Tuesday, May 28, 2024

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葡萄樹傳媒

你害怕什麼?

By Robert J. Tamasy

10月31日是美國的萬聖節,幾百萬的孩童
──以及一些男人和女人──穿上各種造型服裝,從卡通、電視人物到女巫和鬼怪都有。對許多人而言,他們的目的似乎是要看起來盡可能地嚇人。

然而,我們並不需要萬聖節才能經歷到恐懼。每一天的生活和工作就夠可怕了。不論是地震、颶風和海嘯的威脅,或是不確定經濟造成的憂慮,有許多事會讓我們害怕並焦慮。

例如,最近恐慌已影響到股票市場的劇烈上下震盪。不論股市在某一天是上升或下跌,通常與那時候真正發生的事沒什麼關係,而是因為所謂的「專家們」預估──或害怕在可預見之將來會發生的事。新聞報導,甚至謠言都會造成全世界的投資人恐慌、混亂。

我們每一個人有時都會經歷害怕。你最害怕的是什麼:可能失去工作?擔心事業急遽走下坡──或在事業走下坡後沒有反彈回升?一位同事被升遷到你夢想已久的職位?無法趕上一個厲害競爭者的步伐?失去一位重要員工──或無法雇用到一個適當的人來代替一個已離開你團隊的人?

當我們認清環境超乎我們能掌控,而我們不想要的結果卻逐漸呈現,恐懼可能就成為自然的反應。但若我們能有信心,相信環境受到那位總是為我們最佳利益著想之上帝所控制及引導,會如何呢?這是否會減少-或甚至完全除去──你正在經歷的恐懼?看看聖經談論有關恐懼的許多事,以及我們應該如何處理它:

我們並不孤單。當面對艱困的時刻或預期有患難時,我們最大的恐懼之一是必須獨自處理那困境。上帝已應許那些信靠祂的人,祂將會與他們同在,不論他們在職場、在旅途中、在家裡、或他們去任何地方。「你不要害怕,因為我與你同在;不要驚惶,因為我是你的神。我必堅固你,我必幫助你;我必用我公義的右手扶持你」(以賽亞書41章10節)。「因為主曾說:我總不撇下你,也不丟棄你」(希伯來書13章5節)。

在走過艱困時刻我們有一個嚮導。有熟悉我們所面對之環境與挑戰的人陪伴我們是令人安慰的事,就像一位牧羊人帶領他的羊群經過危險的地區。「我雖然行過死蔭的幽谷,也不怕遭害,因為你與我同在」(詩篇23篇4節)。

恐懼不是我們唯一的選項。
信靠上帝的保護與供應可給我們確據,無論現在或將來有多麼可怕,我們不需要被恐懼或灰心所勝過。「因為神賜給我們,不是膽怯的心,乃是剛強、仁愛、謹守的心」(提摩太後書1章7節)。「凡勞苦擔重擔的人可以到我這裡來,我就使你們得安息」(馬太福音11章28節)。

勞勃.泰默西是領袖資產協會的通訊部副部長,這是一個總部在美國喬治亞州亞特蘭大的非營利組織。他也是一個有40年經驗的退休新聞工作者。他寫過一本書「最佳狀態的商業:箴言給今日職場的歷久彌新智慧」(Business At Its Best: Timeless Wisdom from Proverbs for Today”s Workplace)。他也與David A. Stoddard合著一本書「導師之心:啟發人們將其潛能發揮到極至的10個原則」(The Heart of Mentoring: 10 Proven Principles for Developing People to Their Fullest Potential)。要了解更多資訊, 可上網www.leaderslegacy.com 或上他的部落格www.bobtamasy.blogspot.com 。

思想 / 討論題目
當你想到今天或本週在工作中面對的事情,什麼是你最害怕的事?什麼事會造成你許多個晚上睡不著? 你是否同意恐懼會對我們在職場中的決策發揮強烈的影響?為什麼? 當你覺得害怕,不論是在工商界或專業界或在處理個人或家庭的事情時,你一向都如何反應? 本篇「週一嗎哪」所提到的聖經觀點中,哪一點對你最有意義或最有幫助?請解釋。若你想參考有關此主題的其他聖經經文,請查看以下經節:
箴言3章5-6節,16章4、9節,20章24節;耶利米書29章11-13節;馬太福音8章23-27節,14章22-31節;希伯來書10章30-31節

WHAT ARE YOU AFRAID OF?
By Robert J. Tamasy

Oct. 31 marks the annual observance of Halloween in the United States, when millions of children – and some men and women – put on costumes that range from cartoon and TV characters to witches and ghosts. For many people, it seems their objective is to appear as frightening as possible.

We do not need Halloween, however, to experience fear. Everyday life and work can be scary enough. Whether it involves the threat of earthquakes, hurricanes and tsunamis, or more constant worries caused by an uncertain world economy, there is much that can make us fearful and anxious.

In recent days, fear has influenced sharp ups and downs of the stock market, for example. Whether the market rises or falls on a particular day often has less to do with what is actually happening at that moment than what the so-called “experts” project – or fear – will occur in the foreseeable future. News reports, even rumors, can cause chaos among investors all around the world.

Each of us experiences fear from time to time. What are you most afraid of: The prospect of losing your job? Worries about a dramatic decline in business – or not having business rebound sufficiently after a downturn? Having a colleague chosen for a coveted promotion instead of yourself? Not being able to keep pace with a very formidable competitor? Losing a key staff member – or not being able to hire a suitable replacement for someone that has already left your team?

When we recognize circumstances are beyond our control and undesirable outcomes loom, fear can become a natural response. But what if we could have confidence that circumstances were under control, being guided by someone with our best interests in mind? Would that minimize – or even eliminate – fear you are experiencing? Take a look at several things the Bible has to say about fear and how we should deal with it:

We are not alone.
When confronting difficult times, or anticipating adversity, one of our greatest fears is in having to deal with those circumstances alone. God has promised those trusting in Him that He will always be with them, whether they are in the workplace, traveling, at home, or anywhere they go. “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I still strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand” (Isaiah 41:10). “God has said, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you“” (Hebrews 13:5).

We have a guide through difficult times.
It is comforting to be accompanied by someone that is familiar with the environment and context of challenges we are facing, just as a shepherd knows the sometimes dangerous terrain where he leads his sheep. “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me…” (Psalm 23:4).

Fear is not our only option. Trusting in God”s providence, protection and provision can give us assurance that no matter how daunting the present or future may seem, we do not need to be overcome by fear or despair. “For God has not given us a spirit of fear but of power and love and self-control” (2 Timothy 1:7). “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest” (Matthew 11:28).

Robert J. Tamasy is vice president of communications for Leaders Legacy, Inc., a non-profit corporation based in Atlanta, Georgia, U.S.A. A veteran journalist for 40 years, he is the author of Tufting Legacies (iUniverse); Business At Its Best: Timeless Wisdom from Proverbs for Today”s Workplace (River City Press); and has coauthored with David A. Stoddard, The Heart of Mentoring (NavPress). For more information, see www.leaderslegacy.com or his blogs, www.bobtamasy.blogspot.com and www.bobtamasy.wordpress.com.

Reflection/Discussion Questions
As you think about issues facing you at work today – or this week – what is it that you are most afraid of? What, if anything, can cause sleepless nights for you? Do you agree with the view that fear can exert a strong influence in workplace decisions that we make? Why or why not? How do you typically respond whenever you feel afraid, whether in a business or professional context, or in dealing with personal or family issues? Which of the biblical perspectives on fear presented in this “Monday Manna,” if any, is most meaningful or helpful for you? Explain your answer.NOTE: If you have a Bible and would like to review additional passages that relate to this topic, consider the following verses: Proverbs 3:5-6, 16:4,9, 20:24; Jeremiah 29:11-13; Matthew 8:23-27, 14:22-31; Hebrews 10:30-31

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