Worldview Training is Important
Scott discusses the quickly coming The Case for Life Video Course with Leslie Segraves. She recently went through this course and shares ways that it has helped her to interact on the abortion issue.
Welcome everybody to the Case for Life podcast. We’re gonna have part two today with my colleague and fellow LTI speaker, Leslie Segraves. And Leslie, it’s good to have you back. Thank you for having me back. We talked last time about the international impact of pro life apologetics work and how that looks a little different than here in the U.
S. But I want to shift gears and have you back on to talk about the course we are offering very soon here called the case for life video course. You actually took that course and wanted to ask you about it and why the big question I want to answer is Why should a rank and file pro life advocate take this course?
What were your thoughts about the course going in, and how did that differ from what you thought when you finished it up? Yeah, that’s a great question, and I would say every believer in the United States needs to be a pro life apologist. We need to understand the arguments that are being made and know how to answer the arguments in a winsome way, in a way that moves other people’s thoughts.
And it is a worldview clash. And so I think one of the things about the course that I didn’t know I was going to receive was you did a whole section on worldview. As a missiologist, I love worldview and I think about it more in an Asian context of the different places we work there. But it was so fascinating to me to learn about the worldview in the United States and to be able to understand from an academic level, but to understand how the slogans that we hear, how they’re coming from decades of of culture that’s being pressed down upon us and passed down to us.
And so, for me, it was just, I think I came out knowing more. That I thought I would know, but I think the way that the class that what you had us do at the end, it’s almost like you can sit in a class and think you understand it, but until you have to try to get it out of your own mouth. You don’t really know if you know it or not, and so I think I came out with that last assignment being able to just grapple with the, with the materials myself from an academic standpoint, but then thinking how to get it down to where I can use it in culture in a way that’s not yelling at people, but in a way that helps people to just have conversations.
And I think we’ve lost that in America, how to have a just good discourse. So I think that’s some of the things I learned in the class. You know, you mentioned worldviews and you could not be more right. A lot of people enter into discussions on abortion, and they’re talking to someone and they think, what planet did they just stop, you know, step off of?
And the reality is, you’re probably talking to a worldview there. There is something radically different between your starting point and their starting point. In the West, I don’t know how it is in Asia, but in the West, the big players are Naturalism, which is the belief that the universe came from nothing and was caused by nothing.
Of course, that applies to the abortion issue this way. If every one of us is uncaused and unplanned for, then that means nothing has intrinsic value whatever its stage of development. Not a fetus, not an adult. Not a teenager, not, not the rat that’s running through your backyard. Nothing has intrinsic value.
Then another contender we’re dealing with right now is the whole idea of postmodernism, that we construct reality according to our own perspectives. And we often wonder, how can it be that you have two women standing next to each other? They’re both. They’re both 30 weeks pregnant and the one is talking gleefully about her baby and the, the reveal party they’re going to have and how they can’t wait to paint the nursery and the other one is thinking, this is a tremendous blow to my career advancement and you’re talking about two children at the same exact level of development and yet one is constructed her child to be a blessing.
The other constructs it to be a burden. And therefore, killing it is okay. And now we have a new contender. We have wokeness that has come into play. The whole idea that ultimate reality is nothing but intrinsic racism and all of society is shot through with intrinsic racism. And the only way women as a victim can overcome that oppression is through abortion, which I don’t know how it strikes you, but that really strikes me as odd.
It’s basically saying that women require special surgery to be equal with men. How is that a pro woman stance? I don’t know, but that’s where our culture is. What are you seeing on the worldview front, both in the West and in Asia? Yeah, I think that’s what I enjoyed about the class because I’ve dealt, and I’ve lived in the atheistic world, I’ve lived in the Islamic world, and I’ve lived in the Hindu world, so those are three different worldviews, but then also being from the United States and working in churches here and becoming aware of like the woke ism and the critical race theory and all those things that are going on, but I realized like in this naturalistic view that you’re talking about, That is alive and well in other places.
So in atheism, you know, because there was no creator, there’s no intrinsic value that anyone has. And so, um, there’s a lot I could talk about that and how we dealt with that stronghold in Asia, but I could go through every worldview that’s opposed to Jesus Christ in the places where we work and say, it’s.
Whatever these worldviews are, they, I mean, I would take it to the spiritual warfare part that these are all demons that are controlling these worldviews that are seeking to divert people’s attention and their understanding of a God who loves them and who died for them and who lives for them. So I think that the worldview issue, we have to understand it because I think here in the States, as I’ve gotten into some conversations and you hear things.
You realize it’s not the same country we lived in even 20, 10 years ago in some ways. And I, even my daughter who’s 15, she said, I think when she was about 12 years old, she said, you know what? She said, I can be a strong woman and I don’t have to kill my baby someday to be able to show I’m a strong woman.
And I thought that’s exactly right. Like women can be so strong and we can be career oriented and we can be children oriented. Just as men can do. Um, but I think that when Satan deceives us to thinking that a woman can kill, it really devalues women. That is, it says you re you’re required to do this thing so that you can be equal to men.
And I think that’s just a disservice in so many ways to women. Yeah, it’s like so many other things in culture. In the effort to elevate a so called victim class, we actually undermine their value with these secular cures that really don’t understand the intrinsic dignity of the individual person. It’s very, very disheartening at times.
What would you say to the person who says, okay, I hear you’re doing this course. That’s great. But honestly, I’m not an academic. How am I going to keep track of all the stuff I’ve got to read and study? Because I think you would agree, this course isn’t for the faint of heart in the sense that you can just sit back and chill.
You’re going to do some work in this course. But how did you overcome any kind of worry about the academic load? Yeah, you know, I just think Jesus tells us to love God with our minds. And so for me, that’s really where I started is like, okay, I see. Okay. For example, in 2022, the numbers are that there were 42 million abortions worldwide this year.
The now the World Health Organization is coming out with its 73 million. I don’t know how we had that much of a spike in one year, but regardless, 42 million, 73 million. This is a very large genocide. And so for me, I was like, I want to grapple with this issue because I know we’re doing the grassroots work, but I’m always wanting to find out what are the roots to the problem?
Where, where’s, I don’t just want to trim, you know, branches that aren’t doing well off of the tree. I want to go down to the roots. And so I would tell people who are thinking about the course. This is an investment into eternity. When you invest in this type of learning, you’re saying, I want to be standing beside Jesus and what he thinks is valuable and what he thinks is important.
And I think that the study that I did, even though I have kids and I have, I have a career. The study that I did, I just thought Jesus was standing, sitting right there with me. And I, as I would read the information, I would say, Jesus, how do we answer this? How do we, so my study was really a prayer of how do we take this really heavy material.
And take it to the street. Um, and I, I think that the course, if you go into it with the humility before Jesus saying, Jesus, I can’t grapple with all of this. And my big thing too, is I don’t have to understand it all to use some of it. And that’s a key point. Yeah. Yeah. I think there’s this sense. This is so true.
I think in our perfectionistic mode, we think, okay, I haven’t understood a hundred percent. Therefore I’ve utterly failed. And that is not true. And you’re proof of that that there might be things you didn’t grasp initially, but you were still able to use the material, not only here in the U S but in other parts of the world as well.
I think there’s also a sense that some people think, why should I spend money? Or invest financially in something that, that just ought to be available through my local church, what, what would you say to that? That’s a great question. I have a, I run a nonprofit also, so that’s always the questions that we’re grappling with.
What to give for free? What do we do to sustain the work? You know, I just think anything worth something. Cost us something. And for me, I just can sit back and look at the material and go, well, I didn’t have to find all these articles to read myself. I didn’t have to put this into a, you know, take these huge thoughts and distill them down.
I didn’t have to chase down what the people on universities are saying. It’s just right there in this material. And so to me, it’s just to give to something like this. There’s ways that we can cut things out of our budget at times. And so I’m just like all for that so that I can gain what I need for the case.
As I tell my kids all the time, you only live once on earth. You only have one opportunity to invest in things that matter for eternity. And so for me, I don’t even remember how much the course was, and we are in ministry, so we are not rolling in money. But to me, it was like, this is worth eternity. This is worth doing this so that I can help people in a better way.
Now, one of the things we do in the course to help you learn is we include Zoom calls, but beyond that, we also have what we call round table discussions at the end of each of the heady sessions. So that you hear myself and Megan Allman and Janique Stewart, also LTI speakers. We sit around a table and we discuss what you just learned.
How effective was that round table debrief and helping unpack some of these lofty notions? So for me, I think they were very helpful because what you did is you had someone else be able to express verbally what that all that heavy content was. So I think it was just a good wrap up. It was like, okay, here, he’s going to ask the syllogism and here’s Janique.
She’s going to be able to give that syllogism. And so I think that was very helpful. I always prefer to see written material and to read and to dive in. And so that was where I kind of, that was for me, my favorite part. The other was like the review of like, okay, they’re able to get this out. They’re communicating this.
Well, could I do that too? I would, I would have to try it. And I would say, you know, there’s a verse in the new Testament. It says, I believe therefore I’ve spoken. And that is the way I think you grow in evangelism is you. Keep telling the story of Jesus because you believe, and as you speak it, it firms up the belief.
It’s like it just kind of, and as you go to people who don’t agree with you, it helps you to grapple with the thoughts more. So for me, seeing Janique and Megan, Speak it out. It’s almost like worldview formation, even for them as they continue to practice getting it out of their mouths. And so for me, I enjoyed that aspect of it.
But my question the whole time watching them is, would I be able to get it out of my mouth? That was always the question. I think you’re doing it pretty well in this series of interviews. Yeah, uh, you mentioned your 15 year old daughter. Honest take here, not trying to prime the pump. Do you think a student in the high school level, like your daughter, could go through this course and benefit, or is it an overshoot for them?
Would it be the exact same material, or is there something that is a little simpler for that age group? It would, it, let’s just assume this exact course. And then we could talk about what we maybe need to do to make it more for a high school student. But one of the things I’m grappling with is, do we have a material here that can translate to high school students?
And if not, what do we got to do? Honest question, not looking for you to You know, hedge anything here, right? I would think for my daughter’s age, um, she’s a 10th grader and she’s busy with lots of academic courses in sports. This would be really heavy. Um, if it were where she was able to really feel like if this were honors level, so she was getting like that weighted grade and she knew that she was going in, I think, yeah.
Um, I do know that she’s starting a pro life group on her, on her high school campus. She just got permission. She’s calling it warriors for life because they’re good job, mom. Good job. So, um, and they asked me to be the, the, instead of a teacher sponsor, they’ve asked me to be a parent sponsor. So, um, but my daughter, the way she, she has a passion, obviously for women that are hurting her men that are hurting her, the babies, but she said, I want to really slant this group to be about where it helps high school students know how to speak and defend life with their mouth.
And so she’s going to do the things that help women and babies, but she’s also her when she wrote out her plan, she wants to have every month where we go over 1 big question and help the youth that come to be able to spit that piece out and then have role play. But what I’m going to do to help create this part is I’m going to use your big course and I’m going to find those nuggets of questions.
And then I’m going to distill down just because this is a club. This isn’t, you know, an academic credit class. I think getting it into my goal is that this class would be available in multiple high schools. And my goal is that the, that would not just be academic learning, but it would be role plays so that kids get to practice.
This is the slogan. Let’s have I will be like, I do this all the time with my kids. I pretend to be pro whatever it is that I’m actually against. And then they have to argue with me. Um, so I think if we could make it very practical to the high school level, I think it’s. I think there should be a passion to equip youth in this thousands of them in the United States, especially, yeah, one thing is, we have to get people to be able to do this because as the Roe v.
Wade’s been overturned, it’s been moved to the state level, but even then, you know, even when states are going to be leaning more towards protecting abortion up to 9 months or no abortion, you still have, you know, The regular people that are out in the marketplace and everyone needs to know how to discuss the issue because people are hurting on this issue.
That is so true. And you’re right, since the overturning of Roe v. Wade, which I want to make clear was a very good thing. But nevertheless, we’re 0 for 8 whenever the abortion issue has been put to the public since Roe was overturned. And the reason we’re 0 for 8 is not because our marketing isn’t slick enough, not because people are confused.
I don’t think they’re confused at all. They don’t agree with us. We have a worldview challenge in front of us that’s epic and we’re going to have to equip ourselves to engage, and you were right in what you said earlier, every Christian needs to become a pro life apologist. The days of thinking we’re going to leave it to Leslie, leave it to Scott to deal with this.
No, we all have to be prepared to defend our pro life view, make a case for life where God has placed us in our church, and that’s what we’re doing here on this podcast and with The release of the book coming out, and the course that’s going to be available very soon. Equipping lay people to make that case for life.
You know, you mentioned something fun there a moment ago about role playing. We have it, LTI, Dr. Zeke Diversity. It’s my alter ego, and I pretend to be a pro abortion philosopher from UCLA. There’s two reasons I did this. Number one, I got tired of watching the other side do a crummy job defending their own position, and I thought, I can do better than they’re doing.
So I went and read all their smart guys and said, I’m gonna make a smart pro abortion philosopher here, and then I go to a place like Summit Ministries or Christian High Schools, and in about 20 minutes I can totally destroy the students pro life view. Doesn’t take long. Wipe them out completely, then we rebuild them with better arguments, and they’re able to compete that way.
We’re gonna have to do things like this, and I think we need a new, uh, Dr. Zeke at LTI. We’ll call you Dr. Zeket or something, I don’t know, we’ll come up with a name. And we’ll have the funky glasses and all that stuff that you have. I’d have to go shopping, I think. Well, we’ll find a way to make you look the part, and, uh, we’ll have a female version of Dr.
Zeke that will be just as tough academically, because you have mastered their side, you do know their arguments, you do know who their thinkers are. And that may be something that happens as you grow in your role with us and start getting access to schools. And I want to take a minute and just remind all of our viewers, if you have a local Catholic or Protestant high school in your area, this is a woman you want to see about getting into your school, and we will do our best at LTI to get her to you so that she can speak, and you can call our office for details.
Again, you can reach us at prolifetraining. com, or through our social media sites, or scottklusendorf. com, whatever. We will work on getting Leslie to you, because she brings a valuable Uh, ability to communicate truth on the pro life issue, translate it clearly, and I think students have a lot of fun listening to her and engaging with her.
And I, I can’t say it enough, she is the brightest student I’ve ever had in class. took the material of the course and just made it work. She didn’t just learn, she put it into action, and that’s what the course is designed to help you do. Leslie, we are so glad you were with us, and I, I sure hope people will reach out and book you for events at churches and schools, and now that you’re a valuable part of our LTI team.
And by the way, you can go to our website at prolifetraining. com and see Leslie’s profile there under the speaker area. Be sure to take a look at that. In fact, that’d be a good thing to do today. Get, get familiar with her and her work and what they’re doing. She and her husband Chad are doing internationally as well.
And, uh, we’re delighted to have you on the team. Thanks for joining us. Thank you, Scott. And if I could show one quick story that I think will encourage people, it’ll take me 20 seconds. Go for it. When my son was five years old, we were standing at a Walgreens and evidently my husband and I had been talking about at some point pharmacies may provide abortion pills.
I’m not sure what he had heard. He was five years old. And so we were standing at the pharmacy waiting to get some eardrop medicine or something. And he all of a sudden had this look of distress all over his face and he’s like, mom, tell them. And I said, tell them what, and he’s like, you have to just tell them, I said, sweetheart, tell them what, and the pharmacist was watching this whole thing.
And it was an audit. It was a crowded little area. He’s like, tell them to never sell a pill that will kill a baby. And so out of the bowels of kids, five years old, but he was like trusting me to open my mouth because he knew he had something burning deep inside of him that had to be told, wasn’t sure how to do it, but he actually did it.
He said, just tell him to not sell that medicine. So trying to be, you know, disciple my kids on what it means to be courageous. And just to open your mouth. I looked at the pharmacist and said, my son is very concerned about the lives of the preborn and he wants to encourage you never to sell any medicine that can harm a baby.
And the pharmacist is like, y’all, I can imagine. So my thing is what you asked about the high school students. I think we do as parents and as church leaders and as children directors in churches, we have to figure out how to help the youngest. In our churches know how to defend the smallest neighbors we have, which are the preborn because they can do a really good job as well.
That’s so true. You know, I spoke to my daughter, Emily’s kindergarten, first grade and third grade classes at a public school on pro life because the teachers were stressing books and reading and it came out that Emily’s dad was an author. So all of a sudden I get invited into these classes and you know, you have to tailor your pro life talk for that audience.
But what I did is I held up a picture of my, or I held up my book and on the cover of the Case for Life book, there is, In the current edition, a picture of a child in the womb. And, uh, I said to the students, what is this? Now, keep in mind, these are kindergarten, first grade, third grade level. And no matter what level they would say things like, that’s a baby.
And I would say, were you ever like that? Yes, when I was in my mommy’s tummy, you know. They know this stuff. And then I would read from the Declaration of Independence, because they were studying that. I’d hold up a copy of that and say, it says that all men are created equal. And I would point to the child on the cover and say, including this one?
Yes, yes. And then I would, I very cleverly said this, I said, How does this child differ from you and I? Oh, he’s smaller. He doesn’t have a belly button we can see yet. I mean, funny stuff. And I would then say, is he, is he different in any way that would lead us to believe we shouldn’t see him as one of us?
No, he’s one of us. They know this stuff. And as I was listening to your story about your five year old, it made me think that, you know, kids have to be talked out of the pro life view. They have to be talked out of it by academics and elitists who are really out to have a war on reality, quite frankly. I mean, just think about all the stuff we’re facing in culture right now.
All the transgender debate, the debate over abortion. Follow the science? You gotta be kidding me. The left doesn’t follow the science. The left wants to deny reality, not affirm it. And we as Christians have a real obligation to not only convey biblical truth, but contend for reality. The reality of the child in the womb, the reality of a male female gender, the reality of man woman marriage.
I mean, all these things that were taken for granted as being real are no longer. So this is part of what we have to equip ourselves to engage and it’s part of what we aim to do in the course that we’ll be making available very soon. That course is coming up folks. It will be called the Case for Life video course.
Stay tuned, we’ll give you more details on it. Meanwhile, Leslie, thanks for joining us. Joy to have you with us. Thank you so much and take the class if you have the opportunity. I agree. Amen to that. Preach. Thank you everybody, we look forward to seeing you next time.