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The Counseling Solutions Group

By: David Lyda (From: Volume 2 - Issue 3)
(Photo provided by Rick Thomas.)

“To inspire and equip each person by providing practical tools and ongoing training for more effective living” is the Mission Statement for The Counseling Solutions Group.

Spearheaded by Rick Thomas, this worldwide organization based in Greenville, SC is helping thousands of people to live more mature and fruitful lives. Christians are trained through a number of different programs that teach them how to care for others. Individuals in need of help in their own struggles are also connected with counselors and a wealth of training material. This non-profit organization offers many free resources through their website. More in depth courses and tools are also available for a small fee.

Counselor and former pastor Rick Thomas founded The Counseling Solutions Group in 2008. Many trials and tribulations have given him a servant’s heart. Growing up with an abusive alcoholic father, Rick found himself going down a similar path of worldliness. Drinking and drug abuse began when he was only 12, and he soon found himself in jail. His two older brothers had also chosen the outlaw life and were in prison. Some years later, both of them were murdered. Rick was reformed by the system, but Christ was not a part of his life. His transformation into a child of God began to be set in motion after a coworker witnessed to him in 1984. Rick became involved in church early on in his conversion and immersed himself in the Bible. A God-given desire to learn and grow prompted a move from Monroe, NC to Greenville, SC in 1986. Rick soon entered into one of the darkest valleys of his life.

Looking back, Rick sees the good that God brought into his life through pain. Everything that he had ever wanted in life was destroyed when his wife suddenly left with their daughter and son for another man. For nine years Rick lived a tortured existence of isolation. Through this period he poured over the book of Job time and time again. As Rick put it, “I knew the end of the story – how the Lord re-blessed Job, and I desperately wanted to experience this from God. I went to college to become educated in the Bible. I was driven into the wilderness to become educated by God.”

Restoration did come through “uncommon suffering and God’s unmerited favor.” Through any trial we face, there are two options. We can be defeated, or we can let God mold us through it. Rick saw that “all of those things were working together for my good, God’s glory, and the benefit of others.” This Job experience brought a new mission. All that Rick had experienced, the defeats and the victories, could be used as a blessing to others. A heart for counseling developed into The Counseling Solutions Group.

Today, Rick and his team are continuously using one-on-one and modern technology to help others. Through the internet, the organization brings training webinars, topic specific articles, book reviews, downloadable Rick Thomas books, and a member only forum. Counselors are available for individuals through The Counseling Solutions Group, including long distance options. Additional counselors and groups are linked on their website; some are free and others charge for their services. 

Membership to extra tools and discipleship trainers is available for a monthly fee. Churches are encouraged to buy special packages for interested members. This small investment would allow their people to receive professional training at no cost to the member. Every article that Rick has ever written, over 120 hours of webinars, open forums to address counseling issues, and much more are available with membership.

Training programs for Christian leaders desiring to counsel others have options too. In addition to the website resources, there is a two year study course for discipleship that moves at the student’s own pace. Training can be supervised with coaching by Rick or it can be self study. The goal of this program is to equip the church in applying Biblical wisdom to every aspect of life. It is intense and requires dedication. Not all students complete the program, but Rick puts it into perspective. “I am not looking for just anybody to supervise. I’m looking for leaders. These are folks who have a distinct gift for disciple-making or what some in our Christian culture call Christian or biblical counseling.”

The peace that passes all understanding (Philippians 4:7) can only come from God. Rick Thomas has a passion to share that Good News. Through many dangers, toils, and snares, the Lord has equipped him to help others. His mission is realized through The Counseling Solutions Group. A challenge that can be brought before all Christians is, what will we do with our Job experiences in life? Will we allow God to have His perfect work? “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to [his] purpose.” (Romans 8:28)

To find out more about The Counseling Solutions Group and its services, visit www.RickThomas.net.

www.RickThomas.net

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From: Volume 2 - Issue 3


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