完全的信任需要長久的時間──TOTAL TRUST TAKES TIME

過去的年代,一個簡單的握手,就等同完成兩方或多方簽署的合同協議。但多數的情況下,那樣的日子已經離我們很久很久了。事實上,即使是已經簽署的合同,經常被破壞和爭議的程度,也比我們想像的大得多。

因此,在二十一世紀的職場,我們必須解決專業和個人生活中,越來越普遍那缺乏信任的問題。在我50多年的商業工作經驗中,我觀察到商業和個人的互動,以及對協議的看法,產生了極大的轉變。

完全的信任需要長久的時間。建立和維持信任沒有捷徑,所以,我相信我們必須回到我完全信任的聖經中,向我們提出的基本原則,它教導我們應該如何關注他人的福祉以及我們自己的利益。

在我從事保險業務的職涯裡,我親身體驗到了在所有業務往來中,尋求達到「雙贏」方式的價值。有這樣的想法,是在我生命的早期參加團隊運動項目時,幫助著我形成的概念。然而,對我最大的影響,則來自於學習、理解和遵循神話語中的訓詞。

大約在三千年前,先知以賽亞就很好地掌握了信任的概念。舊約以賽亞書中永恆的話語在今天仍然適用。以賽亞書2章22節忠告說:你們休要倚靠世人。他鼻孔裏不過有氣息;他在一切事上可算甚麼呢?」這總結了為什麼完全的信任需要長久的時間。人類的問題是「罪」,那涵蓋著普遍性地傾向自我中心。接著 ,在以賽亞書12章2節,我們看到了對比。看哪!神是我的拯救;我要倚靠他,並不懼怕。因為主耶和華是我的力量,是我的詩歌,他也成了我的拯救。」以賽亞兩次重複祂的名字,這不是一個錯誤,而是對這位公元前8世紀的先知來說,沒有什麼比全能的神更重要的了。

你把你的信任放在哪裡? 我不是說沒有人值得信任,但我們需要對我們信任的人 – 包括我們自己 – 保持警覺,並考量個人動機。除了將生命交給神讓祂掌管之外,我們可能會發現,連我們自己都不完全值得信任,甚至是無法相信我們的思想和行為。

即使我們與天父有正確的關係,但只要我們活在這個世上,就仍然必須處理我們的罪性 – 就是有些聖經譯本稱之為「肉體」的問題。我們要如何才能學會變得更值得信賴,也更信任他人呢?我發現與一小群敬虔的人在一起是很有幫助的,這些人在經歷過一段時間後,已經證明了我可以信任他們的幫助,並在我做出重要的人生決定時,給我建議。我同時也學會了依靠我妻子的智慧和洞察力來處理許多個人的決定。

聖經中我最喜歡的經文之一談到了信任的問題。在詩篇20篇7節中,以色列王大衛宣稱:「有人靠車,有人靠馬,但我們要提到耶和華-我們神的名。」這是我多年來一直信任的地方,神從來沒有讓我失望過。如果你還沒有這樣做,請考慮將你的信任放在主身上,祂看到、知道並掌管萬有。祂從一開始就一直在處理祂所創造的一切 – 並且做得很好。

Jim Langley擔任人壽和健康保險經紀人期間已有30多年,他的寫作經歷也是。近年來,他的熱情轉向寫下他與神的個人關係。他的目標是鼓勵其他人來親近神。他是CBMC的長期會員,在2014年開始撰寫「比賽最後四分之一場戰略」。

備註:如果你手上有聖經,想閱讀更多相關的內容,請參考下面的經文:

詩篇25篇1-5節
25:1耶和華啊,我的心仰望你。
25:2我的上帝啊,我素來倚靠你;求你不要叫我羞愧,不要叫我的仇敵向我誇勝。
25:3凡等候你的必不羞愧;惟有那無故行奸詐的必要羞愧。
25:4耶和華啊,求你將你的道指示我,將你的路教訓我!
25:5求你以你的真理引導我,教訓我,因為你是救我的上帝。我終日等候你。
箴言3章5-6節
3:5你要專心仰賴耶和華,不可倚靠自己的聰明,
3:6在你一切所行的事上都要認定他,他必指引你的路。
箴言22章17-19節
22:17你須側耳聽受智慧人的言語,留心領會我的知識。
22:18你若心中存記,嘴上咬定,這便為美。
22:19我今日以此特特指教你,為要使你倚靠耶和華。
約翰福音12章35-36節
12:35耶穌對他們說:「光在你們中間還有不多的時候,應當趁著有光行走,免得黑暗臨到你們;那在黑暗裏行走的,不知道往何處去。
12:36你們應當趁著有光,信從這光,使你們成為光明之子。」耶穌說了這話,就離開他們隱藏了。
羅馬書15章13節
15:13但願使人有盼望的上帝,因信將諸般的喜樂、平安充滿你們的心,使你們藉著聖靈的能力大有盼望!
哥林多前書4章1-4節
4:1人應當以我們為基督的執事,為上帝奧祕事的管家。
4:2所求於管家的,是要他有忠心。
4:3我被你們論斷,或被別人論斷,我都以為極小的事;連我自己也不論斷自己。
4:4我雖不覺得自己有錯,卻也不能因此得以稱義;但判斷我的乃是主。

反省與問題討論  

  1. 根據你的經驗,一般而言,你如何評估職場上的信任程度?
  2. 你覺得相信同事、共事的人,或經常與你有業務往來的人,是容易還是困難?請解釋你的答案。
  3. 如果你能想到一個你能夠高度信任的人,他有哪些特質或特點讓你覺得他值得信任?
  4. 當人們說 「相信神 」是什麼意思?如果你相信神的話,你會如何描述你對祂的信任程度?哪些因素會影響你能夠像詩篇中的經文所說的那樣,「信靠耶和華我們神的名」


TOTAL TRUST TAKES TIME

By Jim Langley

There was a time when a simple handshake was as good as a contractual agreement signed by two or more parties. For the most part, those days have been gone for a long, long time. In fact, even signed contracts are often broken and contested more than we might imagine.

As a result, in the 21st century workplace we must address an increasing general lack of trust in both our professional and personal lives. Over my 50-plus years of working experience in business, I have seen a dramatic shift in how business and personal interactions and agreements are perceived.

Total trust takes time. There is no shortcut to building and maintaining trust, so I believe we must get back to the basic principles presented to us in the Book of books, the Bible, which I trust completely. It teaches how we should be concerned with the well-being of others, as well as our own interests.

During my career in the insurance business, I have experienced firsthand the value of seeking a “win-win” approach in all my business dealings. Participating in team sports early in my life helped me develop such thoughts conceptually. However, the greatest impact has come from learning, understanding, and following the precepts found in God’s Word.

The prophet Isaiah had a good grasp of the concept of trust nearly 3,000 years ago. The timeless words of the Old Testament book of Isaiah continue to ring true today. Isaiah 2:22 advises, “Stop trusting in man, who has but a breath in his nostrils. Of what account is he?” That sums up why total trust takes time. Humankind’s problem is sin, including the universal tendency to focus on self.  Then, in Isaiah 12:2 we see the contrast: “Surely God is my salvation; I will trust and not be afraid. The Lord, the Lord, is my strength and my song. He has become my salvation.” It is not a mistake that Isaiah repeats His name twice. Nothing was more important to the 8th century B.C. prophet than God Almighty.

“Where do you place your trust?” I am not saying no one deserves to be trusted, but we need to be wary of who receives our trust – including ourselves – and consider personal motives. Apart from a life surrendered to God and His control, we may discover that we are not totally trustworthy, or even capable of trusting our thoughts and actions.

Even if we have a right relationship with our Father in Heaven, we still must deal with our sin nature – which some translations of the Bible call “the flesh” – for as long as we are here on this planet. How can we learn to become more trustworthy, and more trusting of others? I have found it helpful to surround myself with a small group of godly men who have demonstrated, over time, that I can trust them for help and counsel me in working through important life decisions. I have learned to rely on my wife’s wisdom and insights for dealing with many personal decisions as well.

One of my favorite verses in the Scriptures speaks to the issue of trustworthiness. In Psalm 20:7, King David of Israel declares: “Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the Lord our God.” That is where I have been placing my trust for years, and God has never let me down. If you have not already done so, please consider placing your trust in the Lord, who sees, knows, and controls all that exists. He has been dealing with His creation since its very beginning – and doing it well.

© 2022, all rights reserved. Jim Langley has been writing for more than 30 years while working as a life and health insurance agent. In recent years, his passion has turned to writing about his relationship with God. His goal is to encourage others to draw near to Him as well. A long-time member of CBMC, he started writing “Fourth Quarter Strategies” in 2014.

 Reflection/Discussion Questions

  1. How would you assess the level of trustworthiness in the marketplace in general, based on your experience?
  2. Do you find it easy – or difficult – to trust colleagues and coworkers, as well as people with whom you regularly transact business? Explain your answer.
  3. If you can think of someone in whom you have been able to place a high level of trust, what are some of their traits or characteristics that you feel make them trustworthy?
  4. When people say, “Trust God,” what does that mean to you? How would you describe your level of trust in God – if at all? What factors have influenced your ability to do as the verse from the Psalms says, to “trust in the name of the Lord our God”?

NOTE: For more about what the Bible says about this topic, consider the following passages: Psalm 25:1-5; Proverbs 3:5-6, 22:17-19; John 12:35-36; Romans 15:13; 1 Corinthians 4:1-4


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