A couple of years ago, I was talking with some college age kids. Two of them were professing Christians. Maybe, I should say instead, they were talking to me. I allowed them to talk to me because I wanted to be a good listener and then challenge them with their thinking. They weren't happy that I was passing out tracts, and informed me that Jesus wouldn't have done that. One girl even had parents who weren't saved, and she told me that she wouldn't want me to meet her parents because I would turn them off to Christianity. We had a long, mostly one sided, conversation and at the end, the one girl informed me of some books I should read. One of them was by Rob Bell called, 'Velvet Elvis'. I also thought for sure that I heard her say something interesting. If I heard correctly, the words went something like this; "When the culture and the Scriptures don't agree, Scriptures must bow down to the culture." Did I hear this correctly? I'm not sure, but after I read a critique on Velvet Elvis, I could see why they would think this.
Around 3am, I was on the internet doing a search for Amy Grant quotes. The reason I am doing this is because I am hearing more and more that people are saying things like, "God wants me happy." I see a lot of professing Christians believing they are entitled to certain things. As I take this Biblical Counseling class, I also see how secular psychology has crept into the church. Secular psychology is really just another religion. It is a category that belongs to the church, but for various reasons, it was taken away from the church and given over to the medical field. The medical field is totally frustrated by it because there are no resolutions for some of the problems for those who are suffering mentally and emotionally. You can't give a pill to a woman who was sexually abused as a child, and make her all better. It just doesn't work that way.
Secular psychology seeks to find answers in man, not in Scriptures. There are some decent methodologies in secular psychology, but the starting point is different than Biblical Counseling. Biblical Counseling takes into consideration God's holiness, man's sinfulness due to the fall, man's responsibility to God and society, and the answer to man's sin being found only in the Cross of Jesus Christ. Secular psychology could swing from one end of the pendulum to the other. It could set men free from responsibility due to circumstances done to the person, or, it could blame the person or other people for why the person is the way he is. The goal of secular psychology is to solve the person's problem and to help the patient to be happy, but the goal of Biblical Counseling is to help a suffering person be able to come to the place where he or she can deal with the realities of life, specifically his or her relationship with a holy God.
Back to the Amy Grant thing. I found more info on not only her situation with her divorce, but also what her counselor told her in regards to her marriage to Gary Chapman. I remember a quote by Amy Grant that had to do with marriage and part of it said something like this; "God created marriage so that we could enjoy one another to the fullest". The article I was reading during the night was written by a man who was criticizing another man who did not agree with the way Amy Grant handled her divorce. He did not want to promote her any more, and the man writing the article didn't agree. The man who didn't want to promote her because she violated Scripture in working through her divorce. But here is the whole thought of mine; The man who was criticizing the man who didn't want to promote Amy Grant anymore also said some interesting things. In his article, he gave some of his reasons why people should be divorced and one of them is because of having mismatched personalities. I don't know about you, but I don't see anywhere in Scriptures indicating the people should get a divorce because their personalities don't match. The man went further to explain that those marriages have already failed. In the above quote by Amy Grant concerning our enjoying one another to the fullest, I now know where that came from. It came from her counselor. That is what her counselor told her. If you are having marriage problems, and you go to a counselor, and she tells you that God created marriage so two people could enjoy each other to the fullest, what would you end up thinking? If you didn't know better, you would conclude from that statement that God wants His people happy. You might even think that if you aren't happy, then God isn't happy.
Do you see how people can be harmed by having a low regard for the Scriptures? In the case above, the Scriptures were made to bow to the culture. Basically, the culture says, you should be happy. Reality is, life is hard. Jesus says, if anyone is to come after Him, he must leave everything he loves behind (not meaning he should not be responsible, but he shouldn't hang on to those things that he is trusting in to make him 'happy'). God promises to take care of us when we abandon all to follow Him. But He also promises that life will have challenges, and that we are not here to live for our own glory and lusts. We are to live for His glory alone. God wants to make us holy, not happy (I am not saying that God wants us unhappy either). The culture will not tell you that. So, with that in mind, will you trust in the Scriptures or will you go along with what the cultures believes?