In this ground-breaking book, pastoral counselor Andrew Lester demonstrates that pastoral theology (as well as social and behavioral sciences) has neglected to address effectively the predominant cause of human suffering: a lack of hope, a sense of futurelessness.
Lester examines the reasons that pastoral theology and other social and behavioral sciences have overlooked the importance of hope and despair in the past. He then offers a starting point for the development of addressing these significant dimensions of human life. He provides clinical theories and methods for pastoral assessment of and intervention with those who despair. He also puts forth strategies for assessing the future stories of those who despair and offers a corrective to these stories through deconstruction, reframing, and reconstruction.
This book will be invaluable to pastoral caregivers who are looking for a vantage point from which to provide care and to pastoral theologians who are seeking to develop a theological lens through which to understand the human condition.