022: Dr. Eyrich Interview – Part 3


What You'll Discover in this Episode:

Welcome back to The Biblical Counseling Podcast! In this episode, we are joined by our regular guest Dr. Howard A. Eyrich for Part 3 of an interview with the biblical counseling pioneer. Today’s episode will cover the International Association of Biblical Counselors (IABC) Conference which was held on August 1st-3rd, 2019 in St. Louis, Missouri. The conference's theme this year was HOPE.


The IABC Board came up with a list of seven topics for the conference sessions:

  • Hope for Leaders in Leadership
  • Hope for the Depressed
  • Hope for the Addicted
  • Hope for The Oppressed and Abused
  • Hope for The Suffering
  • Hope for the Grieving
  • Hope for the Anxious

The conference was attended by 61 participants, including 9 new attendees. In addition, four of those were a result of The Biblical Counseling Podcast. Those four attendees were looking for the sufficiency of scripture and an association to engage with. There were also a number of virtual attendees. Sessions from the conference will be available on the website. Please contact IABC if you are interested in purchasing any of the sessions. 

  • Dr. E approached his leadership session with The Book of Daniel and ended on 2 Kings Chapter 8
  • There are two examples in the Book of Daniel for reasons why Leaders Make Enemies. 1) They don’t compromise their faith in order to be accepted. 2) They show up just by their character, yet alone by how God uses them otherwise.
  • Jesus exemplifies servant leadership.
  • Check in with your local training center and directors and gather opportunities for further growth.
  • Be on the lookout for a number of new upcoming opportunities from the IABC board.
  • A special thanks to Pastor David Tyler, Pastor Shirley Crowder, Jeffery Pitts, and session presenters for their generosity in helping to pull together this conference.  
  • Scroll down and leave your comment below. Also, be sure to click the verses below to read them in their context! 

Resources:


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  • Ron Dozler says:

    Dr. Eyrich’s point on Leaders make enemies by not compromise their faith per Daniel’s example was great. It has been said you know someone is a leader because there are people following him, and also when the world and it’s system is against that leader. I love how the Lord puts the right people into speaking slots for conferences. I have seen this myself as I run a conference each year. Listen to the Lord as He directs the topics and sessions, than bringing all the right people to speak and to listen. God is Good, I enjoyed being there with my wife.

    • Esther Ambie-Barango says:

      Thanks Ron for highlighting the issues on leaders making enemies by not compromising their faith with the Daniel’s example as discussed by Dr. Eyrich that he climaxed in 2 Kings 8. He demonstrated that another reason leaders make enemies is that they show up just by their character, yet alone by how God uses them otherwise. We must be like Jesus that exemplified ‘servant leadership’.

    • Jerry Troyer says:

      Thanks for sharing that Ron. That was such an incredible point of wisdom by Dr. Eyrich. I am reading Spartacus in my free time (What free time?) since my son read it. In that book it conveys Spartacus leadership skills. He had enemies because not everyone wanted to follow his ideas. As you said so well, as a godly person, the leader will make enemies because they will not compromise their faith. Seldom do we have to take such action in this land we live in. However, each person, at some point will have to make a stand for their faith. Even in the risk of making enemies. So be it.

  • Tim Hoelle says:

    I’m drawn to the comment that concerns our hope as believers, as compared to those that have no hope, especially when we’re dealing with a significant loss in our lives. I Thess 4:13 “Brothers and sisters, we do not want you to be uninformed about those who sleep in death, so that you do not grieve like the rest of mankind, who have no hope”. There are a number of events which give us reason to grieve; the loss of a marriage, a traumatic or major physical injury, the death of a loved one or any number of other reasons. Grieving is hard enough as it is with Christ, I can’t imagine what that process would be like absent Christ.

    In a similar way, trying to relate to someone who has no eternal hope is extremely difficult for me as well. The idea that “this is it”, that this world is all that there is for those who are fatalists is a depressing and heart wrenching thought. Just as bad, or perhaps worse, are those that are less aware of what they’ve got in store are those who think going to hell is a macho thing to do, that there is going to be a party going on all the time. I’ve heard it said many times that for the believer this earth is the only hell we will ever know, and for the unbeliever this world is the only heaven they will ever know. What a tragic way to live, and even more tragic way to die.

  • Esther Ambie-Barango says:

    Great Podcast and I am particularly intrigued by the dependence of Dr. Eyrich and the members of the board upon God and His resources and this dependence is summarized in the words of Proverbs 16:1-4 (The preparations of the heart belong to man, But the answer of the tongue is from the Lord. All the ways of a man are pure in his own eyes, But the Lord weighs the spirits. Commit your works to the Lord, and your thoughts will be established. The Lord has made all for Himself, Yes, even the wicked for the day of doom.). No wonder, the conference was a huge success.
    I was greatly imparted and have resolved again to always look unto God and draw from His resources, committing my ways unto Him (Psalm 37:5; Hebrews 12:2).

    • Jerry Troyer says:

      Thank you for your comments Esther. Dr. Eyrich communicated a faith cycle concerning the conference as the board sought the Lord and His resources. Plus they became dependent on the Lord for counsel. Such a great lesson of faithful trusting in God as we resolve to make decisions to honor Him. Thanks for reminding me of the verses as well. He is the resource. We are His ambassadors seeking His resources. He is willing to provide them to us. Such a blessing.

  • Kristie Gallagher says:

    This weeks podcast was very informative about the international association of Biblical counseling with Dr. Eyrich. He told us about the annual conference that they had this year in St. Louis. The topic for the conference was Hope. Hope in leadership, hope in the depressed, hope in suffering, hope for the anxious- just to make a few. In a world that struggles with hopelessness this is such a pertinent topic. He talked about leadership using the prayer of Solomon and the life of Daniel. I liked what Dr. E said, two reasons why leaders make enemies. The first being because they don’t compromise their faith. Secondly, they show up by their character. He talked about in the first chapter in Daniel the secular king looked for 6 character qualities in the lives of the people he would use. Character is so important in looking for leaders.
    I’ve already listened to the teaching on hope for the anxious. Looking forward to listening to all the teachings from the conference.

    • Esther Ambie-Barango says:

      Thanks for your post Kristie and especially in Dr. Eyrich’s teaching on leadership using the prayer of Solomon and the life of Daniel. I was personally blessed with the leadership lifestyle of Daniel that just couldn’t compromise his faith to be accepted even though they had enemies by so doing (Proverbs 16:12 It is an abomination for kings to commit wickedness, for a throne is established by righteousness.).

    • Tim Hoelle says:

      I also appreciate the idea that strong Christian leaders do not compromise their faith and they are willing to bear the weight and consequences of that. They are committed to God’s standards above men. While that may not make enemies, it can certainly narrow the list of friends and colleagues. The comment that “leaders show up by their character” is spectacular. There are plenty of people that want the title and visibility and/or notoriety of leadership, but not the responsibility or accountability.

  • Tom Zimbelman says:

    A couple thoughts about this podcast hit home for me. First, the issue of how a Christian deals with both grief and suffering. These are two aspects of life that really cannot be avoided. I heard a pastor recently say (I think it was David Rosales) that life actually becomes more filled with difficulties the older we get because we have more time to experience the grief and suffering that is inevitable in this world. My thoughts while listening to the podcast last night were just that – the inevitability of grief and suffering – they’re going to come. Just this morning, my friend told me his niece was killed in a freak accident. We’ve probably all had tragedies. The man mentioned in the podcast who spoke at the conference, as Dr. Eyrich mentioned, had been placed their by God to speak from his personal experience. The Christian has tremendous hope, even in the midst of great suffering and grief. I think of Colossians 1:5, Titus 2:13 and Hebrews 12:2 about the great hope we have in Jesus and in heaven – it’s what pulls us through tough times.

    The second point deals with the issue of gaining enemies when we choose to follow Christ. A lot of people leave ministry because of its difficult road. It’s one thing to gain enemies outside the church, but when a brother or sister turns on us – that’s even more painful. The temptation is to bail, or retaliate, or become anxious. The Lord says to be of good cheer – He’s overcome the world (John 16:33).

    I am becoming even more grateful that Christ is sufficient in all things.

    • Ron Dozler says:

      Nice Tom. I have seen over the years, of those who are all in for the Lord and those who are in ministry, do seem to have more opposition and trials than those who are nominal followers of Christ. I have seen some may Pastors and their wives going through much tribulation. Our hope is in Christ and that He uses it for His purposes.

    • David Bowman says:

      Tom-
      I am sorry to hear about your friend’s niece. It is true that as we live longer, we will have more opportunities to experience suffering and grief. You are absolutely right to direct our focus to the Scriptures for the hope we need at all times, especially in difficult circumstances. I also appreciated the distinction that although the presenter suffered a great deal, it does not mean that we will receive full understanding of why things happen. This does not prohibit us from trusting in Christ, even while the answers elude us.

  • Josh says:

    The final outcome of everything is in Gods’ hands. but it is important to ask ourselves two important questions in regards to moving forward in areas of life; 1) is what I’m about to do in harmony with Gods Truth? 2) and will it draw me (and others) closer to the lord? We must maintain a delicate balance in all that we do. We must completely depend on and trust the Lord while working hard with deliberate, intentional effort and action. I’m convicted when asking myself do I completely commit my ways to the Lord in everything, daily? – My pride is a constant antagonist.

    • David Bowman says:

      Josh-
      I relate to what you are saying concerning our motivations and actions. I have often jumped into doing without considering the driving desire and expected yield from what I cam pursuing. Is it for the approval of others, the selfish desire to appear “spiritual” or in order to “earn” God’s approval?

      I am thankful for brothers and sisters in Christ that encourage me to examine my motives. God isn’t impressed with our outer appearance, for He sees our hearts (1 Samuel 16:7).

    • Victoria Santana says:

      I believe you are not alone Josh. I too struggle in this area of my life. Too often the question I ask first is, “Is this something that will benefit me?” Talk about wrong motivation. I find that when the rubber hits the road, I seek out God’s will but, it is my desire to change that first inclination to be for God’s will instead of my own.

    • Hannah Somerville says:

      Good point Josh. I often think about that too. We have the ministry of reconciliation. We want others to draw closer to the Lord. Yet, we do not want to compromise on the truth. Often times it seems all too easy to only focus on one emphasis or the other. All truth without love and grace becomes religion and legalism or harsh. On the opposite spectrum, it is not helpful or biblical to do whatever it takes to try to make people see God in a good light, such as when empty quotes are given such as you are strong enough.

      Lord give us the ability to walk and counsel in spirit and truth.

  • Jerry Troyer says:

    I was drawn to the comments Dr. Eyrich made about leaders. In particular the ones he made concerning King Nebuchadnezzar. Dr. Eyrich stated that Nebuchadnezzar had leadership skills. The story involved sending his chief eunuch to bring out some of the people of Israel well suited for leadership training. Nebuchadnezzar detailed six characteristics for the chief eunuch to search for within each person. They included, being skillful in all wisdom, endowed with knowledge, understanding learning, and competent. It is so interesting how God used Nebuchadnezzar to teach us from Scripture the characteristics of a leader. Another example of God using an unbeliever to deliver good counsel to believers. God using the unbeliever for the kingdom of God. Nebuchadnezzar only thought of advancing his kingdom and to have good counselors for himself. Now thousands of years later, Dr. Eyrich would use this example of leadership for the basis of defining Godly leaders. Not only that, Nebuchadnezzar’s example through Dr. Eyrich, has now taught us students at CCU about fundamental principals to look for in potential leaders. We have such an amazing God.

  • Kevin McClure says:

    One of the things that stood out in this week’s podcast was the passion of Dr. Eyrich. His faith and persistence to keep plugging away even when he wasn’t sure what God’s plan was for him was very inspiring. As he was speaking, it dawned on me how much behind the scenes organizational planning goes into some of these events. So many times, I show up to big events and I must admit that I’m not as grateful as I should be to those who have sacrificed their time and money in order to serve the Lord. This week’s podcast was a reminder that not only should I be getting involved in many of these godly events, but I should also be praying and encouraging those who have sacrificed so much to bring about any event, small or large.

    • Ron Dozler says:

      Kevin, I too thought Dr. Eyrich’s faith and persistence to keep plugging away was inspiring. I love when we meet and see those in the Body of Christ that are getting way up there in years but have not retired. Pastor Chuck for so long that example for us, he lived it right till the end, preaching and teaching on Sunday and going home to be with the Lord a few days later. Both men are an inspiration.

    • Hannah Somerville says:

      That’s great! I love that personal application.
      I recently had a similar experience, I met with a counselor. He and the receptionist blessed me greatly.

      Yet, I did not realize, the amount of time, money and resources that they spend on just one counselee, until months later, when I did my own research and on a small scale practice counseling. There was a whole prayer team involved in the counseling session behind the scenes, a test that costs hundreds of dollars, much preparation and prayer, and personal sacrifice to serve someone.

      Whether on a seemingly small scale or a large scale, work for the lord always takes a great deal of servitude, humility and sacrifice. At the very least I would love to be more appreciative of these servants of the lord, and join you in prayer and encouragement for them. Thank you for sharing.

      Thanks Pastor Jeff and Dr. E for continually blessing us!

    • Tom Zimbelman says:

      Hey Kevin,

      That is so true – we often take for granted the preparatory work that goes into these events that we enjoy. There’s often a lot of feelings of uncertainty, doubt, overwhelming exhaustion, etc. on the part of the planners. I like how Dr. Eyrich just kept plugging away, trusting the Lord to bring the right speakers for the right topics and the right conference attendees. His faithfulness paid off.

  • Hannah Somerville says:

    Something that spoke to me in this podcast, was that “Leaders make enemies, because they do not compromise their beliefs in the face of those who oppose them.”

    It does seem that nonconformity takes much bravery, since the culture does not like to be challenged.

    Leaders’ can realize that they will have critics and enemies because they are standing up for the truth, and not agreeing with the world. This is an encouraging word. I pray that Jesus works in me the ability to not be intimated, but helps me also to know the truth, so that I can be convinced and unwavering in spite of opposition.

    It was also encouraging that Dr. E chose a random man that he did not know very well to share about suffering and the man had been through tremendous suffering, yet, he trusted the lord and God’s goodness and plan. He is going forward to serve and share the gospel.

    Another man tells his story about grieving. His brothers were killed in a motorcycle accident. He shared 1 Thess 4:13-18 , a scripture that says : “we do not grieve as those who have no hope. ” We are those who have hope. ”

    All of his siblings and more came to know the lord. Praise God.

    • Victoria Santana says:

      How heartwarming to hear that a tragedy was used to bring people to Jesus! This perfectly exemplifies the hope that we have as believers! Even in times of tragedy there is hope for new life and for redemption.

    • Kristie Gallagher says:

      I thought that was a great point too, that leaders make enemies because they don’t conform to the norm and when they stand up for the truth. I love the book of Daniel and is a great backdrop for leadership.

  • David Bowman says:

    Dr. Eyrich displayed great dependence and passion for God in the organizing of this year’s conference. The four steps of Plan, Examine, Commit, and Depend illustrate the great need for our knees to be bent in the work of all ministry efforts. I am grateful for his transparency in allowing God to text the motives for the conference instead of being presumptuous.

    His points about Christian leadership were interesting. I have never considered that as a Christian leader there was an inevitability of making enemies. I do not welcome them, however it is to be expected since it was evident in the perfect life of Jesus.

    Suffering and grieving are not easy topics to address, but I was encouraged to hear how God brought the right presenters to address these topics. They were not just presenting theory, rather they lived out what they taught and that makes their message even more credible.

    • Victoria Santana says:

      I agree that thinking about Christian leaders as making enemies seems to go against what they stand for. But then when we think about the life of Jesus, it was his actions and what he stood for that made him the enemy of many. The bible also tells us that when we make a stand for Christ others will see us as the enemy. Probably the hardest thing to face as a Christian is this opposition because we are called to love all. I believe that the more we pray for, and engage those who are enemies gives us a chance to win them for Jesus by our actions.

    • Tom Zimbelman says:

      Hi David,

      I’ve sometimes thought about the ultimate reason for the desire for wealth in this life. I think it comes down to a life of ease and without suffering or grief. But, as Christians, the Lord says we will suffer for His name in this life. To me, though, suffering further validates the sincerity of our faith – why would we live for Jesus if inevitable suffering will come, unless Jesus truly is the risen Lird and Savior?
      Also, individual suffering and grief produces in us sincerity and humility which makes us more able to bring comfort to others who are grieving, as you touched on so well regarding the conference’s speakers, “They were not just presenting theory, rather they lived out what they taught and that makes their message even more credible.”

  • Autumn C Duncan says:

    Such a great update on the IABC conference. I look forward to listening to it! I liked the application of Daniel’s life that has principles: leaders make enemies because they don’t compromise their faith and they show up. It will also because you have Christian leadership.

    The Lord always bring the right speakers to conferences as Dr. E shared about how the teacher who taught on suffering share that when we are going through suffering, illustrated the way we deal with suffering by sharing his own story. He didn’t come out bitter but cam out trusts God’s hand in his family. It’s a powerful reminder as we are all going through something or coming out of a trial.

    • Kristie Gallagher says:

      That was so cool that the speaker that was chosen had experienced the suffering and was able to share from his own story and what the Lord had done in his life.

  • Victoria Santana says:

    What spoke to me was when they were talking about the speaker from the conference who had been through so much suffering in his life but was not bitter towards God. This is something that I think many Christians struggle with. We have an easy time trusting God and saying that, “He has a purpose for everything” until it is something catastrophic that happens in our lives or the lives of those we love. But, we have the example of Job to look to. While he struggles with his pain and grief, in the end, he is able to trust the Lord even though he doesn’t understand why he was caused to suffer so much. We are so prone to wanting to place blame somewhere when bad things happen but when we place the blame on God, we are forgetting our faith. We need to be able to trust God in all circumstances, even the bad ones. We need to be able to be ok with not understanding why bad things happen. We need to trust that God has a plan and a purpose to use everything that happens in our lives, even if it is just to show others that we trust God with everything in our lives.

    • Tim Hoelle says:

      Christians definitely struggle with the idea of suffering which is understandable really when we think about it. We are living our lives and making an effort to serve God, working through our “routines”, and when adversity comes our way we’re trying to figure out “why” or even “why me”. And yes we can rely on God quite easily when everything is going according to plan. I think that’s part of the issue, we are so focused on the plan, which usually is “our” plan, not necessarily God’s plan for us.

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