Are We Afraid of the Truth?

Are We Afraid of the Truth- (1)

Lately at Equal Rights Institute we have been emphasizing the importance of showing compassion to people, listening to them, and loving them. Several of our followers have responded to this emphasis by asking, “Are you guys wimpy about the truth? Do you just go around giving hugs, making friends, and avoiding the hard stuff?” I think that’s a question worth answering.

tweet-graphic-4Here’s the problem: navigating conversations about abortion is tough, because balancing truth and love is tough.

Pro-choice people need to be told, challenged by, and sometimes even confronted with the truth. But we are not telling them the truth just to make ourselves feel like we’ve done our pro-life duty. We want to share the truth with them in the way that is most likely to get through to them, and sometimes that means being patient. Sometimes I spend a great deal of time just listening to someone, partially because I think that will help them to be more receptive to truth later.

I could just lead every conversation by saying, “Abortion is sin, it kills a helpless baby, you’re a sinner, you need Jesus, and you’re going to hell if you don’t have Jesus.” I think those are all true statements, all of which I’d like to get to during the conversation. The reason I don’t lead with that is not that I’m afraid of the truth or that I lack conviction, but because it’s foolish and short-sighted to just blast people with the truth, with no thought to how they are going to respond to it. [Tweet that]

To quote my brother Josh Brahm from his speech at the Students for Life conference this year:

“Can we stop treating people like formulas for a second and remember that they’re people, and that people have different needs? . . . Every conversation is a series of difficult judgment calls amidst prayer without ceasing. And I don’t think I always make the right calls. But I certainly don’t think I should run every conversation from the same script.” [Tweet that]

People that don’t agree with you aren’t gospel fodder. I’ve noticed this trend in Christian circles to treat non-Christians as projects to be converted or left behind. If I’ve learned anything this year it’s that those with different views might be the very people that save you. If all you’re looking for in friendships is how you can help other people, you’re going to miss out on how they can help you, and you might need that help more than you realize.

Douglas Westfall

The Students for Life club at Portland Community College is bringing Equal Rights Institute’s training seminar to Portland! Josh and Tim Brahm and Jacob Nels will teach and mentor you personally to make sure you get the most out of the day. This seminar is designed to train you to have productive conversations with pro-choice people, using the arguments and dialogue skills that will be most likely to change their mind.

001 ERI Training cropped web

NOTE: If you attend this seminar, you will be working with an experienced mentor who will help you to learn the concepts and be able to put them into practice. Because there is a limited number of mentors, there is a cap on the number of people we can effectively train at this seminar. Filling out this registration form is the ONLY way to guarantee a seat at the seminar. If we still have room left for more people on the day of the event, it will be first come first served until we meet our cap. If you’re planning to attend, please complete this form to guarantee a seat.

Training Seminar:

  • When: Sunday, April 19th, from 1 – 8 p.m.
  • Where: Portland Location TBA
  • Food: Lunch will not be provided, just snacks and refreshments as well as dinner.

Cost of admission: (pay at the door)

  • Portland Community College Students for Life Club Members: Free
  • College students, non-Students for Life club members: $10
  • Adults: $20

Scholarships are available. Contact Jacob Nels to apply.

Campus Outreach:

  • When: Monday and Tuesday, April 20th and 21st
  • Where: Location to be announced at the seminar.
Date: April 19, 2015
Time: 12:30 - 8:00 p.m.
Event: Equal Rights Institute Seminar - Portland
Sponsor: Portland Community College Students for Life Club
Registration: Click here to register.

Research Confirms Using Periods In Texts Makes You Seem Pissed Off

Elite Daily
May 17, 2015

I’m pretty sure some people will think this is pretty stupid, but I’m fascinated by learning ways that we can unintentionally miscommunicate with others.

The way that different uses of punctuation in text messages has been the subject of heated debate among several of my friends, but it now appears that researchers at American University have determined that the average person really does read certain things into the punctuation of text messages.

If you haven’t noticed this on your own, it’s worth noting, at the least, to avoid accidentally implying to your friend that you’re mad when you’re not.

Wanted: Administrative Assistant in Fresno


We want to hire an administrative assistant for Equal Rights Institute. This position will be part-time initially. We’ll be starting at ten hours per week and expect it will quickly go to twenty hours per week. It might eventually be a full-time position.

josh website transparent 3The purpose of this role is to free the Executive Director, Josh Brahm, up to do the things which only he can do, for example managing the staff, ensuring the organization’s goals are being met, writing blog posts, developing online training courses, etc.

The work will be split between working from your home and working from our office. As a result, this cannot be a virtual assistant. It will require your physical presence. Therefore you must live in the Fresno area. Your hours will be flexible.

New Speech Video: 6 Practical Tips for Having Good Dialogues

My speech from the Students for Life of America conference in D.C. has been posted! These are six practical tips for having good dialogues with pro-choice people.

Six practical tips for having good dialogues:

  1. Silence your inner monologue.
  2. Rephrase what they said.
  3. Find genuine common ground when possible.
  4. Acknowledge the horror of rape.
  5. Be intentional with your body language.
  6. Be willing to jump to another topic.