By Robert J. Tamasy
拒絕被過去控制。明白自己還沒到達終點，我們還有夢想要追求、目標要達成。一直執著過去，我們就無法前進。使徒保羅說：「這不是說我已經得著了，已經完全了；我乃是竭力追求，或者可以得著基督耶穌所以得著我的（所以得著我的：或譯所要我得的）。弟兄們，我不是以為自己已經得著了；我只有一件事，就是忘記背後，努力面前的，向著標竿直跑，要得 神在基督耶穌裏從上面召我來得的獎賞。」(腓立比書 3章12-14節).
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）
過去有甚麼回憶是你想要帶到新的一年？是美好值得紀念的時刻嗎？或者是你想要改進的地方？ 對新的一年，你有甚麼期待和想做的事嗎？ 你覺得要做到使徒保羅所說的：「忘記背後，努力面前」是一件簡單的事嗎？ 在聖經裡面，神承諾要做新事，把祂的百姓改變成為新造的人。這句承諾對你有甚麼意義？尤其是在你每天的生活裡？
A TOAST TO THE NEW YEAR – AND THE OLD ONE
By Robert J. Tamasy
Congratulations! In less than a week, you will have made it through another calendar year. Are you ready for 2018 to begin? What are your thoughts about the year that is about to conclude? Was it one of your better years, perhaps even the very best year you have ever experienced? Or was it a year you would rather forget, and are feeing glad it is about over?
Realistically, the move from Dec. 31 to Jan. 1 is simply the passing of another 24 hours. Yet for many of us it means much more than that. For some, there is hope the positive momentum of the past year will continue and build into the new calendar year. For others, it represents a time for a fresh start, new beginnings, maybe even a “do-over.” In any case, watching the last numeral in the calendar year increase by one typically offers renewed hope, along with expectations for good things in the future.
For many, this transition means both a time for reassessing what transpired over the past 365 days and a time for anticipating what opportunities, challenges and surprises might lie ahead over the next 365. I ask questions like: What went well? What could I have done better? How can I learn from the past for better results in the future?
Sadly, in many cases moving from one year to the next demands a lot more than flipping the page on a calendar. It sometimes involves feelings of regret, even remorse. Some would agree with author William Faulkner, who said, "The past is never dead. It's not even past." So, as we are hoping for good things to come, how do we deal with deeds or circumstances we wish we could undo, or at least remove from our memories? The Bible offers some helpful principles to consider:
Refuse to let the past be in control. Realizing we have not yet “arrived,” that we still have dreams to pursue and goals to achieve, we cannot move forward by continuing to concentrate on the past. The apostle Paul wrote, “Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 3:12-14).
Recognize the future does not need to duplicate the past. We can gain valuable lessons from the past, including our failures, but then we must avoid getting “stuck” by giving them undue focus. “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it?” (Isaiah 43:18-19).
Remember God has power to transform. “New and improved” is a popular promise for many products. Sometimes that is what we desire for ourselves, not just a minor touch-up or small adjustments, but being able to dispense with the old self and become a totally new, remarkably transformed “me.” For followers of Jesus Christ, this is the promise God offers: “Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come” (2 Corinthians 5:17). “…just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may walk in newness of life” (Romans 6:4).
© 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.
What are the memories you will carry forward from the past year? What were your happiest, or most rewarding, moments? Which would you like to forget, or do over? Looking to the new year, what expectations and hopes do you have? How easy is it for you to follow the example of the apostle Paul, who wrote of “forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead”? In the Bible, God promises to make things new, to transform His people into “new creations.” What, if anything, does that mean to you – especially in an everyday, practical sense?
NOTE: If you have a Bible and would like to read more about principles it presents, consider the following passages: Isaiah 65:17; Ezekiel 36:26; John 3:3; Romans 12:1-2; Galatians 2:20