“Words create worlds,” writes Mark Batterson in Please, Sorry, Thanks. If so, the question is what kinds of worlds we are creating. Do our words give life or deal death (Proverbs 18:21)?
Batterson is pastor of National Community Church in Washington DC. More than any other city in America, our capital is a place of where people eat the fruit of their words, turning the nation’s stomach sour. And what happens in DC radiates out to every nook and cranny of America. Our public discourse is poisoned.
Please, Sorry, Thanks offers a different way—a loving way—of speaking. It is a short, simple book with a timely message. By saying “please,” we demonstrate humility in a self-promoting culture. By saying “sorry,” we open the door to forgiveness and reconciliation. And by saying “thank you,” we recognize that gratitude is the proper response to all the gifts of life.
Batterson closes his book with Cornelius Plantinga’s definition of sin as “culpable disturbance of shalom,” which is the Hebrew word for peace. If so, then as Batterson writes, “please, sorry, and thanks are the way shalom is restored.”
I highly recommend this book, especially to my fellow Christians. We often complain about American public discourse, then turn around and contribute to its toxicity. Please, Sorry, Thanks reminds us that there is a better way.
Mark Batterson, Please, Sorry, Thanks: The Three Words That Change Everything (Colorado Springs, CO: Multnomah, 2023).
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