紀念,如何讓我們不會忘記──HOW MEMORIALS KEEP US FROM FORGETTING

今年5 月 30日是美國陣亡將士紀念日(Memorial Day),這是一年一度,為紀念那成千上萬士兵,於軍隊服役期間犧牲了生命的一天,它起源於美國內戰之後的日子。並非慶祝戰爭,這個節日是為了紀念那些失去生命的人,並肯定他們在近 250 年來為自由付出的巨大代價。

紀念(memorial)的方式可以有很多種。我們有些建築、街道、圖書館、公園,甚至醫院的副樓,都會用為社會或社區做出寶貴貢獻的個人來命名。有一些企業會以已故創始人的名字命名;墓碑和其他類型的墓地標記,也是對生命到達盡頭的親人的紀念。

我記得曾聽一位演講者講述如何在教會的藝術品、座位上放置名牌,甚至在收奉獻的銀盤上放名牌,以懷念重要的已故會眾。想像一下在威爾遜夫人的奉獻盤中奉獻 – 真希望她會覺得感激。

紀念有很多目的。它們為子孫後代,保留了這些人的記憶。它們是對重要領導人感謝的最後表示,也是對親愛的家人愛的表達。它們使我們能與自己所承接的,和歷史上的重要時刻保持連結。

在聖經中,我們發現許多需要記住的勸勉,永遠不要忘記上帝過去為我們所做的一切。在一卷新約書卷中,於宣告「落在永生 神的手裏,真是可怕的。」之後,讀者們被告誡說:「你們要追念往日,蒙了光照以後所忍受大爭戰的各樣苦難……所以,你們不可丟棄勇敢的心;存這樣的心必得大賞賜。」(希伯來書 10章31-35節)

這段經文帶出了我們大多數人非常普遍的一個傾向 – 當我們面對現在的掙扎時,會忘記過去曾經發生的事。對於基督徒來說,當回想耶穌所做過的事,而對祂「能做什麼」以及「將來會做什麼」有確據,是非常重要的。

我們在舊約中發現了許多對紀念的引用。以色列人擺脫了埃及人幾個世紀的奴役後不久,上帝設立了逾越節的儀式,並說:「你們要記念這日,守為耶和華的節,作為你們世世代代永遠的定例。」(出埃及記 12 章14節)

也許在聖經中最著名的「紀念」事件,是發生在耶穌被出賣、受審和被釘十字架之前,當時他正與門徒一起慶祝逾越節。耶穌將無酵餅擘開,分給每個人,然後對他們說:「這是我的身體,為你們捨的,你們也應當如此行,為的是記念我。」(路加福音 22章19節)直到今天,世界各地的基督徒都遵守聖餐,以紀念祂為我們的罪而犧牲的死。

隨著我們在事業和生命的進展,也許我們會很有成就,並建立自己的紀念方式來提醒重要的人或事。但最重要的還是,上帝為我們所做的一切。

© 2022. Robert J. Tamasy 撰寫了職場大使:《CBMC的持續性傳統-傳福音及門徒訓練》;《企業巔峰:給今日職場從箴言而來永恆的智慧》;與Ken Johnson合著《用牧羊人的心追求生活》;與 David A. Stoddard 合著《導師之心》。他的雙週部落格是:www.bobtamasy.blogspot.com

備註:如果你手上有聖經,想要閱讀更多與這個主題相關的內容,請參考下面的經文:

(因篇幅有限,請查閱未列出的經文:馬太福音26:26-29):
出埃及記 39章6-7節
39:6 又琢出兩塊紅瑪瑙,鑲在金槽上,彷彿刻圖書,按著以色列兒子的名字雕刻;
39:7 將這兩塊寶石安在以弗得的兩條肩帶上,為以色列人做紀念石,是照耶和華所吩咐摩西的。
申命記 4章9-11節
4:9 「你只要謹慎,殷勤保守你的心靈,免得忘記你親眼所看見的事,又免得你一生、這事離開你的心;總要傳給你的子子孫孫。
4:10 你在何烈山站在耶和華─你 神面前的那日,耶和華對我說:『你為我招聚百姓,我要叫他們聽見我的話,使他們存活在世的日子,可以學習敬畏我,又可以教訓兒女這樣行。』
4:11 那時你們近前來,站在山下;山上有火焰沖天,並有昏黑、密雲、幽暗。
路加福音 22章14-20節
22:14 時候到了,耶穌坐席,使徒也和他同坐。
22:15 耶穌對他們說:「我很願意在受害以先和你們吃這逾越節的筵席。
22:16 我告訴你們,我不再吃這筵席,直到成就在 神的國裏。」
22:17 耶穌接過杯來,祝謝了,說:「你們拿這個,大家分著喝。
22:18 我告訴你們,從今以後,我不再喝這葡萄汁,直等 神的國來到。」
22:19 又拿起餅來,祝謝了,就擘開,遞給他們,說:「這是我的身體,為你們捨的,你們也應當如此行,為的是記念我。」
22:20 飯後也照樣拿起杯來,說:「這杯是用我血所立的新約,是為你們流出來的。
哥林多前書 11章23-26節
11:23 我當日傳給你們的,原是從主領受的,就是主耶穌被賣的那一夜,拿起餅來,
11:24 祝謝了,就擘開,說:「這是我的身體,為你們捨(有古卷:擘開)的,你們應當如此行,為的是記念我。」
11:25 飯後,也照樣拿起杯來,說:「這杯是用我的血所立的新約,你們每逢喝的時候,要如此行,為的是記念我。」
11:26 你們每逢吃這餅,喝這杯,是表明主的死,直等到他來。

反省與問題討論

  1. 當你想到「紀念」(memorial)這個詞時,你會想到什麼?
  2. 你能想到生活或工作的地方有什麼著名的紀念物,無論是為紀念重要領導人、慷慨的捐助人或歷史人物而命名的建築物嗎?在你看來,這樣的紀念有什麼好處(如果有的話)?
  3. 我們日常生活中的哪些因素,會導致我們忘記過去那些,為未來留下遺產的重要人物和里程碑呢?
  4. 如果你要創造一種紀念方式來回想神在你生命中所做的事,無論是最近的還是遙遠的過去,它會是什麼呢?它代表著什麼涵義?


HOW MEMORIALS KEEP US FROM FORGETTING

By Robert J. Tamasy

This year in the United States, May 30 marks the observance of Memorial Day, an annual day for remembering the sacrifices of many thousands of men and women who died while serving in the military. It originated in the days following the U.S. Civil War. While not celebrating war, the annual holiday memorializes those who have lost their lives and recognizes the great price they paid in the name of freedom over nearly 250 years.

There are many kinds of memorials. We have buildings, streets, libraries, parks and even hospital wings are named after individuals who have made invaluable contributions to their communities and society. Some businesses continue to bear the names of their deceased founders. Tombstones and other kinds of grave markers served as memorials to loved ones whose lives have come to an end.

I remember hearing a speaker tell about how nameplates were put on artwork, pews and even offering plates at his church to remember important members of the congregation who had died. Imagine making a contribution in Mrs. Wilson’s offering plate – hope she would appreciate it.

Memorials have many purposes. They preserve the memories of people for future generations. They serve as final gestures of appreciation for important leaders, as well as expressions of love for dear family members. And they enable us to maintain links to our heritage and significant moments in our history.

In the Bible, we find many exhortations to remember, never to forget what God has done on our behalf in the past. In one New Testament book, after declaring, “It is a dreadful thing to fall into the hands of the living God,” the readers are then admonished, “Remember those earlier days after you had received the light, when you stood your ground in a great contest in the face of suffering…. So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded. You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised” (Hebrews 10:31-35).

This passage addresses a very common tendency most of us have – to forget things that have happened in the past as we confront struggles in the present. For those who follow Jesus Christ, it is often important to think back to what He has done to find assurance about what He can and will do in the future.

We find a number of references to memorials in the Old Testament. Not long after the Israelites had been freed from centuries of slavery to the Egyptians, God instituted the Passover observance, stating, “Now this day will be a memorial to you, and you shall celebrate it as a feast to the Lord” (Exodus 12:14).

Perhaps the most famous “memorial” in the Scriptures occurred when Jesus, just before His betrayal, trial, and crucifixion, was observing the Passover with His disciples. After breaking the unleavened bread and giving pieces to each, He told them, “This is my body which is given for you; do this in remembrance of Me” (Luke 22:19). To this day, Christ-followers around the world observe holy communion as a memorial to His sacrificial death for our sins.

Perhaps we would do well, as we move forward in our careers and our lives in general, to establish our own memorials to remind us of important people, events – and most of all, what God has done for us.

© 2022. Robert J. Tamasy has written Marketplace Ambassadors: CBMC’s Continuing Legacy of Evangelism and Discipleship; Business at Its Best: Timeless Wisdom from Proverbs for Today’s Workplace; Pursuing Life With a Shepherd’s Heart, coauthored with Ken Johnson; andThe Heart of Mentoring, coauthored with David A. Stoddard. Bob’s biweekly blog is: www.bobtamasy.blogspot.com.

Reflection/Discussion Questions

  1. When you think of the word “memorial,” what thoughts come to your mind?
  2. Can you think of any prominent memorials where you live or work, whether buildings named in honor of a significant leader, a generous benefactor, or historical figure? What is the benefit, if any, of memorials like that – in your opinion?
  3. What factors in our everyday life can cause us to lose sight of important people and milestones in the past that have left a legacy for the future?
  4. If you were to create a kind of memorial as a remembrance for what God has done in your life, whether the recent or distant past, what might it be? What would it signify? 

NOTE: If you have a Bible and would like to read more, consider the following passages: Exodus 39:6-7; Deuteronomy 4:9-11; Matthew 26:26-29; Luke 22:14-20; 1 Corinthians 11:23-26


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