“Saying please is a dying art form.” I heard this from my coffee barista today as I went through the drive-thru to get a much needed afternoon pick-me-up. It really struck a chord with me because I was surprised by this sentiment. Saying please has traditionally been one of the first things we teach our children to say when they want something. Has the world tilted so far that saying the word “please” has now become an anomaly?
I pondered this for quite some time while I sipped my fufu cup of joe with whipped topping added for seasonal effect. It struck me as an especially meaningful comment to make in this season of caring for others, wearing our masks for protection, and thinking of holiday cheer. If we don’t say please now, of all times, when do we ever say it? Do people also not say “thank you?” Why wouldn’t we say it? It’s so easy!
In James 2:1-3, the Bible tells us “My brethren, show no partiality as you hold the faith of our Lord Jesus Christ…” For if a rich man and a poor man both come into your assembly…and you pay attention to the one who wears the fine clothing and say, “Have a seat here, please,” while you say to the poor man, “Stand there,” or, “Sit at my feet,” have you not made distinctions among yourselves…? To me, this is clear direction that we treat people–all people– with respect and the way we would want to be treated.
I just feel like it’s worth thinking about. As a society, as a people, we need to do the little things to make us all better. A word of thanks, a comment of please, a small smile to the passerby, they all will add up to make it more comfortable here. Nothing is owed to us, even if we’re paying for it. Treat each other better, it is worth it. Life can be hard, say please!