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M.Div, M.Ed, LPCC, NCC
- Masters of Divinity
- Masters of Education
- Licensed Professional Counselor Candidate
- Nationally Certified Counselor
Philosophy and Therapeutic Approach
There is “nothing that can separate us from the love of God.” However, there are times in our lives when we feel separated from God’s loving presence and thus feel void of peace, joy, worth, and even the loving presence of others in our lives. I recognize that these feelings of distance from God, others, and even from self are difficult to endure, however, there is both hope and there is help. During these times, please know that you are not alone, for God has called me to walk alongside you, honoring you and encouraging you along your journey to a place of greater peace and wholeness with yourself and others.
Each therapeutic encounter is an opportunity to experience the power and presence of God. In order to experience this transformative reality, I invite clients to bring their unique selves to therapy. I value and respect the personalities, perspectives, experiences, and beliefs of each client. As your therapist, my commitment is to provide a safe, non-judgmental, and empowering space where clinical expertise, pastoral skills, and academic research are offered as tools for personal growth and transformation.
What to Expect in Therapy
I recognize that choosing to begin therapy can be a difficult decision to make. So, I’d like to applaud you for taking that initial step. As your therapist, I believe that it is important to meet you where you are and journey with you at your own pace. Along this journey, we will engage in personal exploration, discovery, insight, and growth.
I do not take your willingness to invite me along this journey with you lightly. From our very first encounter I will work to foster a warm, gracious, trusting, and safe client-therapist relationship that is aimed at cultivating a therapeutic space where you feel comfortable with sharing and fully engaging in the therapeutic process. Through the successes and the inevitable challenges that will arise along the journey, rest assured that I will be present–listening, encouraging, and supporting you.
Our first few sessions will serve as an opportunity to get to know each other, answer any preliminary questions that you may have about therapy, and ensure that we are a good fit. In addition, we will employ this time as space for you to give voice to matters that are important to you as we collaborate in the development of your therapeutic goals. From there, our journey begins towards a destination of life that is “full of joy, peace, and abounding in hope” (Romans 15:3).
I want you to know that I value your individual spiritual journey. While the tenets of my Christian faith, love, joy, grace, peace, forgiveness, kindness, etc., permeate my therapeutic approach to therapy, I will not impose my ideologies upon you. To the degree that you are comfortable with incorporating faith into the therapeutic process, we will make space for it. If you would like, I will gladly incorporate prayer, scripture, and spiritual practices into our sessions.
Personal Qualifications and Experience
For as long as I can remember I’ve always had a heart for people, desiring to see all people live into their best-created selves. Even before becoming Christian, others would note my natural inclination towards empathy and compassion for others. I was often the one who friends and family confided in and sought for words of advice during times of adversity, opportunity, or uncertainty.
However, my official journey in becoming a counselor began when I acknowledged my call to ministry in 2004. At the time, I recognized that God was summoning me into a life of intentional service to Him but I did not know exactly to which particular area of ministry I was being called. My desire to learn more of God and His Word led me to Duke University. While at Duke Divinity School I met and married my husband and became the wife of a pastor. My new identity as a wife, in particular a pastor’s wife, in combination with feelings of shame and guilt stemming from my family of origin led me to seek out counseling through the university. Although my counseling sessions at the university aided me in conceptualizing my presenting issues in healthier ways, those sessions did not allow me to incorporate my faith into my therapeutic process. In addition, the new dynamics of my identity as the spouse of a pastor provided me with the opportunity to counsel with a multitude of individuals, couples, singles, children, and families who were in need of counseling that extended beyond traditional pastoral care.
Upon graduating with my Masters of Divinity from Duke University, my heart for people led me along a seven-year professional journey of providing support services in community mental health agencies working with children, adults, and families impacted by psychological, emotional, behavioral, and substance abuse disorders. My work as a community support service provider contributed to my growing passion to serve others through counseling. In 2012, I received a Masters of Education in Clinical Mental Health Counseling from North Carolina State University and continued my work in serving community agencies and my local church as a counselor. The journey that began for me in my youth that matriculated through Duke Divinity School in my wholehearted search for God culminated with me finding God, myself, and my calling to counseling. (Jeremiah 29:13)
My Christian faith is the cornerstone of my life. My relationship with God is the helm from which every good and perfect gift of my life stems and the reason for my being and serving others. I believe that St. Augustine says it best when he says “God is the life of the life of my soul.”
I love spending time with my family! My husband is a pastor and we have been married and serving in ministry for over 13 years. We have 4 joyfully energetic children under the age of 10. My family moved from Durham, North Carolina to Denver, Colorado in 2013 for my husband’s second pastorate. As a family we enjoy worshipping together, biking, board games, and watching movies (although I’m usually asleep before it ends ☺).
My personal interests are traveling, reading, singing, and amateur gardening.
but in the end, it’s going to be a lot better and a lot bigger” -Elisabeth Elliot
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