- Selah truly integrates spiritual and psychological healing throughout our program. We offer these specific focused groups: chapel, Selah group, and worship time.
- We encourage emotional and spiritual growth in an environment of love that cultivates a relationship with God, not religiosity.
- Although our staff is largely Christian-based, our goal is to be a safe place for women to explore the truth of who they are and who God is without feeling pressured to believe a certain way. Women from a variety of faiths and backgrounds have been through our program and felt respected and comfortable.
Spiritual Beliefs and the Eating Disorder Client
The Spiritual Approach of the Selah House
At Selah House, we want to be intentional in addressing the whole person. Along with individual therapy and group therapy sessions, art therapy, writing group, equine therapy, psychiatric care, dietary and nutritional care, etc. we also believe in giving time to address common spiritual issues that many women in our program need to work through.
Richards et al (1997) lists the following as common spiritual issues that patients with eating disorders such as bulimia or anorexia face:
- Negative images or perceptions of God
- Feelings of spiritual unworthiness and shame
- Fear of abandonment by God
- Guilt or lack of acceptance of sexuality
- Reduced capacity to love and serve
- Difficulty surrendering and having faith
- Dishonesty and deception
We utilize this research to help guide us towards a holistic therapeutic approach, which includes one’s spirituality. We intentionally have chapel each week. Chapels are led by staff and these seven common issues aid in the direction of these facilitations. In addition to chapels, we also have a spirituality group, in which clients process core assignments that address these seven issues. For example, we have an assignment where clients articulate and conceptualize their image of God, especially any negative or shaming images that they hold. Images are conceptualized through journaling, drawing, painting, collage, story-telling, pictures, etc. They are encouraged to process which beliefs support and impede their recovery and then are encouraged to reform any beliefs that do impede recovery.
Richards, P.S., Hardman, R. K., Frost, H.A., Berrett, M.E., Clark-Sly, J.B., & Anderson, D.K. (1997). Spiritual Issues and Interventions in the Treatment of Patients with Eating Disorders. Eating Disorders: Journal of Treatment and Prevention, 5, 261-279.