如何遠離鬧劇和緊張

By Ken Korkow

如何遠離鬧劇和緊張

在這個世上,無論到哪,好像每分每秒都充滿鬧劇、緊張、恐懼和新危機。因為被迫在這樣高壓的環境裡生活和工作,我們很容易被焦慮淹沒,但我們也能主動去減少外在對我們的影響。我選擇後者,我是這麼做的:

首先,我下定決心不要浪費時間在自己無法改變的事情上面。沒有盼望是一種令人無力的情緒。所以每當我感覺事情已經超過自己所能負擔的範圍時,我選擇不花時間為這件事感到痛苦。

下一步才是動作。先努力將焦點放在自己能改變的部分,尤其有天上永恆價值的改變。

我和大家一樣,從電視、收音機、網路、電子郵件、簡訊、看板和其他媒體接收了過多的訊息。也同時收到許多需要援助的重要訊息,其中很多都是需要實質關心和也是令人感動的。但是,我也和大家一樣,我的資源是有限的,即使願意,但也沒辦法每一件事都做。所以我就採用上面提到的兩個原則,來決定優先次序,才能將我的時間、才幹、和財富做最好的發揮。因此,我做了以下的決定:

首先,今年我停掉了訂閱了四十年知名的華爾街日報,接下來是停止訂了三十年的歐馬哈先驅日報。而電視的全國新聞,我早在多年前就不看了。

請不要誤會,我並不是因為鴕鳥的心態才去做這些事。我只是發現所謂的「新聞」都是為了要吸引更多的廣告,而傾向「做」出的娛樂效果,但是我並不想每天看鬧劇。

神希望我們能像以薩迦支派的人一樣:「以薩迦支派,有二百族長都通達時務,知道以色列人所當行的;他們族弟兄都聽從他們的命令。(歷代志上1232)

我們如何能做到像以薩迦支派的人通達時務?首先,我需要每天花時間讀聖經(我也讀其他的宗教經典),因為所羅門王在傳道書中寫道:「日光之下沒有新鮮事」但是神會透過聖靈引導、保護和供應我。

然後,一天兩次我在網路上閱讀自己認為有用的國際期刊和國內的新聞頭條。偶爾我和太太會看晚間新聞的前十分鐘,但是很節制,因為我們不想再陷入「鬧劇」當中。

每一天我都努力提醒自己:神掌權,所以重點不是「現在發生了甚麼事?」而是「我們如何回應這些事?」只有被神的真理、聖靈和愛充滿時,我的生命才能反映出祂的性格。

Ken Korkow住在美國的內布拉斯加州歐馬哈市,是當地CBMC的會長。這篇文章經授權,節錄自他的所寫的「生命傳真」專欄。

省思討論題目

你同意這篇文章所說的,我們居住的世界好像充滿鬧劇、緊張和恐懼,但是這些資訊卻常常是操作、甚至是渲染誇大出來的?如果你同意,你覺得這些訊息給我們的生活和工作帶來甚麼樣的影響? 你是否發現自己有時候會執著於無法改變或是控制的事情,為此感到痛苦?關於這一點,你覺得自己應該做些甚麼改變? 你覺得人要如何把自己的焦點從無法改變的事情拉回到能改變的事,甚至是正面積極、在天上有永恆價值的改變? 你覺得限制那些不安的訊息進到你的生活是好的嗎?你覺得這是聰明的選擇嗎?還是你覺得我們應該盡可以去蒐集和注意那些國際和國內的最新消息?

備註:如果你手上有聖經,希望能閱讀更多關於這個主題的經文,請參考下面:箴言4章26-27節、10章19節、14章8,30節、16章4,21節、17章24節、19章20節、 26章24-26節;以賽亞書41章10節

HOW TO ESCAPE THE DRAMA AND THE TENSION

By Ken Korkow

Everywhere we look, we see drama, tension, fear, and a new crisis seemingly every minute. Forced to live and work in this oppressive environment, we can either become overwhelmed with anxiety, or take proactive steps to minimize external influences on us. I have chosen the latter. Here is what I am doing:

First of all, I have determined not to waste energy on things I cannot influence. Feeling helpless can be a very debilitating emotion, so whenever I realize things are beyond my control, I choose not to spend time agonizing over them.

My second step is actually the flip side of the first. I endeavor to exert influence in areas where I can make a difference, especially when I can see the possibility of an eternal impact.

Like you, I find myself inundated with information overload – from TV, radio, the Internet, emails, texts, billboards and other sources. It is impossible to process it all. At the same time, we all get many requests for help, many of them very worthwhile. There are lots of valid concerns, as well as countless good and noble causes. But like you, my resources are limited; I cannot do everything, even if I wanted to. So I have applied the two principles above as a way of determining my priorities – what is the best investment of my time, talent, and treasure. As a result, here are some of the decisions I have made:

For 40 years I have subscribed to the respected business periodical, the Wall Street Journal, but this year stopped. For 30 years we have received the Omaha World Herald every day, but this year we stopped. And a long time ago I stopped watching national television news.

Please do not get me wrong. I am not an isolationist or a head-in-the-sand person. I have simply come to realize that the “news” is slanted entertainment with a desire for higher viewer ratings so they can sell more advertising – and I no longer want to get sucked into the drama.

God wants us to be like the “men of Issachar” described in 1 Chronicles 12:32, because they “understood the times and knew what their nation needed to do.”

So how can I do that? First, I make the effort to spend time in the Bible (I also read several devotionals) each day because, as King Solomon wrote, “there is nothing new under the sun” (Ecclesiastes 1:9). In the process, God through His Spirit guides, protects, and provides for me.

Next, I check a few Internet news sources twice a day and read periodicals I have found useful for international, national and local news coverage. Very sporadically my wife and I will watch the first 10 minutes of the evening TV news, but again limit that because we do not wish to get caught up in the drama of managed news coverage.

Throughout each day I strive to remind myself that the Lord is completely in control of everything, so the issue is not “What is happening?” but rather, “How will I respond to what is happening?” I have found that only then, when I am being filled with God”s truth, His Spirit and His love, does the overflow of my life reflect His character.

Ken Korkow lives in Omaha, Nebraska, U.S.A., where he serves as an area director for CBMC. This is adapted from his “Fax of Life” column. Used with permission.

Reflection/Discussion Questions

Do you share the view that the world around us seems filled with drama, tension and fear, often manipulated, even magnified, by the various sources of information available to us? If so, what has been the impact as you go about living your life and performing your work? Do you sometimes find yourself caught up in agonizing about things over which you have absolutely no influence or control? Why is that – and what do you think should, or can, be done about it? How can a person shift the focus from things they cannot influence to those things over which they can exert positive change, even things of eternal significance? What is your response to the idea of restricting or limiting exposure to information sources that always seem to have an unsettling effect on our lives? Do you think this is a wise choice, or do you think we need to collect as much information as possible to ensure we are fully aware of and current on local, national and world events?

NOTE: If you have a Bible and would like to read more about this subject, consider the following passages: Proverbs 4:26-27, 10:19, 14:8,30, 16:4,21, 17:24, 19:20, 26:24-26; Isaiah 41:10

Show More