思想 / 討論題目
上一次你覺得沮喪是什麼時候？現在你的生活中是否有什麼事讓你沮喪？請解釋那情況，並說明你如何處理。 面對似乎無法解決的狀況，你一向如何反應？例如，對於財務困難覺得不知所措，或工作環境失控，你一向如何回應？ 在極大的困難中，你覺得禱告有幫助嗎？為什麼？ 在艱困的環境中，你禱告尋求上帝的幫助，但你的禱告似乎沒有得到回應，你會有什麼感覺？你是否同意本文作者所說，這是上帝在培養我們的耐心，並使我們倚靠祂？請解釋。
By: Rick Warren
Most of us feel fairly self-sufficient. When a crisis arises, we do whatever is necessary, work through the problem, and move on. What happens, however, when we do everything we know to do and the crisis remains? Often we then adopt the motto, “When all else fails, pray.” But what happens when even your prayers go unanswered?
If you feel discouraged because of God”s delay in answering your prayers, understand the delay does not mean denial. Just because the answer or the miracle hasn”t come – yet – that does not mean God is not going to answer, or that He has forgotten you, or that He does not care about you. It simply means, “Not yet!”
Spiritual maturity is knowing the difference between “No” and “Not yet” – the difference between a denial and a delay. The Bible tells us, “He who is coming will come and will not delay” (Hebrews 10:37).
The delay may be a test of your patience. Anyone can be patient once, and even twice. And, just about anybody can be patient three times. So God may choose to test your patience again and again – and again, until you think you cannot be patient any longer.
Why does He do this? To determine how patient you are? No, He already knows that. He delays his answer to reveal to YOU how patient you are. In this way you will discover what is inside of you, and be able to understand your level of commitment. God tests your patience so that you can know He is faithful, even if the answers you seek are delayed.
If you have become discouraged, turn this negative emotion around by remembering God teaches you patience during times of delay. Ask him to transform your discouragement into patience.
You may be going through difficult times right now and feel like running away or dropping off the planet. You have become discouraged because the situation you face – at work, in your home, in your finances or your health – seems unmanageable, unreasonable, or even unfair. It may seem unbearable and inside you find yourself basically declaring, “God, I can”t take it anymore. I just can”t take it anymore!” But you can.
You can endure, staying with the situation longer because God is with you. He will enable you to press on, if you are willing to trust Him and rely on Him. Remember, you are never a failure until you quit.
Do not quit. Resist discouragement and finish the race God has set before you.
As it says in the Scriptures, “You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised. For in just a very little while, He who is coming will come and will not delay” (Hebrews 10:36-37).
Adapted from a column by Dr. Rick Warren, the author of numerous books, including the highly acclaimed, The Purpose-Drive Life, which has been translated into many languages and sold throughout the world. It affirms the importance of having a carefully considered, clearly expressed purpose to guide everyday life. Most recently, he also has written The Purpose of Christmas.
When was the last time you felt discouraged? Is something in your life causing discouragement for you right now? Explain the situation and how you have dealt with it. What is your typical response to situations that seem to defy resolution? For instance, if you feel overwhelmed by financial problems, or if circumstances at work seem out of control – how do you usually react? Do you find prayer helpful during times of great difficulty? Why or why not? If you do pray and seek God”s help in working through adverse situations, how do you feel when your prayers seem to go unheard or unanswered? Do you agree with Dr. Warren that these are times God can use to build your patience, as well as your reliance on Him? Explain your answer.NOTE: If you have a Bible, consider these other passages that deal with this topic:
Isaiah 40:31, 41:10; Jeremiah 29:11-13, 33:3; Luke 11:9-13; James 1:2-4