• (314) 428-2600

Speaking the Truth in Love: How to Be an Assertive Christian

The Purpose of This Book

This book invites the reader to live assertively—just as Jesus did. Building on a scriptural understanding of assertive living, the reader learns how to build healthy relationships with others—one to one, in small groups, in task-oriented teams, and in congregations.

This deeply spiritual and extremely practical book makes clear:

  • What assertiveness is (and isn’t)

  • The Biblical foundation for assertiveness

  • What makes Jesus our model for living assertively

  • How to be assertive in prayer and praise

  • How to relate to others with greater honesty, compassion, and respect

  • How to make, refuse, and negotiate requests

  • How to express and receive compliments

  • How to handle criticism, anger, and other tough relational issues

Assertiveness Inventory

The reader begins by taking an “Assertiveness Inventory” to determine when and where he or she is likely to be passive, aggressive, or assertive. The outcome can guide the reader to areas in his or her relationships where this book can be most beneficial.

What Readers Are Saying about Speaking the Truth in Love

Read what pastors and church staff are saying.

“I like to use this book when I do premarital counseling—especially with couples where one person is struggling with assertiveness.”

Pat | Garden City, KS

“As a counselor who deals a lot with conflict resolution, I’ve found this book to be the best. We are now using it for staff continuing education.”

Sallie | Highlands Ranch, CO

“We work with a lot of seniors facing a variety of life situations. This book is a valuable guide for our leaders as they help seniors find ways to cope.”

Betty | Sun City, AZ

Look at quotes from readers.

“This book was a wedding gift. It’s helped my husband and me deal with those thorny issues couples face during the first year of marriage—issues like how to handle the holidays.”

“My work supervisor has noticed a difference since I read this book. My last evaluation noted that I speak more clearly and more confidently during team meetings.”

“I typically hide my creative ideas out of fear. This book gave me the courage to share those ideas.”

“This book has been like a file smoothing my rough edges.”

“My teenager said, ‘Mom, you’ve changed. What’s up?’ I smiled and said, ‘I’ve been learning how to speak the truth with love.’”

“My high school environment is tough. This book has helped relate to others in a way that reflects my Christian values.”

Learn More

Frequently Asked Questions

Apart from Stephen Ministers, who reads Speaking the Truth in Love?

While all Stephen Ministers read Speaking the Truth in Love in their training, a great many people read it for their own personal development and spiritual growth, applying its wisdom and insight to their lives.

Do people ever give this book as a gift?

Yes. People have told us that they’ve given Speaking the Truth in Love on occasions such as:

  • confirmation

  • becoming a member of a congregation

  • adult baptism or public confession of faith

  • completion of the Rite of Christian Initiation for Adults (Catholic)

  • preparation for a mission trip

  • marriage

Do people use Speaking the Truth in Love in book study groups?

Yes. People gather to discuss this book in many different settings, such as:

  • adult Christian education classes

  • academic classes (ministry, counseling, and other areas)

  • study groups within the Fellowship of Christian Athletes

  • Christian book clubs

  • small groups that focus on Christian living

  • groups that meet regularly following a spiritual formation event—such as Via de Cristo, Walk to Emmaus, Cursillo, or Tres Dias

Can Speaking the Truth in Love be used in a sermon series?

Yes. Pastors have made this book available to their entire congregation to prepare for a sermon series about Christian relating—possibly during Lent or during the time of year the congregation emphasizes discipleship. One pastor called this series “Be Like Jesus—Speak the Truth in Love.”

Do pastors use this book with couples who plan to marry?

Yes. Some pastors give this book to a couple when they first arrive for premarital preparation counseling sessions; then, at subsequent meetings, they discuss portions of it with the couple.

How might governing boards use this book?

Sometimes a governing board:

  • asks board members to read this book prior to a retreat that focuses on how they can relate to and work with one another more effectively

  • gives this book to new board members, helping them understand that this way of relating is vital to the mission of the board

  • holds a group study of this book over multiple monthly meetings

What other books do you offer that would help me relate more effectively?