You Know That Those On The Frontlines of Faith
(Pastors, Missionaries, and Their Families) Are Under Severe Attack?
Not physical attacks, or the assaults of terrorists, but silent
attacks that can be devastating. These servants of God suffer things
like depression, discouragement, guilt, fear, loneliness, addictions,
marital conflicts — It only makes sense that those who sacrifice
so much to serve the Lord full-time are hit hardest by Satan's
weapons. Many of these dear servants of Christ suffer secretly with
deep emotional wounds as they struggle under heavy burdens in their
One weary pastor's wife puts it this way:
"The enemy seems to have a special hatred
for those of us who have given our lives to serving the Lord.
This battle is intensely real…!"
You can stand in the gap and help us help them find lasting peace
and victory in their work for the
Kingdom of God.
In the stories that follow you will see how God can use
you to set off a chain-reaction of grace and blessings to help hurting
men, women and children . . .
A few years ago Kate lived in hopeless desperation. She was consumed
with feelings of doubt and discouragement about her marriage. They
lived under the same roof, but found themselves angry, bitter and
cold toward each other. She suffered every day under the crushing
weight of guilt and stress because she knew their problems were
harming their precious little daughter, Jenna.
Many well-meaning family and friends advised her to "hire
a divorce lawyer." But in her heart she could hear that still,
small voice of her God urging her not to give up but to seek help
instead. That is when she picked up the phone and called Pastor
Elliott to make an appointment for counseling.
Her husband, Brad, felt overwhelmed with all the responsibilities
of being a new dad and the head of the family. Growing up, he never
had a good example to follow of what a godly husband or father should
be. Frustrated and confused, he began to withdraw and shut down.
After resisting the idea of counseling with every excuse under the
sun, finally at the end of his rope, Brad agreed to see Pastor Elliott
A year later, we see a caterpillar-to-butterfly transformation
in this couple. Kate says her husband has now become her "best
friend and true partner." Brad cannot stop talking about the
awesome changes God has performed in his marriage and in his own
Brad and Kate are living examples of Mark 10:27,
"With men it is impossible, but not with God; for with
God, all things are possible." Unlike some couples, they
didn't turn to divorce lawyers to solve their problems. Pastor
Elliott's biblical counsel was the lifeline God used to save this
dear Christian family.
But ten years earlier Pastor Elliott found himself in his own marital
nightmare. He was newly married and starting his first ministry
as pastor, all in the same month. Only two months later, he and
his wife, Marie, learned that their first child was on the way.
Talk about stress! Elliott didn't know where to start.
Making the mistakes many young pastors make, Elliott began pouring
all his energy into his ministry, while Marie silently suffered
feelings of loneliness and abandonment. She needed more of Elliott's
time and attention to go toward her and their new baby. She even
became jealous of the people at church who got his best—while
she got the crumbs of an exhausted man. As her depression and isolation
intensified, she confided to a friend, "He's out there
saving the world, and I can't even seem to face it anymore."
Elliott felt the tension build each night on his way home. He also
felt a ton of guilt, knowing his priorities were all messed up.
Marie cried a lot and began ignoring him. He felt he was living
the life of a hypocrite and began hating the man he saw in the mirror.
To handle the stress, he started drinking. Little by little the
alcohol took over his life and he was on the verge of losing everything—his
ministry and his family.
Hard to imagine, isn't it?—that a man of God, a strong, respected
spiritual leader, could go so far off course. Sadly, it happens
more often than you know.
While attending a weekend women's retreat, Marie saw an old missionary
friend, Susan. Susan told Marie that while she was on the mission
field three years earlier she became very depressed and discouraged.
Surrounded by starving children, a strange language and customs,
and frequent Illnesses, it was like "a living hell." Susan
said things got so bad she was forced to leave her mission assignment
to return to the states to seek help.
Susan told Marie about a place in southern California where pastors,
church leaders, missionaries, and their families could get confidential
counseling that was solidly biblical. She said that because of the
professional Christian therapy she received there, she was able
to get victory over her emotional struggles and returned to the
mission field, again leading many souls to a new life in Christ.
Hearing this, Marie was filled with hope. With great excitement
she drove home to share this news with Elliott, praying that God
would make him open to the idea of getting help themselves.
That is how I met Elliott and his wonderful
family. I'm Dr. Browning, founder and director of the Foundation
for Applied Biblical Counseling (FABC), the place Susan was talking
about. Yes, God did a wondrous work restoring Susan's joy, peace
and ministry halfway around the world. But before she returned to
the mission field, He used her testimony to lead Elliott and Marie
out of their own darkness to FABC where, through careful application
of Scripture and prayer, their marriage and personal lives were
Because of this marvelous sequence of events, Pastor Elliott now
has his priorities straight—pleasing God first, loving his
wife and child next, and the ministry and everything else following
close in line. The Lord is now using him greatly again, leading
a congregation of over 800 people, where he shares all he has learned
with people like Brad and Kate.
And Kate? Now she is able to be there for other struggling women.
She has a powerful ministry to women, building their faith in the
power of God to revive and restore even the most "hopeless"
marriage through His Word and His grace.
The counseling at FABC played a special part in this "chain-reaction
of grace." But it did not begin with us. It really began with
someone who cared enough to invest in the Kingdom of God. Because
of their regular gifts and donations, we are able to provide the
counseling these dear servants of God would otherwise never be able
Little Jenna now sees what real love looks like. Over 800 people
sit under the anointed teaching, and are blessed in the counseling
ministry of Pastor Elliott. Both Kate and Marie know the joy of
being loved "as Christ loves the church." And someday
we will see many radiant faces in heaven because of Susan's bringing
the gospel to their village. How we praise God for allowing our
ministry to be a part of His work in their lives.
So, when you give regularly to support the counseling ministry
of the Foundation for Applied Biblical Counseling, and when you
pray for our work, you are not just making a tax-deductible donation.
You are actually investing in a multiplication of God's grace
and peace far beyond anything you could imagine. As He says, "For
all things are for your sakes, that grace, having spread through
the many, may cause thanksgiving to abound to the glory of God..."
and "grace unto you, and peace be multiplied..."
2 Corinthians 4:15, 1 Peter 1:2
With your help and support we can live out the truth of those verses.
If you could spend time with us in our office and hear the stories
of others in the full-time ministry, you would be moved to tears
at the hardships they suffer. But you would also leave with tears
of rejoicing, seeing the "beauty from ashes" transformations
after only a brief series of counseling sessions. You would see
living examples of His promise, "He sent His word and healed
them, and delivered them from their destructions" Psalm
107:20. And all because you cared enough to pray and to
We know you're busy. But would you pause
just for a moment now and ask the Lord if He would have you come
alongside and help us help His dear servants who sacrifice so much?
God is calling us to expand the work of the Foundation to extend
His hope and healing touch to many more hurting and wounded people
who desperately need help but cannot afford it. We don't want to
refer away anyone in need of our help due to lack of staff, time
How can you help? As a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, we accept
monetary contributions, large or small. From $5 to thousands, whatever
the Lord leads you to share … it will bless so many.
Tax-deductible donations of cars, trucks, vans, RVs and even real
estate can also be converted into actual face-to-face counseling
sessions for hurting men, women and children. The Lord may also
lead some to help in their estate planning. It can also provide
the resources enabling us to provide e-mail therapy to missionaries
far away who need help but cannot come here to find it. Your gifts
also enable us to send them free-of-charge many Scripture-based
books, tapes and CDs to encourage them. Pray about it, would you?
And see what the Lord would have you do to help (John 2:5,
Luke 6:38, Acts 20:35).
To let you see first-hand how God uses this ministry, we'll introduce
you to "the real experts" — the pastors and missionaries
we've had the honor and the joy to help. You'll find their personal
On behalf of many who will find our doors open to them because
of you, and who will find their way into His glorious peace and
victory, we thank you. May God richly reward you for helping us
help them and give you the desires of your heart.
With deep gratitude,
Dr. Charles Browning
Foundation For Applied Biblical Counseling
P.S. Someone has said, "Prayer changes things."
But it's probably more accurate to say: Prayer changes
us, and through us God changes things. Thank you so much for
your prayers and for your gifts to help us provide professional
and biblical counsel to those in the full-time ministry. They will
find the peace they need
because of you.
Because of Your Prayers and Gifts,
These Are the Kind of Things
You Make Happen in the Lives of Others in Need . . .
Let the "experts" tell you themselves —
The actual words of some of those who have found strength
and comfort at the Foundation:
"We were referred to Dr. Browning and the Foundation
by a fellow pastor due to our own marital issues. Since then we
have referred many others for counseling. Neither of us had ever
received any counseling. From our very first session it was clear
that it was going to be very different than we had expected. Each
issue and area of conflict that we dealt with was viewed only thru
the lens of scripture...Learning how to appropriate His word in
a way I never known before opened the door to a whole new way of
life in Christ. My walk with the Lord was turned upside down for
God's glory!...Scripture was the foundation of each session,
and the homework in the Word we were given had a powerful impact
on me, helping me hear God's Spirit speak to me in such intimate
ways. This totally changed me! The transformation that began from
our first session has continued to this very day in countless ways.
I oversee a large women's ministry in the church my husband
pastors and speak at women's events and conferences…I
counsel women in our church almost every day, and I see the fruit
of what the Lord did in my heart because of our counseling at FABC.
My life and marriage and ministry are living testimonies to the
fruitfulness and powerful way God has used this wonderful ministry.
Prayerful, financial support is exactly what this wonderful organization
— pastor's wife
"We sought counseling there because of the results and
testimony of others. Our counseling at the Foundation was a point
of Divine intervention for us...The Word was used as the foundation
and authority to help us right wrong thinking and wrong actions,
and to help us with repentance and a fresh start. Our counseling
had an incredible and dramatic impact on our relationship with God
and with each other."
— missionary couple now actively serving
"Our counseling was compassionate, encouraging and totally
based on the word of God and the leading of the Holy Spirit. It
encouraged me to look at Jesus, away from self, to guard and control
my thoughts to give me the victory. It caused me to draw closer
to Him, and have a deeper love for His word. The word of God was
used in the sessions and in homework in a powerful way to change
my heart and my mind. My counseling is still a constant reminder
to allow the word to guide me."
— assistant pastor, no longer suffering
from panic attacks
"I was in desperate need of help from a spiraling depression
that I saw no relief from. In the counseling I received, I was shown
how to let the Lord meet me in my pain, and how to allow His strength
and wisdom to pull me out of it...I learned how available Jesus
really is in my every need...I learned how I try to get myself out
of situations and try to figure out everything, instead of humbly
letting the Lord control my life...It was so great seeing how powerful
Scripture is to overcome situations and heal damaged emotions. It
was such a blessing to know there was a ministry to uplift fallen
people and to know it was safe and professional and confidential."
— pastor's wife
"In our counseling we were led in a thorough search for
answers in the Word of God to solve our problems. Our counsel brought
the solution into the light. We were able to speak the truth in
love and find resolution in the Lord. It brought us into a closer
and more truthful walk with God. We were able to be real, admit
and confess our sins, and receive the forgiveness and healing the
Lord wants for His children. Seeing everything from God's
perspective...we learned we don't need to know all the "why's,"
we need to learn how to live abundantly in Christ...Our counseling
continues to be a blessing in our personal life and in our marriage.
The enemy seems to have a special hatred for those of us who have
given our lives to serving the Lord. This battle is intensely real…The
counsel we received at the Foundation helps us fight from victory
— pastor and his wife
"We had serious problems in our marriage...The counseling
we received helped me get serious by pleasing God by obeying His
Word. The scriptures given me in our counseling and for homework
were effective in showing me what I needed to do to change. I believe
it is the best counseling any Christian could receive because it
is based directly on biblical wisdom."
— missionary husband
"Our counselor allowed the Holy Spirit to use him to
convict and direct us of what we were doing wrong and showed us
how to correct it based on the Scriptures...it improved our marriage
because the Scriptures used were memorized by both of us. Now when
we start to fall into the old selfish and angry way of thinking,
it isn't very long until those Scriptures return and convict
our hearts, and we ask for forgiveness.
The counseling taught us that God's Word is the tool to use
in our marriage to resolve future issues...We still talk about our
counseling, sometimes quoting verses to each other when we sense
we're getting off track. The Lord answered my prayers by directing
us to the Foundation for the help we needed. That counseling changed
our marriage. That counseling healed our marriage. Thank you so
— pastor's wife
"In the early 80s my husband and I were having severe
marital problems. He was an alcoholic. Dr. Browning always started
and ended each session with prayer. He always helped me find a biblical
strategy and plans to handle my problems, and gave me Bible verses
each time for homework. I read these scriptures over and over in
my devotions. Through those verses and counsel, I always understood
God's wisdom and guidance.
My husband eventually left me and our 5 children to be with
another woman. He later divorced me and finally drank himself to
death. Without Dr. B.'s faithful love, support, wisdom, kindness
and understanding, I would never have survived...I always left his
office with the word of God on my little card, feeling hope and
secure in the Lord. Each time my faith was renewed in less than
an hour. God would see me through. I could face whatever was ahead
with courage and strength in Jesus Christ. How I praise God for
being helped so many times through this ministry."
— leader in women's Bible study ministries
"I had a major problem with lust. The counsel I received
was not man's way, but God's way, no pop psychology
here, or blame-everyone-else worldly therapy. This is good ol'
fashioned take-responsibility-for-yourself counsel.
My counselor pointed me to the Scripture which I began to practice
in my daily walk. I learned how to let God resolve the issues by
applying the word in my life, letting the Spirit bring freedom from
bondage. I've never been closer to the Lord or to my wife.
God's ultimate authority in His Word was the basis for all
my counseling. I daily continue to meditate upon what I learned
in my counseling at FABC."
"There is no other referral source I would trust for
those needing counseling true to the Bible."
"We came to the Foundation facing personal crises with
our own teenage children, as well as crises with members of our
own staff. Our therapist used a self-discovery type of Scriptural
counseling to teach us how to let the Holy Spirit speak to us through
the Word. Our whole perspective changed as to how we handled the
problems facing us. Our counseling taught us how to stay on track,
and how God is greater than anything thrown at us.
After his counseling, a staff member we referred was brought
to a place of a depth of understanding to overcome a condemnation
problem he suffered under for over 20 years, and has now found incredible
strength and comfort in God's sovereignty. At the Foundation
they serve the body of Christ in a selfless way. I long for the
same type of counseling ministry within the reach of those in our
— pastor in a distant state
"My counselor has the gift of teaching me how to correct
and reconstruct right thinking, using prayer and the guidance of
the Holy Spirit for guidance and comfort. Using the Bible, we now
know how to see the danger signs and how to yield our irritations
and personal rights to God."
— pastor's wife
"This ministry saved my life. I am now a stronger person
in the Lord. I am so grateful to God for all the notes written to
me, the Bible passages given to me, all the love I've felt
from the Lord in each session, and for all the phone calls from
my counselor has given me. This ministry is the best! You could
not invest your time, prayers or money in a better way to bring
the kingdom of God into many lives as He has to mine."
— elderly woman rejected and abandoned
by her own family
Foundation for Applied Biblical Counseling
5122 Katella Avenue, Suite 305
Los Alamitos CA 90720