A ray of sunlight – pretty please

By Dave Henning / July 7, 2023

“A pretty please is like a ray of sunlight.  It’s far more effective than trying to get your way through brute force.  Not only does it win friends; it also wins enemies and turns them into friends. . . .  Instead of issuing decrees, you ask questions.  Instead of making demands, you make requests.”- Mark Batterson

“Or do you show contempt of the riches of his kindness, forbearance, and patience, not realizing that God’s kindness is intended to lead you to repentance?”- Romans 2:4 (NIV)

Mark Batterson concludes Chapter 2 of Please Sorry Thanks as he observes what happens when please gives people margin.  Margin to own the idea, alter the idea, implement the idea.  If people own the idea, the idea owns them.  But if people don’t own the idea, you end up doing a lot more managing than you want.  As an old saying goes: “A man convinced against his will is of the same opinion still.”

In 1853, English artist William Holman Hunt finished his portrait of Jesus standing at a door and knocking.  Most significantly, one feature catches the eye.  On the outside of the door, no handle exists.  Because one must open the door from the inside.  For God will not violate the free will He graces us.  Hence, Pastor Batterson asks if you knock on doors or knock them down.

In conclusion, Mark exhorts:

“Instead of trying to strong-arm people with gale-force winds, we should shine like stars.  Isn’t that what God does?  When God wants us to change, He shows us kindness.  If that doesn’t work, He shows us more kindness!  It’s reverse psychology — or maybe I should say, reverse theology. . . .

We turn the other cheek, go the extra mile, and give the shirts off our backs. . . .  That’s how we operate in the opposite spirit.  And when we do, it raises questions for which the gospel is the answer.”

When you seek God, the opportunity seeks you.

Today’s question: How does pretty please provide a ray of sunlight for you?  Please share.

Tomorrow’s blog: “Asking = an art form; pray it”

About the author

Dave Henning

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