Life is difficult and full of trials and tribulations. God has made us fairly resilient and there are many things that we experience that we can mange “on our own” without professional help. If we are Christians, we know how to press into the Presence of God and practice the disciplines of the faith such as attending a local church, reading the Bible,  having fellowship with other believers etc. If we are not able to resolve our issues through the practices above and by talking to our Pastors, leaders , elders, or trusted friends, it may be time to seek professional help.

One indicator that counseling will help is if you notice that you are REACTING to situations instead of RESPONDING. In other words you become more upset than a situation would usually warrant. You may become TRIGGERED when something happens in the present that reminds you of something that you have experienced in the past. Counseling can help you identify what those triggers are connected to and what past issues need healing. Another reason to seek counseling is if you have tried over and over to change a behavior but you continue to fail in your attempts. A counselor can help you explore what keeps you stuck in behaviors that no longer serve you.

Christian or faith based counseling is providing professional counseling from a Biblical world view. All of our therapists, except our interns and practicum students, are licensed by the Arizona Board of Behavioral Health Examiners. We are consummate professionals who abide by the rules, laws, and statutes of the Board that governs us. We adhere to the ethical standards of our profession and meet our clients where THEY are. Although we are faith based, we do see clients who seek us out based on a word of mouth referral or because of our expertise in EMDR. They do not necessarily desire a faith based integration. We honor THEIR goals and value systems. The majority of our clients however , are referrals from churches, Bible studies, home groups, Christian schools and organizations .They want the safety of knowing that their counselor will never give them counsel that contradicts the Word of God. Our counselors are not just “counselors who happen to be Christians” but actually are “Christian counselors”. They seek the wisdom of the Holy Spirit in sessions and do not rely on natural wisdom and knowledge alone. They are available to pray with you, assist you with the application of Scriptural principles in your life and most importantly assist you in healing from those things that hold you back from being all that you were created to be.

A “top down”  approach to counseling is focused on the symptoms that a client presents with and attempts to manage those symptoms. The modalities are more superficial and present focused. A “bottom up” approach to counseling does not view the symptoms as THE problem, rather they are a MANIFESTATION of the problem.

Your counselor, therefore, will explore the root issues behind the symptoms and seek to bring healing to those. That usually requires “connecting current problems to past issues. EMDR is a therapy with a 3 pronged approach…We explore the PAST, to assist with the PRESENT so that you can move into your FUTURE in a healthy way.

Trauma informed care is where your counselor understands the nature of trauma and how it affects the client. Although an official definition of trauma is “exposure to actual or threatened events involving death, serious injury or sexual violation”, I prefer to define trauma as “anything less than nurturing”.

Another definition of trauma is “any experience that overwhelms or exceeds our capacity to cope” All of our therapists are aware of the effects of trauma on our clients and are trained to treat trauma via evidence based interventions.

EMDR (Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing) is an evidenced based trauma intervention, developed by Dr. Francine Shapiro in 1989. It is the preferred protocol for trauma treatment and is endorsed by the American Psychiatric Association, The World Health Organization, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, The Department of Defense, and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. 

EMDR is an 8 phase protocol that helps clients reprocess disturbing or traumatic events (past of present) by pairing talking about an event with bilateral stimulation. In so doing, memories become less disturbing and are able to be integrated into the clients life. We, at Christian Counseling Services, believe so strongly in this approach to counseling, that all of our therapists are EMDR trained, requiring 50 hours of education, practice, and consultation.

EMDR is an APROACH to helping clients, not merely an TECHNIQUE. Therefore, most of our clients will benefit from utilizing this approach. Your therapist, after assessing your presenting problems will develop a treatment plan and make recommendations regarding the appropriateness and the timing of this form of treatment.

While all of our therapists look through the lens of EMDR, we are equipped to use any and all interventions that are helpful to our clients. Sometimes we use art therapy, play therapy,  and sand tray therapy for our younger clients.

Some of our therapists are trained in EFT (Emotionally Focused Therapy), the Gottman Method, and Attachment theory to utilize with couples work. We all do a little bit of CBT (Cognitive Behavioral Therapy) although that is used to augment our EMDR work. We utilize DBT (Dialectical Behavior Therapy)  to teach emotional regulation, distress tolerance, mindfulness, and relationship skills. In addition, as trauma therapists we use Somatic Experiencing and IFS (Internal Family Systems) to assist with reprocessing maladaptive stored memories.

Your therapist at CCS will take a holistic approach to your treatment. In addition to psychological/ emotional and spiritual issues, we will be looking at physical factors such as your sleeping patterns, nutrition, exercise, hormones, and the effects of stress on your body. Many times, medication helps balance your brain chemistry so that you are able to effectively deal with the issues that arise in the counseling process. These medications are usually “lightweight” and have very few side effects.

Our therapists are not qualified to prescribe medication however we have numerous Psychiatrists and Psychiatric Nurse Practitioners we use as referral sources.

Because of the high volume of calls that we receive, we have a referral specialist who will help you find a therapist best suited for you. Sarah can be reached at 602 620 2874 or sarah@christiancounselingservicesaz.com

We are always accepting new clients. You may be placed on a short wait list. All of our therapists offer telehealth sessions which enables clients to get in quickly with a therapist who may be in a different geographical location from the client.

All CCS therapists are trained to offer telehealth sessions via ZOOM or Google Meet, two HIPAA compliant platforms.

Our fees range from $60/hr. for interns/practicum students (working under supervision) to $225/hr. for our Psychologist. Associate Counselors (working under supervision) charge around $115/hr and Independently Licensed Counselors charge between $135/hr to $160/hr. We have limited sliding fee slots available and all of our therapists do some pro bono work as a give back to our community.

CCS is a cash pay practice. meaning that we do not accept insurance. We recommend that clients check with their insurance company to see if their provider pays "out of network benefits". If so, we will make a super bill available for the client to submit to their insurance company for possible reimbursement.

Because we are a very busy practice with many clients on wait lists, we have a very strict cancellation policy. We require 24 hours notice to cancel an  appointment, otherwise you will be charged the full amount of the session. If there is a legitimate emergency, of course you will not be charged. It is possible that if you are unable to make it into the office for your scheduled appointment, your therapist will offer a telehealth session.

Once you are assigned a therapist, he/she will reach out to you via a phone call and/or email. You will be given his/her contact information at that time. We ask that you email your therapist if you want to discuss clinical content and text them for non clinical issues such as scheduling, notifying if you are running late etc.