A friend feels rejected. A counselee is angry. A church member’s child is ill. You want to help, but where do you begin? Author and counselor Michael R. Emlet outlines a model of one-another ministry based on how God sees and loves his people primarily as saints, while bringing comfort to the sufferer, and faithfully speaking truth to the sinner.
Filled with everyday illustrations as well as counseling examples, Emlet demonstrates what it looks like to approach fellow believers simultaneously as saints, sufferers, and sinners. Emlet unpacks Scripture and draws on his many years of counseling experience to help counselors, pastors, and friends love others wisely and well.
As part of CCEF’s Helping the Helper series, this guide for ministry provides an overall framework for wisely helping any person by loving others in the same way that God loves us.
Michael R. Emlet, MDiv, MD, practiced as a family physician for over ten years before becoming a counselor and faculty member at the Christian Counseling & Educational Foundation (CCEF).
“In this Scripture-saturated book, Michael Emlet uses real-life counseling interactions and insights gained from years of counseling and training counselors to demonstrate how we can love, listen to, grieve with, challenge, and accept the people around us in ways that befit the gospel of the grace of Jesus.” - Nancy Guthrie, Author of Saints & Scoundrels in the Story of Jesus
“Michael Emlet has written a very compassionate, biblical, and helpful book, with practical guidelines for how to love others as God loves us. It emphasizes the need to hold all three truths in a balanced perspective for every person: as a saint in Christ, a sufferer, and a sinner. Highly recommended!” - Siang-Yang Tan, Professor of Psychology, Fuller Theological Seminary; author of Shepherding God’s People and Counseling and Psychotherapy: A Christian Perspective
"Dr. Michael Emlet has given us a treasure. He’s primarily focused on how we relate to others through the triple lens of saint, sufferer, and sinner. He’s particularly strong at blending those lenses together. The result? You can begin to look at and treat people as fully human. His experience as a counselor grounds his thoroughly biblical insights in real life. This immensely helpful book isn’t just for counselors—it’s for all of Jesus’s followers." - Paul Miller, Author of A Praying Life and J-Curve: Dying and Rising with Jesus in Everyday Life
"As Christians, we know we are called to love our neighbors as ourselves, but it can be hard to know what it means to offer love to our neighbors on the ground in concrete, daily ways. In this deep, rich, and practical book, Michael Emlet draws on Scripture and years of experience as a Christian husband, parent, church member, and counselor to help us more faithfully and fully love our neighbors, our spouses, our children, and all whom God brings into our lives. Through this exploration of what it means that we are all simultaneously saints, sufferers, and sinners, which is shaped by the wisdom of the Bible on every page, those who read this book will come away better equipped to fulfill the Great Commandment in the quotidian moments of everyday life and ministry." - Kristen Deede Johnson, Award-winning author; dean and professor of Theology and Christian Formation, Western Theological Seminary
“This book will give you a fuller view of yourself and those you love. It is clear, helpful, gentle, and wise, which just happens to be the way I would describe Mike.” - Edward T Welch, Faculty and counselor, Christian Counseling and Educational Foundation (CCEF); author of A Small Book for the Anxious Heart
“Every person who seeks counseling brings a unique blend of history, beliefs, behaviors, circumstances, and relationships, but there are fundamental truths that apply broadly to every person we minister to. Our identity before God as saints, sufferers, and sinners is perhaps the foundational truth upon which our counseling stands. Saints, Sufferers,and Sinners offers a deeply biblical and theological understanding of this reality and demonstrates how this broad principle fleshes out in the counseling experience with ground level practical application.” - Curtis Solomon, Executive Director, The Biblical Counseling Coalition
“Two things I appreciate about Michael Emlet’s new book: 1) Its clarity regarding the realities of believers being saints, sufferers, and sinners while we walk this earth, and 2) Its realistic application of our identity in Christ affecting each of these dimensions of our lives in the way that we live, love, counsel, encourage, correct, and repent for the sake of others.” - Bryan Chapell, Pastor; author