Grace Equip Counseling Certification

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Through the Grace Equip ministry, Grace Community Church is a training center in biblical counseling. The biblical counseling certification is approved by Grace Church and is not affiliated with any other outside organization. This certification can be used to become an official counselor at Grace Community Church and as a general tool for one’s spiritual life.

The Grace Equip certification includes a thorough curriculum that equips individuals to counsel oneself, others and even serve in an official capacity in the church. The program is rigorous, but attainable by even the busiest person. The biblical counseling certification process is broken down into the following phases and can be completed over the course of two years.

  • Phase 1: Learning Phase: curriculum training, assigned reading, and counseling observations
  • Phase 2: Written Exams Phase: theological and practical counseling exams
  • Phase 3: Supervision Phase: 30 hours of supervised counseling

Phase 1 includes classroom lectures that cover the full range of counseling training. This is done in three individual twelve-week courses over the course of one year.

Phase 2 includes course work which consists of theological and practical counseling exams. Phase 2 can be done alongside phase 1 and be completed in one year. Study guides/helps are provided to assist the student.

Phase 3 consists of supervised counseling. This is where the student gets hands on counseling training with the supervision of the pastoral staff. This can be completed over the course of one year following phase 1 and 2 totaling two years for certification.

Who can be certified?

All Christians who desire to increase in their knowledge and understanding of biblical truth and exercise their God given responsibility to care for others. Only members can function as official counselors for Grace Community Church.

Why biblical counseling?

Counseling is a form of showing care to others, something all Christians are called to do. Although saved by grace, we still sin and struggle through this fallen world. The church, through each individual, is designed to edify, bare each other’s burdens and help one another glorify Christ with their lives. Biblical counseling helps accomplish this.

Training in biblical counseling equips the Christian to care for others by studying the many ways sin effects our lives and the solutions that exist all throughout the Bible. It teaches the counselor to show Christlike love and support in a way that can help others through their difficulties. This is something all Christians should see as valuable and useful in everyday life and fellowship.

Phase 1 - Learning Phase

Registration opens one month before each course begins.

Discipleship Counseling Level 1

This course is the first of three classes in Phase 1 and covers the theological foundation of counseling, the character of the counselor, a comparison of counseling philosophies, the biblical process of change, the role of repentance, and the process of handling crisis situations. Case studies are an integral part of the curriculum of this class. Topics include:

I. Orientation to and Dynamics of Biblical Counseling

A. Basics of Biblical Counseling?

  1. The Need for Biblical Counseling
  2. The Definition and Goal of Biblical Counseling
  3. Progressive Sanctification
  4. Process of Biblical Change
  5. Qualifications of a Biblical Counselor
  6. Getting to Heart Issues

B. Key Elements in Biblical Counseling

  1. Gathering Data
  2. Discerning Problems Biblically
  3. Establishing Involvement with Counselees
  4. Giving Hope
  5. Providing Instruction
  6. Giving Homework

II. Critical Reflection on Various Theories in Counseling

A. Secular and Integration Theories
B. What Makes Biblical Counseling Biblical?

Discipleship Counseling Level 2

The second of three courses focuses on the specific realm of marriage and the family. This course covers the purpose of marriage, divorce and remarriage, roles of the Husband and Wife, physical intimacy within marriage, communication and conflict resolution, stewardship of time, resources and priorities, and parenting. Case studies are an integral part of the curriculum of this class. Topics include:

III. Husband and Wife Relationships

A. God’s Purpose for Marriage
B. Roles of the Husband and Wife
C. Communication
D. Biblical Sexuality
E. Biblical Intimacy
F. Conflict Resolution

IV. Parent and Child Relationships

1. Decision Making
2. Suffering & Grief
3. Fear & Worry
4. Anger & Resentment
5. Church Discipline
6. Possession

VII. Medical Issues in Counseling

A. Physical Illness and Biblical Counseling
B. Psychotropic Drugs and Biblical Counseling
C. Substance Abuse

VIII. Case Studies

A. Total Casebook, Role Plays, and other Practice Case Discussions

Discipleship Counseling Level 3

The final course is designed for those who desire to pursue a more in-depth understanding of discipleship counseling. This class dives deeper into specific topics. Topics include anger, worry, fear, depression, medical issues, learning disorders, eating problems, decision making; and abuse, among others. Case studies are an integral part of the curriculum for this class. Topics include:

VI. Advanced Issues

A. Physical Illness and Biblical Counseling
B. Psychotropic Drugs and Biblical Counseling

VII. Case Studies

A. Total Casebook, Role Plays, and other Practice Case Discussions

Phase 2 – Written Exams Phase

The Exam phase includes exam questions that gives the student the opportunity for deeper study into specific topics. There are two sections. The first is a theological section that tests the student’s understanding of biblical doctrines and their use in biblical counseling. The other is a practical section where the student will discuss methods of handling a variety of counseling situations.

Each course has a required reading list that accompanies each lecture. In order for a student to complete certification all reading with reading reports must be completed. Each course syllabus outlines the reading list with required pages. All assignments are uploaded through the student’s Moodle portal.

I. Witten Exams

Theological Topics
Practical Counseling 

II. Readings

1. Required Reading Completion
2. Reading Reports

Phase 3 – Supervision Phase

Once the first two phases are completed, the student will enter into a time of supervision. This is where the student has the opportunity to put their acquired knowledge into action. The student will be given actual counseling cases to be supervised by the pastoral staff of Grace Church. Case reports are required for each session and discussed in prescheduled weekly meetings. This provides an opportunity for the student to ask questions, develop strategies, and fine tune their counseling abilities. This is a valuable opportunity to learn while doing counseling. This phase requires the completion of 30 different sessions over the course of a year.

I. Supervised Counseling Sessions

A. 30 total sessions
B. Weekly meetings with supervisor
C. Case Reports

Related Ministries


Coming alongside God’s people to assist them in the application of Scripture through the work of the Holy Spirit.
Contact: 818-909-5581