Working with High Conflict Couples: Assessing for Abusive Elements

By DeVine Interventions | January 12, 2022

Working with high conflict couples presents unique challenges that frustrate and confuse even experienced counselors. We can work for months, even years, without seeing improvement. And, we can miss some crucial diagnostic components if we are not mindful of what to look for. 

High conflict couples experience frequent fighting that may threaten their connection and happiness. In a destructive/abusive marriage, fighting threatens the sanity and safety of the people within the marriage. 

The Danger of Comparison

By DeVine Interventions | January 5, 2022

Comparison is a common human struggle. We look to those around us to assess whether we are ok, not ok—or really not ok. Perhaps we thought we were ok until we opened up Facebook or Instagram and saw the beautiful new addition someone put on their home, or the all-inclusive vacation they were enjoying.

4 Thieves That Want to Rob You of God’s Joy

By DeVine Interventions | December 29, 2021

Unmask these joy stealers so they don’t keep you from living in God’s joy, especially during difficult times

The season I was in felt scarred. My daughter was diagnosed with breast cancer. My son was trapped in an addiction. And I discovered my cancer had returned.

I knew what the Bible said about the joy of the Lord being our strength (Nehemiah 8:10) and I needed to “choose joy.” The problem: I was reaching for joy with all my might, but it kept eluding me.

Having Heroes Helps

By DeVine Interventions | December 22, 2021

The best counselors are always on the lookout for new blogs, podcasts, audio lectures, booklets, and books to recommend to counselees. So much has been written and said concerning typical and even atypical counseling problems. We start with the Bible, of course, the primary resource. It points us to the divine power which “has granted to us all things that pertain to life and godliness” (2 Pet. 1:3).

Why Diets Don’t Work: Satisfying Your Food Cravings the Healthy Way

By DeVine Interventions | December 15, 2021

It’s not entirely true that diets don’t work. Plenty of people lose weight on diets. They can list all the times they followed some type of weight loss plan—low carb, low fat, Keto, Medifast®, weight loss surgery, intermittent fasting, fruit only—and lost 10, 20, and even 50 pounds. Although some people found success dieting when they were younger, as life progressed with increased stressors or disappointments from unmet weight-loss goals, the desire to even attempt dieting diminished.

All of Our Nightmares Will Become Untrue

By DeVine Interventions | December 8, 2021

This past year, my seven-year-old son has been plagued by nightmares. Though he had experienced them many times before, they increased in regularity and we noticed him becoming anxious as bedtime approached. He became fixated on my prayers for good dreams, re-checking if I had already prayed, insisting that I do it a certain way—only when he was in bed—and even posing that these prayers might be causing more nightmares.

Male Abuse in Marriage? Why an Abusive Wife Is No Laughing Matter

By DeVine Interventions | December 1, 2021

Can men experience abuse in marriage? Why is it so hard to see a man as a victim of abuse?

For professional golfer Lucas Glover, abuse included being verbally attacked by his wife, Krista, for not proceeding to the next round of a golf tournament. Following a 2018 altercation involving Glover and his mother, Krista was arrested and charged with domestic battery. Glover admitted in the police report that this wasn’t a rare occurrence and that his wife would often say things like “You’re such a loser” or “You better win or the kids and I will leave you and you will never see us again.”

Should Love Really Cover Over a Multitude of Sins?

By DeVine Interventions | November 24, 2021

It’s a familiar phrase: love covers over a multitude of sins (1 Pet. 4:8). But how does it sit with the biblical counseling community?

To some, biblical counseling seems obsessed with sin. As though finding, exposing, and naming sin and then bringing people to repentance from sin was the full gamut of the biblical counseling enterprise. From that perspective, every biblical counseling conversation is nothing more than a relentless kind of sin hunt.

Giving Up Control

By DeVine Interventions | November 18, 2021

The prophet Isaiah proclaims to God that “we are the clay, You are the potter; we are all the work of Your hand” (Isa. 64:8). I envision myself on a potter’s wheel with God trying to shape me into something magnificent. However, because I can’t see what He is making and I don’t enjoy the shaping process, I am like clay that somehow manages to climb off the wheel. In doing that, I become just a blob of clay on the table. And yet, I then complain about the fact that I am a blob. And of course, I blame God.

We are encouraged to consider it joy when we face trials because they actually test our faith, which produces perseverance, which in turn produces character, which leads to hope.

In Defense of Something Close to Venting

By DeVine Interventions | November 10, 2021

What do you think of when you hear someone use the word “venting?” I’m sure just about all of us have had the experience of stopping mid-sentence in a conversation and saying something like: “I’m sorry for venting” or “I know I’m just venting.” Statements like this capture the tension we find ourselves trying to navigate as Christians. We have a complicated relationship with expressing ourselves this way. On the one hand, it feels instinctual and necessary to be able to speak freely and unfiltered about our disappointments and frustrations. On the other hand, we are acutely aware that our verbal expressions can easily go awry and we typically need to apologize for doing it.

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