Speaking the Truth in Love - Coming in January!

Speaking the Truth in Love - Coming in January!

Author: Rev. Nikki Perrine Passante
November 05, 2020

I am writing to you early in the morning on Day #3 of the presidential election. I am NOT going to talk about anything related to the election, to the current state of affairs in our country, et al.  

What I want is for us to focus on the things that we can control. And the only thing we can control, is how we behave.  

Beginning Wednesday, January 6th, at 7:30 pm, I will begin teaching and facilitating a 14-session class via Zoom, entitled, “Speaking the Truth in Love: How to Be an Assertive Christian,” based on the book by Rev. Dr. Kenneth C. Haugk, founder and Executive Director of Stephen Ministries, and Ruth Koch.

Why is this so important?

Learning how to be an assertive Christian means that:

  1. You will notice a pleasant change in your friendships brought about by your enhanced self-confidence and newfound ability to express your own preferences and to honor the choices of others
  2. You will reduce aggressive, dominating, and passive behaviors you might have, because you will learn how to express your own needs without giving offense, playing the victim, or having to make a show of power
  3. You will learn how to allow God’s power to be the most important factor in unifying your life and personality.

This course is based on three principles:

  1. That individuals are response-able
  2. That people continually make choices
  3. That God will direct you as you learn to think and behave assertively

This will be the 6th time I have offered this class, both to the public and to churches. Without question or exception, I have watched as people have strengthened and improved their relationships with God and with others, all while developing a healthy love of self. Fourteen weeks seem like a long time, though in the context of trying to change unhealthy behaviors that we’ve engaged in and protected for the duration of our lifetime, this is but a primer. I’ve watched our lives and the lives of those around us change dramatically for the better when we learn how to take responsibility for our own behavior. Yet several things will be required.

The class will require a level of vulnerability and a willingness to self-disclose. The first session on January 6th will consist of opening comments, questions, and an ‘Assertiveness Inventory,’ which will help participants assess where they are at in terms of interpersonal interactions: whether a majority of interactions are passive, aggressive, passive-aggressive, or assertive. This inventory is important as it will help point out personal growing edges to pay attention to during our sessions together, and also during our lifetimes. Your responses will not be shared with myself or the group. Each session will provide Biblical Background and Scriptures for Meditation.

Topics include, but are not limited to:

  • What is Assertiveness?
  • How Jesus Lived Assertively
  • Techniques of Assertiveness
  • What to Say and Do when you want to be Assertive
  • How to Make Requests
  • Verbal & Non-Verbal Cues/Body Language
  • Granting, Refusing, or Negotiating Requests
  • Offering and Receiving Criticism
  • Exposing, Expressing, and Receiving Anger
  • Living your faith consistently and authentically

This class is highly recommended for:

  • Anyone who communicates!
  • Church Officers (Deacons, Elders)
  • Church Staff
  • Persons interested in Stephen Ministry
  • Anyone interested in improving their lives with one another, and with God.

Purchasing the book isn’t required, but it will be a huge boon to your development. I will be purchasing copies of the book in bulk and will have those available in the coming weeks for a nominal fee. If you would prefer to purchase the book yourself, I would ask that you purchase it directly through Stephen Ministries.

In the meantime, if you have any questions or comments, please send them to me. I’m always happy to share more about the tools available to us when we partner with God to make positive changes in our lives, to God’s Glory and to the benefit of all those around us.

In Christ,



First Presbyterian Church


20 King's Highway East, Haddonfield, NJ 08033
(856) 429-1960