Grow up?

CryingWe destroy arguments and every lofty opinion raised against the knowledge of God, and take every thought captive to obey Christ.    2 Corinthians 10:5

Think about your mind for a moment. Everything we do starts with a thought. Do you see your mind as  corrupt and depraved?  Are you stuck in the pains of the past? The Bible has a lot to say about our minds and our hearts, which are continually warring against the spirit. Without the Spirit of God, we would never be able to grab onto the spiritual realities of the Word of God.

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One of the biggest challenges the Church faces is how to equip and grow mature Christians, without using man-made formulas. So where does our physiology come into play, and where does the Holy Spirit work in us?

Joining us for the discussion in studio today is Dr.Paul Hegstrom, founder of Lifeskills International. (If you live in Wisconsin, the group we recommend is Freedom Life Skills.)  You may remember a movie about Dr. Paul’s life and incredible testimony that won an Emmy, called Unforgivable starring the late actor John Ritter.



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3 Responses to Grow up?

  1. Deb says:

    Dear Amy and Mike,
    I speak to you as a loving sister in Christ and one who has learned MUCH from your ministry. After listening to “Grow Up” yesterday I was much convicted by the Holy Spirit and I cannot rest until I speak my concern and confusion over Lifeskills International and Freedom Life Skills. Are they claiming to be a Christ and scripture based/focused ministry? If they are then they are very misleading and do not mention this on their websites. Your radio program and Paul Hegstrom say one thing, but the websites say another. Why don’t the websites say they are a Christian ministry/counseling method based on the Bible? This is very confusing and I know God is not the author of confusion.
    On the surface they sound terrific and like a true “Godsend”. My heart bleeds for the suffering Mr. Hegstrom went through and I know that he says he tried both worldly help and ministers for help and neither helped him. He said he was given revelation from God but are they truly “of God”? I go to the websites and nowhere do I see that they are Christ/scripture based ministries and Lifeskills International has trained psychologists working for them. I have wondered about “Christian“psychologists for a while now and do not see that they are scripturally based. They are trained in methods invented and developed by worldly men. Nowhere do I see Jesus or the apostles sending anyone to world based philosophies for help. In fact, just the opposite ("See to it that no one takes you captive by philosophy and empty deceit, according to human tradition, according to the elemental spirits of the world, and not according to Christ." Col 2:8 )
    2 Cor 10:5 "We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ."
    Psalm 118:8 (KJV)8 It is better to trust in the LORD than to put confidence in man.
    Proverbs 3:5-6 (KJV)5 Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.6 In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths.
    Jeremiah 10:23 (KJV)23 O LORD, I know that the way of man is not in himself: it is not in man that walketh to direct his steps.
    2 Corinthians 12:9 (NIV) 9 But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.
    What makes Lifeskills different from worldly psychology? No drugs? Using some scripture? These are not to be the measuring sticks for born again Christians. Only God’s whole word is to be our answer for EVERYTHING. I am sure the founder is very sincere and says he sought God’s word and was even a minister, but I know Beth Moore and Billy Graham seek God’s word (probably very sincerely) and are ministers as well, but I see them being deceived (teaching direct new [non-scriptural]revelation from God in the church age and universalism/no need for Christ). The words Mr. Hegstrom is saying sound like such a mixture from worldly wisdom and God’s Word.
    Is Lifeskills bad? No. Has Lifeskills been successful? It seems so, but, again that is not to be a born again believers measuring stick. I am certainly NOT diminishing any childhood trauma. My own husband was sexually abused at an early age by his grandfather. He sought counseling from regular worldly psychology and said it made all the difference. He was and is currently not a Christian but is a very loving, intelligent man and a terrific husband from the world’s point of view. I myself tried to kill myself when I was a child and have fought depression (councilor/on drugs). I have been a born again Christian for the past two years now and Christ has healed me from the depression and anger (through His word and Spirit only). Why would born again Christians go to Lifeskills? This sounds like worldly psycho- babble/self-help dressed in “Christian” clothes. Why do we need the Bible plus….or Jesus plus….?
    Do I think these sufferings shouldn’t be addressed? Certainly NOT! Do I believe that God can work through worldly things? Absolutely! He can do His will and bring blessing to His followers through anything (Romans 8:28). That doesn’t mean that thing is “of God” or “from” God though.
    Now, if he is aiming only at unsaved people then it could be a different story, but again, misleading from what Mr. Hegstrom says verbally and what the websites promote. If an unsaved person comes into the program(s) and Lifeskills uses scripture then how can a non-believer in Jesus or the Bible get any help from that?
    Again, I find much misleading and confusion here. Mike, you are on the board of Freedom Life Skills?! Please explain this contradiction to me. What am I missing?


  2. Rose Vosburgh says:

    I agree with Deb. When we have the Scriptures, we have all we need. Dr. Jay Adams calls Christians back to Biblical counseling in his book, Competent to Counsel. He demonstrates the sufficiency of the Word of God to bring about change that pleases God and genuinely helps the person being counseled. He calls this type of counseling Nouthetic Counseling and it is based on Scriptures alone…not on man's wisdom from psychology. You can read more about it at


    • debby says:

      I see your points in these comments, however, coming from a Christian 28 yr verbally and emotionally abusive marriage, I have found that scripture can be twisted or "picked out" to say whatever someone wants it to say. I don't know about this life skills (have just seen his story, seen some dvds, read his wife's book, etc) but I do know that 10 years of counseling in the church gave me a lot of cliche responses, none of which made the abuse go away. I looked at letters I had written to my spouse over the years, detailing his actions and how they made me and our children feel, to no avail. But when I got information on the abuse cycle, I matched it up with those behaviors and it was textbook abuse cycle! So my question is this, if Christian counseling is the answer, none of these folks know anything about the abuse cycle. I began "getting to know my God" his attributes, his mercy, grace AND his judgement, which the church conveniently left out. God is NOT just LOVE, he is RIGHTEOUS and for an abuser to continue to get away with it bc his wife is listening to church goers recite specific verses, while leaving out the "don't hang out with an angry man" verses for the abuser, they are doing her a grave disservice. I read God's word and He speaks to MY heart. He is no respecter of persons. I don't need counseling to know what he is doing is wrong and I don't have to submit to abuse. God does not condone abuse! Ever.


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