- Comprehensive, integrated and Scripture consistent model for short-term marriage counseling
- Techniques and principles throroughly tested in counseling hundreds of couples
- Approach to marriage counseling which takes into account all levels (individual, couple and family) and life stages
- Help for counselors on assessment, goal-setting and intervention
- Appendix which summarizes and critiques five popular approaches to marriage counseling
Marriages are in trouble today. That is clear. Effective mothods of combating this trend are less evident. Counselors, pastors and social workers need more than mere theories or mere moralizing. They need a practical and comprehensive model for understanding couples and their problems. They need a throughly Christian perspective that is biblical, compassionate and human.
Everett Worthington provides this in an integrated, biblically based theory of marriage and marriage therapy with analysis at three levels: the individual, the couple and the family. The model he has constructed, with techniques drawn from the major psychological schools, is standard enough to guide counselors in actual interventions and powerful enough to produce change.
A thoroughgoing overview of the assessment process includes practical, workable guidelines for: creating realistic, mutually-agreeable goals for counselor and clients; estimating the number of sessions needed to reach those goals; and planning the actual assessment, intervention and termination sessions.
Next Worthington offers specific techniques for enhancing cooperative change, intimacy, communication, conflict resolution and forgiveness within the marriage. But keeping couples from slipping back into old patterns is one of the counselor's most difficult tasks. So Worthington concludes with suggestions for solidifying change and effectively concluding the counseling relationship.
Here is a text that will be a standard for counselors, pastors and mental health professionals in the years to come.
About the Author
Everett L. Worthington Jr. (Ph.D., University of Missouri) is professor of psychology at Virginia Commonwealth University. A licensed clinical psychologist, he serves as director of VCU's Marital Assessment, Therapy and Enrichment Center (MATE) and served as executive director of the Templeton Foundation's Campaign for Forgiveness Research. He has published more than 200 articles and papers on marriage, family and forgiveness in a wide variety of journals and magazines. He is the author of many books, including Forgiving and Reconciling, To Forgive Is Human, and Hope-Focused Marriage Counseling.