Saturday, April 20, 2024

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葡萄樹傳媒

長期工作的報酬

在我們工作的生涯中,我們可以設定許多目標,但對許多人而言,在65歲退休(若有可能,要更早)似乎是最重要的目標。當經濟重創投資人的退休準備金,許多即將退休的人發現需要大幅調整他們的計畫。

然而,無數工商專業人士每天開始工作時,就渴望退休的日子趕快來到。這樣他們就能過比較悠閒的日子,不必再面對公司的壓力和每天最後期限的催逼。當退休日來到,許多人就可以選擇打高爾夫球、園藝或旅行作為他們生活的重心。

當他們開始退休生活時,他們已累積多年的經驗與智慧。這就是為何許多電視和報紙報導美國堪薩斯州昆特市的華道.麥克貝尼先生令人眼睛一亮的成就。

麥克貝尼先生被選為2006年美國年紀最大的工作者--104歲!他的工作生涯從馬車時代到電腦時代。他的第一份有薪工作是在1915年當他13歲時,他牽一隊馬匹去拉打麥機。在1950年代他開始一個清洗種子的事業,他經營此事業直到91歲。

然而,他沒有在那時退休。他把多年養蜜蜂的嗜好轉變成另一個事業,開始賣蜂蜜。最後在2008年他賣掉這事業,承認自己應該要「放慢腳步」。然後在當年7月過世,享壽106歲,留下豐富且光榮的工作遺產。

顯然,麥克貝尼先生並非為了生計而繼續工作。他還有其他的興趣,例如他從小就喜歡跑步。在65歲他還做長距離跑步,他甚至參加老人奧林匹克運動會、世界先進運動會和其他競賽,在田徑場上得過10面金牌。他繼續參加賽跑直到2004年。當年他也寫下他的自傳,書名是:我的前100年:從終點回頭看。

麥克貝尼先生並沒有過奢華的生活,他通常都從家裡走過幾條街去市中心的辦公室上班。他有足夠的退休金去舒服地退休,但他看到工作的價值,並且也在工作中得到極大的樂趣。悠閒地坐在搖椅上,在花園裡輕鬆地種些花草,或到公園散步,顯然對他都沒什麼吸引力。

所羅門王被譽為史上最有智慧的人。當他在寫傳道書5章19-20節時,可能就是指麥克貝尼先生:「神賜人資財豐富,使他能以吃用,能取自己的分,在他勞碌中喜樂,這乃是神的恩賜。他不多思念自己一生的年日,因為神應他的心使他喜樂」。

在傳統的65歲退休後,把上帝賜你的能力與才幹用在你所喜歡的工作上,這會讓你的心充滿喜樂。下定決心不要在你晚年錯過了上帝所賜的最好禮物。

思想 / 討論題目
你是否已定好退休計畫?你想要何時退休?你要如何使用退休後的時間? 你對華道.麥克貝尼的故事有何看法? 繼續工作與退休各有何優缺點?若你還年輕,離退休還有許多年,麥克貝尼先生的例子會如何影響你的看法? 除了在65歲(或更晚)退休外,你還有其他選擇嗎?若你不留在目前的工作,根據你多年累積的技能與經驗,你還可以從事什麼其他的職業?註:若你有聖經且想要看有關此主題的其他經文,請看:
民數記8章23-26節;箴言10章4節,12章24節,18章9節;傳道書11章6節,12章13-14節;提摩太後書2章20-21節

THE REWARDS OF A VERY LONG CAREER
By: Rick Boxx

We can set numerous goals over the course of our working careers, but for a lot of people, retirement by the age of 65 – or earlier, if possible – seems to be foremost. Of course, with the economy having dealt a devastating blow to the retirement accounts of millions of investors, many prospective retirees have found it necessary to adjust their plans substantially.

Nevertheless, countless business and professional people commence every workday yearning for the day when they can pack up their offices for the final time and begin a life of relative leisure, without having to deal with corporate pressures and daily deadlines. When that appointed moment arrives, many of them will choose activities like golf, gardening, or travel to be the new focal point of their time and energy.

In the process of embarking on a new phase of their lives, however, they leave behind years of wisdom and expertise. That’s why the story of Waldo McBurney of Quinter, Kansas, U.S.A., who became the subject of TV profiles and numerous newspaper articles, seemed so refreshing.

Mr. McBurney was designated America’s oldest worker in 2006 – at the age of 104! His working career had literally spanned the age of horse-drawn buggies to the computer age. His first paying job came at age 13, in 1915, when he guided a team of horses pulling a wheat thrasher; in the 1950s he started a seed-cleaning business, an enterprise he maintained until he was 91 years old.

At that point, however, instead of retiring, he turned his decades-old hobby of beekeeping into another business, selling honey. Finally in 2008 he sold his business, conceding it was time to “slow down.” He died in July, at the age of 106, having compiled a rich and honorable legacy of work.

Apparently, Mr. McBurney did not continue working out of necessity. There were other interests. For instance, he had enjoyed running since childhood, and at 65 took up long-distance running. He even competed in the Senior Olympics, the World Masters and other competitions, winning 10 gold medals in track and field events. He continued to participate in running events until 2004, when he wrote his autobiography, My First 100 Years: A Look Back from the Finish Line.

Mr. McBurney did not live a lavish lifestyle, usually walking the few blocks from his home to his downtown office. He would have had sufficient funds to retire comfortably, but he saw value in work and gained great enjoyment from his vocational pursuits. Relaxing in a rocking chair, spending the day puttering around in a garden, or taking quiet strolls through a park apparently held little appeal for him.

King Solomon, reputed to be the wisest man in the history of the world, could have been referring to Mr. McBurney when he wrote in Ecclesiastes 5:19-20, "Moreover, when God gives any man wealth and possessions, and enables him to enjoy them, to accept his lot and be happy in his work – this is a gift of God. He seldom reflects on the days of his life, because God keeps him occupied with gladness of heart."

Using your God-given abilities and talents in a vocation you enjoy can fill your heart with gladness far beyond the “traditional” retirement age of 65. Resolve not to miss out on God’s best for your later years.

Copyright 2009, Integrity Resource Center, Inc. Adapted with permission from "Integrity Moments with Rick Boxx," a commentary on issues of integrity in the workplace from a Christian perspective.

Reflection/Discussion Questions
1. Have you formulated any retirement plans yet? When do you intend to retire – and how do you expect to use your time after that?

2. What is your reaction to the story of Waldo McBurney?

3. How would you compare the pros and cons of working and retiring? If you are young and still many years from retirement, how might the example of Mr. McBurney influence your thinking?

4. What alternatives might you have to retiring at age 65 – or perhaps later than that? Even if you do not remain in your current job, what other vocational pursuits might you consider that would utilize the abilities you have, along with the skills and experience you have acquired through the years?

NOTE: If you have a Bible and would like to read more about this subject, consider the following passages:
Numbers 8:23-26; Proverbs 10:4, 12:24, 18:9; Ecclesiastes 11:6, 12:13-14; 2 Timothy 2:20-21

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