Friday, October 05, 2007

Toni Trueblood On Life After Pain

Join me for the next couple of days as we chat with the ever lovable, bright and multi-tasking Christian counselor Toni Trueblood from 94.9 KLTY radio.

Sarah:

Hi, Toni!

Toni:

Sarah! Hi!

Sarah:

You have a world-class laugh. So, is the glass half full or half empty? (I think I know the answer to this one...)

Toni:

It is totally full because things aren’t always they way they look! (What do you think of that? Ha!)

Sarah:

Oh, good answer!

OK, Toni... many of us know you as the cheerful voice on 94.9 KLTY radio here in Dallas. I know you're deep into a new counseling practice as well. Are you switching gears? Or just doing some serious juggling?

Toni:

Some juggling...

Sarah:

Also speaking at women's conferences... and you've written a book?

Toni:

Yes, that too! I'm still on 94.9 KLTY, but in a special appearance capacity.

Sarah:

Tell us about your counseling focus.

Toni:

Why thank you for asking! I'm a Christian counselor affiliated with the Center for Christian Counseling. Right now I’m in the Flower Mound office, but I’d love to find my own office near Irving where I live. My clients mostly come from churches but some come by word-of-mouth.

Sarah:

How would you headline what you do?

Toni:

My basic message is... There is a healthier life past the pain.

Sarah:

That's huge... getting people from pain to a better life. How do you approach this?

Toni:

My counseling is better described as “personal discipleship" and it's totally rooted in God’s Word. I developed a therapy called “Toni’s Toolbox Therapy.”

Sarah:

How does it work?

Toni:

It works like this... You are the overall project with the goal of becoming more like Christ. I target the heart, not the symptoms. And through this therapeutic process, your depression, anxiety, trauma, etc. are effectively dealt with... along with the obstacles and other impediments that inevitably surface along the way.

Every person is a unique creation of God... and needs his or her own "toolbox," from which to draw when a challenge presents. Ultimately, God has the answer... I just work with you to find it. It's personal discipleship!

Sarah:

You've poured your passions into a couple very specific areas...

Toni:

Yes! One area is "Women’s Issues." We are special creations of God! Our challenges as women are very much the same. I've personally been through some pretty big stuff. I wrote a book a few years ago about the event that God used to finally get me back to him totally broken, so He could launch me seriously on the road to being an instrument for His purpose. (By the way, I believe that purpose is to get His Word into peoples’ lives for transformation!)

Sarah:

What's the name of your book?

Toni:

It’s called Hey God! Looking for Love Here!

Sarah:

Hmmm... do you want to give us a little teaser?

Toni:

OK... I was left at the altar twice by the same man. I seriously wanted to die. My story is about how God took me from that point... to dumping a successful media career... to Dallas Theological Seminary to obtain a Masters in Biblical Counseling... to where I am now. Point is: how you can move on past the pain, too!

Sarah:

Two words come to mind: "His loss." I'm sorry, Toni.

Toni:

Wow, thanks for defending me! But actually I see it as a “God-allowed backhanded blessing.” I was struggling to survive the painful and humiliating blows, wondering what in the world was happening to me. It was a deep, dark place. Darker and deeper than anywhere I had ever been before (I was 43 then). That’s where He met me. Right there, and in a cosmic “snap,” my focus turned from myself to God. He surely used it for my good!

Sarah:

Cosmic "snap..." what a great descriptor. I'm so glad that you have this wise, spiritual perspective on your pain. I know you're helping so many people today by your example. Thank you for that, Toni.
So, "women's issues" are obviously close to your heart... what else?

Toni:

My other specialty is "Pet Grief Therapy." I'm the only therapist I know of in the Dallas/Fort Worth area doing it. The therapy is not counseling or support, it goes way past that...

Come back soon for more of my interview with Toni Trueblood! Next up: insights into healthy grieving for those who've lost a beloved pet.

Visit Toni's website here: http://www.tonitrueblood.com/

On my iPod... Dreaming with a Broken Heart by John Mayer

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