Many come for counseling who have never been to a counselor before. They have problems, probably serious ones, or they wouldn’t have come. It’s a fearful experience for many such persons. They may have difficulty, but they are genuinely seeking help. For others, however, it’s a time to air some dirty linen in order to punish a spouse. For still others, it’s an opportunity to put somebody else on the spot: “I’ll drag him out on the carpet in front of the preacher.” You are considered a weapon in their hands.
Of course, there are any number of other ways in which people arrive. But that is the point. Don’t assume that everyone who shows up on your counseling doorstep really wants counsel. It will be important early on to determine whether or not your “counselee” is a true counselee or not. How do you do so?
You can find out in several ways but, perhaps, the surest way to be sure (sure!) is to give homework that’s based on what they tell you. If a counselee isn’t a valid counselee he will probably
balk at the homework (the most common response), or
merely give it a lick and a promise.
In all cases where homework is rejected or isn’t done with any earnestness, check to see if this is one of those instances where counseling wasn’t your counselee’s object anyway.
This very brief note is just that-something to take note of—that’s all. Hope it helps the next time you encounter an insincere counselee. Perhaps, by pointing out his ugly goal you can bring him to repentance and turn him into a genuine counselee after all.