David Carlisle

Counseling and a New Outlook on Life

I started my career as a governmental accountant. Working for the Department of Education’s Office of Inspector General, I had my report findings published in USA Today, the Wall Street Journal and the New York Times.

Despite my success, I was languishing in an unfulfilling job and dealing with stresses in my marriage—stresses that took it to the brink of failure. So, I searched for and found a Christian counselor.

The counselor saved my marriage and changed my outlook on life. After marriage counseling ended, I continued individual counseling for a little over a year and became fascinated with counseling as a whole.

Counseling as a Career: From Flint to Fire

I left government for the private sector and became very successful as both a corporate executive and a consultant. At the same time, I was reading everything I could get my hands on related to counseling.

I got involved with many types of prayer counseling ministries and I began follow-up mentorships with those with whom I counseled.

I was told time and again that I had a natural instinct for counseling.

So, I followed it up with classes and seminars by folks such as Larry Crabb and Dan Allender. I began to teach how prayer affects emotional healing in breakout sessions at seminars and retreats.

Life Unexpected

After about 10 years of this dual-career track of accounting and counseling, I was suddenly forced into early retirement by a disability. These were some of my darkest days as I searched for meaning and purpose in my life.

I tried to continue my prayer counseling ministry, but I found it difficult. I didn’t feel I had anything to offer because I was so disillusioned at the time. I find it fascinating now that the essence of what I had taught so enthusiastically for years was at the time so elusive to me. I felt like a failure and a fraud.

Jumping Back in the Game with Both Feet

Then, my Pastor asked me to put together a Bible study on a particular type of prayer/counseling ministry, and I agreed.

As I started researching the class, the juices in my spirit began to simmer. I began to feel a renewed passion for counseling ministries welling up inside me. After several weeks of preparation, I was off and running again.

However, this time I didn’t have a dual track to follow. I jumped into counseling with both feet. I enrolled in a master’s program in Clinical Christian Counseling with the goal of being licensed by the National Christian Counselors Association (NCCA).

After some rigorous studying, I’m now a NCCA Practicing Clinical Member and Licensed Clinical Pastoral Counselor.

I believe that I have hit my stride at just the right time.

Thank you for listening to my story. I look forward to hearing yours, because each of us has a unique and important story to tell.