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negative about psychologists?

28-10-2011 - Posted by Andre Piet

“Often times you are so negative about psychology and psychotherapy, or is it just me?”, said the young man, referring to various comments in speeches and studies on GoedBericht.nl. I thought for a moment and then said: “I can see that it sometimes comes across that way, yes.” “Is that not true, then?”, he continued to ask. “Well, what I preach,” I replied, “is that no psychology can even stand in the shade of what the Good News is able to accomplish in a man. It is the power of God for everyone who believes, it is written. That is always greatly underestimated.” “But I know believers who are depressed or have other psychological problems,” he responded critically. “What are they doing wrong?” “What they are doing wrong is not the issue,” I replied. “Besides, each case is another story. One thing is certain: Evangel means: good news, joyful message. And what does a joyful message do, but it makes a man happy?! It is a message that gives happiness and peace, expectation and strength. This is not only my own experience; I see it, thanks to God, also in many others.” “But why is it that serious Christians, often times, do not experience this?” he asked. “I think,” I said hesitantly, “that, mainly this is so, because what is taken to be the Evangel, all too often is not an Evangel at all.” “Go ahead”, said the nice young man, indignantly, “that’s quite an accusation.” “Well, it’s more a conclusion,” I said. “When the Evangel (in the true sense of the word) is told, then people learn who GOD is, what He has done, what He does, and what He will do, as yet. That makes a man happy, without fail. But…” The young man interrupted me and asked, “Are you saying that one who is depressed, is not believing correctly?” “No,” I said shaking my head, “because then the ball is still in man’s court; and it means one must be happy… it is given you something to do: be happy on command. This is, of course, not how it works. The tragedy of this approach is that someone, to begin with, is not happy… and then, consequently, must feel himself to be guilty about this, as well! That is doubly sad and depressing.” “But that’s what you actually teach,” he protested. “No,” I said resolutely, “I never proclaim that a man should be happy. What I preach is that the Evangel is a happy-making message; not a happiness-demanding message. That’s a big difference, I think!” “OK,” said my interviewer, slowly. Then suddenly: “Actually, what you teach is also a prosperity-evangel!” “Is it?” I asked, laughing, and then: “I do not believe in a gospel of prosperity, but in a gospel of well-being. No fat wallet and nice cars, but joy, peace and expectation… in abundance, even! That is what really counts, is it not?” ——————————— translation: Peter Feddema