你正進入福音禾場中

By Robert J. Tamasy

當你聽到「福音禾場」時,第一個會想到甚麼?我們常常會想到一個很遙遠的地方,一個完全陌生的外國文化,說著完全陌生的語言。但是你是否曾想過,其實福音禾場就是你的辦公室或是你下次要拜訪的客戶?

幾年前,我的朋友肯.強生成立一個事工,對象是企業家或是頂尖的CEO。他的目標是要幫助每一個成員了解自己就是職場的宣教師,宣教禾場可能是辦公室、工廠或是銷售的地方。事實上,肯給參加他基督徒團隊的每一個人一個小小的標誌,上面寫著:「你現在已經進入了福音的禾場。」

聖經裡面並沒有說,只有在教會或是福音機構下面的傳教士,或只靠奉獻維生的人才能傳福音。因此,職場上的工商人和專業人士,只要他們認為自己是跟隨耶穌基督的人就可以傳福音。

耶穌在他在世上最後的日子給使徒使命,他直接說: 「所以,你們要去,使萬民作我的門徒,奉父、子、聖靈的名給他們施洗(或譯:給他們施洗,歸於父、子、聖靈的名)。凡我所吩咐你們的,都教訓他們遵守,我就常與你們同在,直到世界的末了。」(馬太福音28章19-20節)他並沒有說只有教會或是福音機構才能傳福音。

在使徒行傳1章8節,耶穌也有類似的教導:「但聖靈降臨在你們身上,你們就必得著能力,並要在耶路撒冷、猶太全地,和撒馬利亞,直到地極,作我的見證。」這裡的全地,指的是當時的人所知道的地方。如果在今天,耶穌會告訴他的門徒說:「但聖靈降臨在你們身上,你們就必得著能力,並要在辦公室、鄰居之間、你住的社區,和你住的城市,或是到一個完全不同的地方,作我的見證。」

讓我們再次思考這段話。它說無論收入或是資源,我們都是耶穌基督的代言人,如同在CBMC裡我們稱自己為職場宣教士,傳福音不需要離開自己的職場專業,或是移民去別的國家。如同某一個有智慧的人所說的:「神要我們服事在我們身邊的人,我們無法服事接觸不到的人。」

CBMC有將近有九十年的歷史,期間有許多人認識耶穌基督,生命改變。當中也有很多人成為地方上忠心和熱心的福音大使,甚至是他們在旅行或做生意時也傳福音。若我們字面上解釋馬太福音28章19節就是:無論我們到哪裡去,無論神給我們甚麼樣的機會,我們走到哪傳到哪,因為我們原本就是要服事祂,傳祂的好消息的。

勞勃.泰默西是領袖資產協會的傳播部副部長,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」(The Heart of Mentoring

反省與問題討論

當你聽到「宣教士」這個字會先聯想到甚麼? 「不論職業和工作,我們都是宣教士」你對這句話有甚麼看法?「你正在進入福音的禾(職)場」這句話是否改變了你如何看待自己每天的工作? 「職場的宣教大使」這個名稱對你有甚麼意義?你覺得要當職場的宣教大使需要成為甚麼樣的人?或是如何行動? 你覺得當職場的宣教大使,會遇到甚麼樣的困難?要如何克服困難?

備註: 如果你手上有聖經,想知道更多和主題相關的經文,請參考:以賽亞書43章4節;馬可福音16章15節;歌羅西書4章5-6節;提摩太後書2章2-6節;彼得前書3章15-17節

“YOU ARE NOW ENTERING THE MISSION FIELD”

By Robert J. Tamasy

When you hear the term “mission field,” what comes to mind? Typically we think of a distant land, with people living in an alien culture, speaking an unfamiliar, even strange language. Have you ever thought about the mission field that exists right outside your office or cubicle, or the people you will encounter during your next sales call?

Years ago, a friend of mine, Ken Johnson, established a ministry to business owners and top executives. One of his goals was to help each member recognize that they were missionaries – in their office buildings, manufacturing plants, and sales territories. In fact, Ken had little signs printed that he gave to everyone affiliated with his Christian Network Teams. The signs read, “You are now entering the mission field.”

Nowhere does the Bible specify that the only people who qualify as “missionaries” are those under the direct authority of a church or mission agency, or that their income must be generated solely through charitable contributions. For that reason, a business or professional person working with individuals who do not claim to be followers of Jesus Christ can rightly consider himself or herself a missionary.

When Jesus commissioned His followers near the end of His time on earth, He directed them to “therefore go and make disciples of all nations…teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age” (Matthew 28:19-20). Nowhere in this command did He indicate this must be done only within an institutional, religious context.

Similarly, in Acts 1:8 Jesus declares where serving others in His name should take place: “But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” In saying this, Jesus was describing the entirety of the known world at that time. He was instructing His followers, “Tell people about Me wherever you go, whether it is in the office next door, your neighborhood, across the city, or in a totally different part of the world.”

Thinking about this, it indicates that regardless of the source of our incomes, we are charged to serve as representatives of Jesus Christ – what CBMC calls “marketplace ambassadors” – wherever we go. We do not need a specific call to leave our professions or move to another part of the world. As someone has wisely said, God wants us to get involved with other people where we are – because we obviously cannot serve God where we are not.

Over its nearly 90 years of existence, CBMC has seen many thousands of men and women come to know Jesus Christ in a life-changing way, and many of them have grown to become faithful and zealous ambassadors for Him not only in their own cities and nations, but also wherever they travel and conduct business. A literal translation of Matthew 28:19 is, “As you are going, make disciples (followers) of Jesus.” Wherever we go – wherever opportunities God provides take us – we are to serve Him and reach out to others with His Good News.

© 2017. Robert J. Tamasy has written Business at Its Best: Timeless Wisdom from Proverbs for Today”s Workplace; Tufting Legacies; coauthored with David A. Stoddard, The Heart of Mentoring, and edited numerous other books, including Advancing Through Adversity by Mike Landry. Bob”s website is www.bobtamasy-readywriterink.com, and his biweekly blog is: www.bobtamasy.blogspot.com.

Reflection/Discussion Questions

When you hear the word “missionary,” what words or images come to your mind? What is your reaction to the idea that you are a missionary, regardless of what kind of work you perform each day? How does the thought that “you are now entering the mission field” change your perception of or attitude toward the people you encounter over the course of working each day? The term “marketplace ambassador” has been mentioned? What does that mean to you? What would it look like for you to become – and act like – a marketplace ambassador? As you think about it, what kinds of obstacles come to your mind when considering serving as a missionary in the business and professional world? How can those obstacles be overcome?

NOTE: If you have a Bible and would like to read more about principles it presents, consider the following passages: Isaiah 43:4; Mark 16:15; Colossians 4:5-6; 2 Timothy 2:2-6; 1 Peter 3:15-17

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