I do not remember a time in my life when I did not believe that the Bible was the word of God; I try to have Christ at the center of my life, but have, at times, failed miserably. I call myself a Christ follower.
In working with children, teens and young adults, I strive to tap into my clients' Christian faith whenever possible, utilizing this faith as a positive coping strategy in their life. At times I have been able to do this with the family as well. I believe that when able, it is important to encourage my clients to have involvement in the local Christian church, not only for worship and service, but also for a strong, loving social network. I love finding Bible verses to share with clients and families that promote positive thinking in oneself. These are not hard to find! Prayer is important for guiding someone towards strength and peace when dealing with mental illness, but also for experiencing an overall close, healthy, intimate relationship with the Trinity.
I try to pray for my clients on my way to work every day and for me to look at each of them as made in the image of God. If my client is not a Christian, I do not force my Christian views upon them, but instead I attempt to "walk the talk." I love what I do and I feel very blessed to be able to work with the young people that I do.
For information about Shelly’s professional background and training click here.
Shelley can be reached at the Kalamazoo Clinic of Pine Rest by calling (269) 343-6700.