ownership and get back on track (p.15). As revealed through the distinctive features in each phase of the SBSPC strategy, when a problem is clearly understood the counselee and counselor can easily collaborate to develop a goal, engage a plan of action to move out from the problem and into a future without the problem (Liberty University, 2013, F.A.I.T.H. for SBSPC, p. 3).

In conclusion, Brody’s counseling scenario is one example of the powerful impact the SBSPC strategy has in helping a care-seeker get back on track. This strategy operates under the authority of the Word of God and enters into the work of the Spirit as He is forming the care-seeker’s unique identity (Kollar, 2011, p. 57). By focusing on exceptions to problems, highlighting change, viewing the care-seeker as the expert, cocreating solutions, and devising an action plan to move toward a life without the problem the SBSPC strategy rejects the status quo of a problem-focused paradigm. Consolidating change and connecting the care-seeker to a network of support following short-term care paves a way for success (Liberty University, 2013, F.A.I.T.H. of SBSPC p. 2). Indeed, this student-counselor became a vessel God used to accomplish His will and bear kingdom fruit (Clinton & Hawkins, 2009, p.10). To God’s glory, the counselor’s hallmark purpose governed her thoughts, decisions, and relational style in a way that seemed to help Brody remember Jesus was present in the counseling experience.


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and emotional issues. Grand Rapids, MI: Baker Books.

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on September 5, 2013, from

Dempsey, R. Small group leadership training. Liberty Baptist Theological Seminary. Retrieved

on October 9, 2013, from Liberty University Blackboard PACO 500

Information Centre. Greenberg, G., & Ganshorn, K. 2003. Solution-focused therapy: a solution d

driven model for change. Retrieved on October 8, 2013, from Liberty University

Blackboard PACO 500

Johnson W. B., & Johnson W. L. (2000). The pastor’s guide to psychological disorder and

treatments: A quick and easy reference source to understanding mental health disorders!

New York: The Haworth Press.

Kollar, C. (2011). Solution-focused pastoral counseling: and effective short-term approach

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Final Project Grading Rubric


Points Possible

Points Earned

Paper Content & Organization

· Cover sheet, Abstract, Table of Contents, References, Grading Rubric, and correct file name are included.

· Annotated outline presented with appropriate headings and organizational clarity.

· Abstract included: clearly identified student’s relational style, hallmark purpose for life, and soul-care context; pre-determined care-seeker, relational style, presenting behavioral position and problem/issue.

· Introduction: clearly presented a rationale for project, overview of SBSPC strategy, its strengths & suitability for a specific soul-care context; and described design and objectives accomplished.


Counseling Content & Organization

· All four phases of SBSPC strategy are identified with sufficient organizational clarity and logical flow in annotated outline format.

· Satisfactory presentation of SBSPC distinctive features and skills

· Major points are primarily supported from the readings with citations, good examples (pertinent personal or conceptual examples are acceptable), and thoughtful analysis (considering assumptions, analyzing implications, presenting clear rationales).

· Where appropriate, the paper integrates spiritual formation truths, insights, and techniques.


Introduction/Conclusion Content & Research Expectations

· A clear & convincing “So what?” is presented.

· Important ideas are reinforced, including a subject matter “take away.”

· Presentations and handouts are utilized and cited.

· At least 2 citations per 5 required texts (10) and DISC assessment (2)

· Body of paper does not exceed 14 pages.


Readability and current APA Guidelines

· Spelling and grammar are correct.

· Sentences are complete, clear, and concise.

· Annotations contain appropriately varied sentence structures, double-spaced, and typed in 12 pt Times New Roman font.

· In-text citations and references used appropriately and correctly.




Instructor’s Comments

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