Summary: Discover the benefits that Jesus offers when we allow him to be our divine counselor.
There are four weeks between now and Christmas. During these four weeks I am going to be using one verse of scripture to guide our thoughts. The verse is Is. 9:6. Look at the verse. “For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us; And the government will rest on His shoulders; And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace. ” (Is. 9:6 NASV) Jesus is identified by four titles in this verse. I want to take one title each week and consider its meaning as we move toward Christmas.
The first title is Wonderful Counselor. I went to Webster for insight about this term. The dictionary tells us a counselor is someone who counsels. Duh! That definition makes me feel like I am going around in circles. More specifically a counselor is someone who advises. This person will help you sort through issues in your life. Sometimes that may not be pleasant but it is for your own good.
Joke: A counselor from a seventh grade camp was talking with Scott, a twelve year old boy, about Scott’s experience with ’snuff’ the night before. Two of Scott’s friends enticed him to take a dip. The snuff made the boys really sick. The Counselor asked Scott what he thought about the whole experience. Scott replied, "I won’t ever try it again and I’ve already told God I’m sorry, but please don’t tell my teacher Mr. Johnston." The counselor informed Scott that God already knew what he had done. The counselor asked the difference between God’s knowing and Mr Johnston (the teacher) knowing?" Scott explained, "God won’t tell my parents."
(Contributed to Sermon Central by David Elvery) A counselor will help you sort through things.
Over the years Judy and I have been blessed to have two wonderful friends who were Christian counselors. These men helped us through some challenging times. They helped us walk through Judy’s depression so that she has been made whole. They helped me walk through a period of burn out and helped me stay in the ministry. These men offered encouragement, affirmation, challenge and support when we desperately needed it.
Let me offer a word of encouragement. If any of you are struggling with marital problems, emotional problems (such as depression, burn out or grief), financial problems or other problems you cannot overcome, don’t suffer alone. There are a lot of wonderful Christian counselors out there who can help you find wholeness and healing. Some people act like it is a sin to go to a counselor when you are struggling. The worst thing you can do is to struggle alone when there are people available who can help.
What I wish to do today is amplify the positive benefits Jesus brings into our lives when we allow Him to be a counselor to us. I want to take these benefits and turn them like a shining jewel so that all of us might enjoy the beauty of Jesus. What are the benefits we get from a counselor?
1. The first benefit that Jesus, our Wonderful Counselor, provides is a compassionate friend. When you go to a Godly counselor you will be assured of several things. You will be assured that what you say is kept in strictest confidence. You will be assured that the counselor will understand and support you no matter what you may say. You will be assured that the counselor has your highest good in mind.
Jesus listens to our hurts and pains because he understands. He created us and he understands the deepest needs of our hearts. There is a verse in Hebrews that speaks to this point. “For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tested in every way as we are yet without sin.” (HCSB)
Illustration: We have a creature in our homes that is called man’s best friend. The creature is the dog. Why do we call a dog man’s best friend? I believe it is because your dog is always eager to see you. It does not matter the kind of day you have experienced. It does not matter the kind of mood you are in. It does not matter how you feel. It does not matter what your hair looks like. Your dog is always glad to see you. If dogs were eternal that would be a partial answer to man’s needs but they are not. Jesus is the only eternal friend. Because of this we need his support. We need Him to be our counselor. Jesus is a compassionate friend who loves us unconditionally. Unconditional love is such a hard thing to find.
Illustration: Pastor Lee Strobel shares this account: