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Pastoral Counseling Sessions

In August of 2020, Pastor Rick Harrington filmed five sessions of pastoral counseling in northern Vermont near the end of his sabbatical. The sessions are each about 20-minutes and cover the topics:I. GodII. MarriageIII. ParentingIV. WorkV. DeathThey draw on Scripture as well as on personal and ministry experience. Rick has a Doctor of Ministry from Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary and has been a pastor for about 18 years. We hope they’re of some benefit to you. If they are helpful, please leave some feedback. Feel free to use or share these videos, but we would ask that you do not alter the content in any way.
Session 1: God

Session 2: Marriage Session 3: Parenting



Leaving Las Vegas

I jotted down some thoughts after leaving Las Vegas and moving on to the next leg of our sabbatical. First let me say, there is a lot of good fun to be had here. I had a blast! The restaurants, shops, tours and weather are topnotch. Many people call "the meadows" home, and raise a family here. But, in this reflection I want to dwell on the doctrine of sin for a few moments.

Las Vegas embraces sin. It is literally called “Sin City.“ Prostitution is legal in parts of Nevada (though officially not in Las Vegas). Their slogan was (I think they’ve changed it now) “What happens in Vegas stays in Vegas,” suggesting to visitors they should go a little wild. Even Forbes published an article, Why Las Vegas is Still America’s Most Sinful City.
However, sin is not worse here, it is just more evident. What is veiled in other places around the world is brought out into the open on The Strip. And, when something is out in the open, it can be more clearly examined.

You would need to be bli…

The Old West Dies

Where the big sky touches the low green hills like a painter’s finished canvas,
And the dark-starred firmament canopies the crisp cool nighttime hours,
The rivers flow and the gentle wind blows on the fields made out of hay.
Nature rests as the horses play and the bison and bulls graze grass.

Then comes the crowds and the city lights and the Old West dies away,
The big gold arches and the tourist shops and the canvas washed away,
The natives wear suits and the great elks flee as the motels multiply.
A new day dawns, for better or for worse, and it’s here to stay for a while.

On the busy streets the jovial crowds drink at the newly minted bars,
Only a few will ask or consider at all what was lost and gone away.
The day is passed and the clock has ticked and the memory starts to fade,
And only a few will ask or consider at all what was lost and gone away.

Thomas Halyburton

I came across Scottish Presbyterian Thomas Halyburton in my study of the puritans. John Duncan called him a “minor John Owen.” Halyburton said on his deathbed:

“I bless the Lord that when I stood trembling under the terrors of God’s law, He seasonably saved me from despair by some discovery of the blessed way of salvation for self-destroyed sinners through a slain Savior; even such a discovery as made me resolve to part with all that I might have the field, Christ the treasure hid in it, and pearl of price. There is nothing I dread so much as a mistake in this matter. It is Christ only that will answer me and my case, and without Him I am undone; on Him—the efficacy of His sufferings, the power of His resurrection, and of His whole mediation, as revealed in the Gospel—do I build all my hope.”

The picture Is The Westminster Assembly by John Rogers Herbert.