I read a lot of books dealing with counseling in the church. One of the most helpful and accessible books I’ve read is Rid of My Disgrace by Justin and Lindsey Holcomb. I prefer to post a more in-depth review, but Crossway is offering the ebook for $0.99 right now, so go for it!
Rid of My Disgrace is narrow in focus — it’s geared toward victims of sexual assault (and toward those who are trying to help). The book drips with grace as the Holcombs seek to recover those who have been so violently exposed as a result of the heinous acts against them. Since this is a less comprehensive post, I’ll list a few quotes as further encouragement to add this to your library. (I’d post page numbers but I doubt my ebook corresponds to the physical copy.)
To your experience of one-way violence, God brings one-way love…. One way love does not avoid you, but comes near, not because of personal merit but because of your need. It is the lasting transformation that takes place in human experience. One-way love is the change agent you need for the pain you are experiencing.
What victims need are not self-produced positive statements but God’s statements about his response to their pain…. Grace transforms and heals; and healing comes by hearing God’s statements to you, not speaking your own statements to yourself.
(God) already sees, hears, and knows your suffering and is facing it in its fullness even before you cried out. Now he is inviting you to face it with him, not alone.
Victims often fail to realize that God’s own sorrow for what has happened is deep and profound. Mourn. Grieve. Cry. God is grieved by and angry at what happened to you. He is even more grieved and angry than you are, so you are invited to participate with God in his grief and anger.
If you are in Christ, your identity is deeper than any of your wounds.
Self-love and self-help do not work because we’ll never peel back enough layers of ourselves to find the true self at the core that is pure and lovable. We need a bigger love to rescue us, one that overcomes the effects of the fall and restores to us the dignity that has been lost.
Belonging to God means that you are valuable to God, that God is concerned about you, that God sees and knows you, and that God cares about you more than you do.
*All quotes are taken from Rid of My Disgrace.