Friday, April 12, 2024

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葡萄樹傳媒

促成試探的情況

By Robert J. Tamasy

你生活中最大的試探是什麼?在哪些領域中你最容易在個人和工作價值及標準上妥協?例如,憤怒就是常常存在的勁敵。脾氣暴燥的人可能會因為一點點的挑釁就爆發。而有些人則是容易扭曲事實--或說謊--尤其當這麼做可以在生意中獲利、達成交易或吸引一個客戶。

還有人與貪心或嫉妒搏鬥,對自己所擁有的或已達成的永遠感到不滿足,總是想要更多。而有的人在許多形式的性試探中掙扎,不論在職場上或其他地點。對他們而言,色慾永遠不滿足。

最近一位朋友告訴我一個英文縮寫可幫助我們解釋為何在生活的某些時刻中試探比較強烈。這個縮寫是HALT,這些字母代表 Hungry 饑餓、Angry 憤怒、Lonely 孤單、和 Tired 疲倦。這些情況會讓我們的弱點變得更難控制。

例如,當我非常饑餓時,我就變得更沒有耐心。當我開車時,我對擋在我前面的車子就很不耐煩。若是在餐廳內等候我所點的餐,我發現自己比較沒禮貌且較不諒解店家的遲延。我要我點的餐--而且立刻就要。

最近我對一個完全超乎我掌控的情況感到憤怒。我覺得生氣,因為我對那情況無能為力,而且我發現自己容易把那怒氣轉向家人。

我們都聽過--可能我們自己也經歷過--當我們獨自出差且覺得孤單時的一些故事。在這種時刻我們可能主動與別人隨意攀談起來,或者似乎單純地只是想找一個伴,但突然發現自己面對一個非常想違背自己原則的情況。

在過了特別忙碌的一天或完成一個困難且費時的工作後,因為非常疲倦,所以很容易與親近的人起衝突。所以當我們遭遇試探或任何HALT的情況時,可以思想聖經的以下建議:

不要將試探與實際做錯事混淆。被試探不代表失敗--至少還沒失敗。試探是呈現做錯事(聖經定義做錯事就是犯罪)的機會。聖經告訴我們,即使耶穌也被試探。「因我們的大祭司並非不能體恤我們的軟弱。他也曾凡事受過試探,與我們一樣,只是他沒有犯罪」(希伯來書4章15節)。

受試探時,我們應該尋求協助。有人曾說:「除了試探外,我可以抵抗所有的事。」許多時候對試探的正確反應不是僅僅努力去抵抗它。我們需要認清自己的弱點,並求上帝賜力量去勝過它。「他自己既然被試探而受苦,就能搭救被試探的人」(希伯來書2章18節)。

試探是人們在意識清楚下的選擇。有一個有名的喜劇演員在解釋自己錯誤的行為時說:「是魔鬼叫我那麼做的。」然而,沒有人可以強迫我們去犯錯,是我們經過思考後,然後決定是否要迎合那試探。「但各人被試探,乃是被自己的私慾牽引誘惑的」(雅各書1章14節)。

勞勃.泰默西是「領袖遺產協會」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」(The Heart of Mentoring)。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
你經常要面對的最大試探是什麼?你一向都如何處理? 為何試探常常如此難以克服或抵抗? 當你遭遇試探時,是否發現饑餓、憤怒、孤單或疲倦的情況會影響你回應試探的能力?請解釋。 聖經說耶穌基督雖然沒犯罪,也還是要面對試探。這意味著什麼?這與你適當處理試探的能力有關係嗎?為什麼?註:若你有聖經且想要看有關此主題的其他經文,請看:
馬太福音4章1-11節;哥林多前書10章12-13節;加拉太書6章1-2節;彼得前書1章13-16節,5章8-9節

FACILITATORS FOR TEMPTATION

By Robert J. Tamasy

What are the greatest temptations in your life – those areas where you are most vulnerable to compromising your personal and professional values and standards? For some, anger is an ever-present nemesis. Short-tempered tendencies can burst into full bloom with slight provocation. For others, it is the temptation to distort the truth – or simply to lie – especially when it would be to gain an advantage in business, make a sale or attract a client.

Still others wrestle with greed or envy, never feeling content with what they possess or what they have achieved. There is always the desire for more. And others struggle with sexual temptation in its many forms, whether in the workplace or elsewhere. For them, lust is never satisfied.

Recently a friend told me about an acronym that helps to explain why our temptations seem stronger at different moments in our lives. This acronym is HALT, which stands for Hungry, Angry, Lonely, and Tired. Each of these can make our respective areas of weakness even more difficult to manage or control.

For instance, when I feel very hungry, my natural inclination toward impatience becomes stronger. When driving my car, I grow impatient with other drivers impeding my progress. If in a restaurant waiting for my food to arrive, I find myself less courteous and less understanding of delays. I want what I want – and I want it now!

Recently I was feeling angry about a situation that was totally out of my control. I felt angry because of my inability to do anything about it, and found myself tempted to redirect that anger toward family members.

We all have heard stories – perhaps experienced some ourselves – of being alone on an extended business trip and feeling lonely. At such times we might reach out for casual conversation, or even seemingly innocent companionship, and suddenly find ourselves confronted with a very compromising situation.

And after a particularly demanding day or upon completing a difficult, time-consuming task, being tired can quickly insert conflict into relationships that I normally enjoy. So what do we do when we encounter temptations, or any of the elements of HALT? Consider the following counsel found in that time-honored book, the Bible:

Do not confuse temptation with actual wrongdoing. Being tempted does not mean failure – at least not yet. Temptation is being presented with the opportunity to commit wrong, which the Bible defines as “sin.” Even Jesus, we are told, was tempted. “For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are – yet was without sin” (Hebrews 4:15).

When tempted, we should seek help. As someone has said, “I can resist anything except temptation.” Many times the correct response to temptation is not simply to try harder to resist it. We need to recognize weakness and ask for God”s strength to overcome it. “Because he himself suffered when he was tempted, he is able to help those who are being tempted” (Hebrews 2:18).

Temptations require a conscious choice. A famous comedian used the excuse, “the devil made me do it,” when explaining wrong behavior. However, no one can force us to do wrong. We consider it, and then we determine whether to act on the temptation. “…but each one is tempted when, by his own evil desire, he is dragged away and enticed” (James 1:14).

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
What would you say is the greatest temptation (or temptations) you deal with on a consistent basis? What is your typical approach for dealing with it? Why do you think temptations are often so difficult to overcome or resist? Do you find any of the elements of the HALT acronym – Hungry, Angry, Lonely, or Tired – significantly affect your capacity for responding properly when you are confronted with temptation? Explain your answer. The Bible states that Jesus Christ, even though He was sinless, also had to confront temptation. What do you understand that to mean – and does this have any relevance to your own ability to handle temptation appropriately? Why or why not?NOTE: If you have a Bible and would like to review additional passages that relate to this topic, consider the following verses: Matthew 4:1-11; 1 Corinthians 10:12-13; Galatians 6:1-2; 1 Peter 1:13-16, 5:8-9

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