那就是我所要的

By Fritz Klumpp

雖然漢克與我每個禮拜天都在美國路易斯安納州紐奧爾良一間教會的同一間教室裡待一個鐘頭,但我們沒被正式地介紹過。看他的外表,會讓我想到年輕時的克林伊斯威特(Clint Eastwood)。我知道他像我一樣是個飛行員,在二次大戰期間曾在太平洋駕駛過海軍戰機。

雖然他夠誠懇,但我的印象是沒人想要太靠近他,因為你若與他作對,他會很快在你的鼻子上賞一拳。我後來得知他是一個拳擊手,我對他的第一印象是正確的。漢克的妻子,小名是「喬夫人」,看起來像加州「黃金女郎」的典雅模範,但非常安靜,很少說話。

我的妻子安妮與我後來從紐奧爾良龐克圈湖的南岸搬到北岸,而且想在禮拜天早上找一個新的地方打發時間。那時,我就因為許多原因參加了教會。首先,我覺得要回報上帝,因為我在越南飛了許多次戰鬥任務,而祂保守了我的性命。第二,我有兩個小女兒。當我的第一個女兒出生時,想到要把小女兒養育長大,讓我嚇得要命--因為我知道小男孩們在想些什麼。我要我的女兒有教會的道德標準,直到她們大到能夠考慮自己作的任何錯誤會帶來什麼後果。

第三、上教堂正適合我決定自己應有的形象。我是一位專業人士,而且我覺得我需要看起來是一位可敬的人和愛家的人。外表是重要的,不是嗎?然而,實際上我當時是靈性破產了,但我想自稱是基督徒的人也不會比我好多少。

有一天早晨我們就像許多個禮拜天一樣坐在教堂裡。漢克與喬夫人與我們一樣參加同一間教會。然後他們開始談論在德州達拉斯的一個活動。他們身上散發出一種熱忱是我從未見過的。那個早晨安妮轉過頭對我說:「我不知道他們擁有的是什麼,但那就是我想要的。」

我們看到兩個生命奇蹟似地改變了。因為以前曾經觀察過他,我們看到漢克的生命和態度的轉變,這讓我們尋求生命中一些重要問題的答案,例如,「為何我在這裡?」「我生命的目的是什麼?」「生命就只有這樣嗎--還有其他的嗎?」

我很感謝能看到漢克與喬夫人的典範,因此我的妻子與我就開始了屬靈的追尋,而那把我們的生命翻轉了過來。我們對婚姻、為人父母、事業與工作、甚至我們的財務都獲得的新的觀點。我們發現了從未想像過的方向和希望。而且我們獲得了新的生命。如聖經新約所說:「若有人在基督裡,他就是新造的人,舊事已過,都變成新的了」(哥林多後書5章17節)。

當耶穌基督進入我們的生命中,我們成為如經文所說「新造的人」。你是否見證過一個生命奇蹟似地轉變?可能你自己就有這樣的經驗。若沒有,你是否曾想要有這樣的改變,獲得一個新生命?

威廉.柯蘭普是退休的飛行員、生命教練和演說家。他曾是CBMC的理事和執行主任。他曾在歐洲、非洲、澳洲和加拿大,以及美國各地演講。

省思 / 討論題目
你是否曾觀察過某人的生命有徹底的改變,與你以前所認識的那人大不相同,而且你像作者的妻子一樣想知道:「他們擁有的是什麼?我如何也能得到?」 在你看來,生命中是否有「重要的問題」是每個人都必須回答--或想要知道答案,例如「為何我在這裡?」「我生命的目的是什麼?」「除了早上起床,去工作,努力掙扎過了一天,回 家,然後第二天再重覆這樣循環--還有其他的嗎?」請解釋。 若你有考慮過以上的問題,你找到什麼答案或結論? 你是否有如作者所說成為「新造的人」的經驗?你認為那是什麼意思?若你想看或討論聖經對此主題的其他部份,請看以下經文:約翰福音3章3、16-18節;羅馬書6章4-11節;加拉太書2章20節;以弗所書2章8-9節;提多書3章5節

“THAT IS WHAT I WANT”
By Fritz Klumpp

Although Hank and I spent an hour each Sunday in the same class at a church in New Orleans, Louisiana, U.S.A., we had never been formally introduced. Physically he reminded me of a young Clint Eastwood. I had learned that like me, Hank was a pilot and had flown Marine fighter planes in the Pacific during World War II.

Even though he was cordial enough, I got the impression you did not want to get too close because if you crossed him, Hank would just as soon punch you in the nose as tell you the time of day. I later learned he was a boxer, and my initial impressions were accurate. Hank”s wife, nickcnamed “M-Jo,” seemed like the classic example of the California “golden girl,” but was extremely quiet and rarely uttered a word.

My wife, Ann, and I eventually moved from New Orleans” south shore to the north shore of Lake Ponchatrain, and looked for a new place to spend our Sunday mornings. At this time I was attending church for several reasons. First of all, I felt I was paying God back for having spared my life while flying numerous combat missions in Vietnam. Secondly, I had two little girls. When our first daughter was born, the thought of raising a little girl scared me to death – because I know how little boys think. I wanted my daughters to have the moral guidance of the church until they were old enough to consider the consequences of any wrong decisions they might make.

Thirdly, going to church simply suited the image I had determined I should have. I was a professional person and felt I needed to look the part of a respectable person and family man. Appearances are important, right? In reality, however, I was spiritually bankrupt, but thought no one who called himself a Christian had anything more than what I did.

One morning we were sitting there as we had done so many Sundays before. Hank and M-Jo had joined the same church we were attending and began talking about an event they had experienced in Dallas, Texas. They seemed to radiate an enthusiasm the likes of which I had never seen before. That was the morning Ann turned to me and said, “I don”t know what it is they have, but that”s what I want.”

We had seen two lives miraculously changed. Having observed and known him previously, the transformation we saw in Hank”s life and demeanor led us to seek meaningful answers to life”s greatest questions, such as, “Why am I here?” “What is my purpose?” “Is this life all there is – or is there something more?”

Thanks in part to the example we had seen in Hank and M-Jo, my wife and I began a spiritual quest that turned our lives upside-down. We gained new perspectives on marriage, parenting, business and work, even our finances. We discovered a sense of direction and hope we had never imagined. And ultimately, we gained a new life. As it says in the New Testament of the Bible, “Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation” (2 Corinthians 5:17).

When Jesus Christ came into our lives, we became, as the verse states, “new creations.” Have you ever witnessed a life miraculously transformed? Perhaps you have had such an experience yourself. If not, have you ever desired such a change, to gain a new life?

William F. Klumpp is a veteran aviator, life coach, and public speaker. A former board member and executive director of CBMC, he has spoken in Europe, Africa, Australia and Canada, as well as across the U.S.

Reflection/Discussion Questions
Have you ever observed the life of someone that was so radically different from other people you have known, you found yourself wondering, as Mr. Klumpp”s wife did, “What is it they have? And how can I get it, too?” In your view, are there “big questions” about life everyone needs to answer – or would like to know the answers to, such as “Why am I here?” “What is my purpose?” Or perhaps, “Is there more to life than getting up in the morning, going to work, struggling through the day, going home, and starting the cycle all over the next day?” Explain your answer. If you have considered questions like that, what answers or conclusions have you found? Can you relate to Mr. Klumpp”s statement about becoming a “new creation”? What do you think that means?If you would like to look at or discuss other portions from the Bible that relate to this topic, consider the following brief sampling of passages: John 3:3,16-18; Romans 6:4-11; Galatians 2:20; Ephesians 2:8-9; Titus 3:5

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