After years of biblical training, an extensive education on the brain and how it works, and a wealth of coursework to become a counselor, Pamela Poteat sought God’s wisdom on doing biblical counseling His way. He immediately took her to His words to Peter in John 21:15-17: “Peter, do you love me? Feed my lambs.”
Pamela’s reply was another question: “Lord, I’m a counselor. How do I feed your sheep?”
His reply took her to II Peter 1:7, assuring her that God has truly given us “everything we need pertaining to life and godliness.” Therefore, at Bridging the Gap Counseling and Educational Services, we counsel directly from His Word. Our approach is Christ-centered, comprehensive, compassionate, and focused (not just on stabilization, but) on healing.
With the manifold experiences God has woven in through the threads of our lives, along with extensive training, our counselor is theologically, biblically, and relationally qualified to love, comfort, and challenge the clients whom God has placed in our care.
With a combined experience of adoption and foster care we are able to draw from personal knowledge on how to apply both Trauma Based Relational Intervention and Trauma Focused Cognitive Based Therapy in our biblical counseling. We have worked with people of all ages who have experienced trauma, have trauma-based issues, and/or PTSD.
Counseling Children and Teens:
Biblical counseling for this age group is all about relationship. Using games, story-telling, icons, and pictures in our many stabilizing and healing activities gives each child/teen voice so s/he is able to tell his/her story. Our counselor shows an acceptance for the many emotions and issues that present themselves during the course of the counseling journey, without encouraging sin to continue or even increase. Our counselor works with the parents to come alongside in this journey toward freedom by teaching them Therapeutic Parenting; healing then becomes a family affair.
Children and teens present with unique issues that must be handled with love and skill by the biblical counselor. Pamela has a developed a menu of effective strategies to deal with anger, anxiety, depression, relationship issues, and family issues. If these issues are impacting the child/teen’s ability to learn, then Terry steps in with her expertise. The dual nature of these applications for daily life give parents and their offspring hope and allow them to see a light at the end of a dark tunnel.
God provides the knowledge for an organized plan of healing, no matter what the struggle of the individual or family. His goal is for each person to come “reason together” with Him (Isaiah 1:18), recognize his Lordship, and honor Him with his/her life.
Life is filled with challenges that often require an outside expert who approaches counseling from a biblical perspective. Anyone (in any life stage) can find themselves overwhelmed with the enormity of the issues in their lives. Even strong Christians need a fresh biblical perspective when they feel the weight of difficult circumstances in their life. Bridging the Gap Counseling and Educational Services Christ-centered methodology includes Cognitive Based Therapy and Trust Based Relational Intervention, as well as scripture memorization and application, journaling, and a recovery plan customized to meet the needs of each individual.
There are many pressures and expectations that can be difficult to navigate in the context of marriage. Often as two people come together, they bring a set of their own issues, philosophies, parenting styles, etc. With two sets of expectations and differing opinions, one can see why marriages often struggle to become the picture of what marriage was designed by God to be. Our counselor seeks to bring about understanding, ownership, and restoration to each couple through the use of scripture and biblical truth.
The family unit in modern society is becoming increasingly complicated. In addition to the "traditional" family, there are single parent families, blended families, grandparents who are parenting, step children, half brothers and sisters, adopted children, foster children, and the list goes on. In all these units, we are called to glorify Christ. Is the path of peace with these complicated relationships even possible? Our only hope is the wisdom of our Lord and Savior. No family will ever be perfect, but Jesus only gives commands that can be followed. Bridging the Gap Counseling and Educational Services offers hope for families to overcome these struggles in a godly manner using many of the same strategies that succeed with individuals.
Therapeutic Parenting -
In today’s world of cyber bullying, school shootings, trauma in the neighborhoods, teen suicides, and school failure, what is a parent to do? How do they become the parent that can reach children and teens that appear to be “unreachable”? They become therapeutic parents. This type of parenting means they raise their children in a way that creates a safe, healing environment—an environment that sets their children up for many more successes than the failures with which they have become so familiar.
Parents train themselves to look for:
Signs of wear and tear in their children.
Pathways that lead their children to success.
Moments to bond as a family.
Opportunities to deal with deeper issues beyond the anger, anxiety, and/or depression.
Using the tool of therapeutic parenting, parents learn how to keep calm and look at the trigger for the behavior instead of reacting to the behavior itself. While the parents are working on their parenting skills, they are helping their children to stabilize and heal from the trauma in their lives.