Wednesday, May 29, 2024

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成功耕作與生活的10項原則──10 RULES FOR SUCCESSFUL FARMING – AND LIVING

儘管我曾在房地產領域擁有多年的成功職涯,但在農場長大的影響,從未離開過我。我的家人仍在美國南達科他州的皮爾擁有一座農場,我經常回到那裡,在那個相對寧靜的農業環境,我從與母牛、公牛、馬和其他家畜相處中,學到許多重要的功課。

這其中,包含我所稱>成功耕作與生活的十項原則」。我相信當你閱讀這些原則時,你將感到驚訝並受到啟發,所以現在我將它們全部列出來:

#1 你應該完成的工作就去完成                                 #6   你應該完成的工作就去完成
#2 你應該完成的工作就去完成                                 #7   你應該完成的工作就去完成
#3 你應該完成的工作就去完成                                 #8   你應該完成的工作就去完成
#4 你應該完成的工作就去完成                                 #9   你應該完成的工作就去完成
#5 你應該完成的工作就去完成                                 #10 你應該完成的工作就去完成

儘管我已不在農場全職工作和生活,上述列出的十項「原則」,仍繼續作為我每天,該如何面對自己職責的提醒和動力。在我看著每天「待辦事項」清單時,我常意識到,上面列出的內容,已超過我所能夠完成的。然而,我覺得清單上的每件事,都是重要且必需要完成的,裡面並沒有非必要或是不重要的事項。

那麼問題來了,我怎樣才能完成所有這些重要的事情呢?我是否要比平時起得更早-而我已經很早起了-並且工作到深夜?經驗告訴我,這並不是解決的辦法。一個更好的方法是,把我需要做的事情都交託給上帝,並相信祂會讓我完成我必須完成的事情。

詩篇127篇2節給了我們這樣的洞見:「你們清早起來,很晚才歇息,吃勞碌得來的飯,都是徒然;因為主必使他所愛的安睡。」(聖經新譯本) 無論是在農場工作、辦公室還是在家工作-在每個情況下,要完成的事情似乎總是比可用的時間更多。倚靠上帝,我們能找到完成這些事情的力量和能力。

這並不意味著我們可以躺在床上或無所事事地坐在辦公桌前,在我們不努力的情況下,還期望上帝完成我們的差事。我在神學家馬丁·路德所提供的觀點中,得到了很多智慧:「禱告時,如同完全只能靠上帝般地禱告,禱告完畢後,如同完全只能靠自己般地努力。」他還說: 「今天我有太多事情要做,以至於我必需多花一個小時用膝蓋跪下(禱告)。」

許多次,我不得不花更多的時間,在上帝的話語和禱告中,然後在接下來的一天,努力專注於祂所指引的下個「一件事」。透過這種方式,我力圖成為一個「討上帝喜悅的人」,而不是「討人喜悅」或「討自己喜悅」的人。我學習到,這有助於減輕一些壓力,減輕日常工作的焦慮。如果我抱持這樣的態度,我所做的一切最終都是為了上帝的榮耀,我可以確信祂將與我同在,並賦予我能力去完成必須完成的事情。

歌羅西書3章23-24節清楚的表達了這點:無論做什麼,都要從心裡做,像是給主做的,不是給人做的,因你們知道從主那裡必得著基業為賞賜;你們所事奉的乃是主基督。在我們所做的每件事中都像是在為主而作,願我(和你)都能充實地結束這一天-為了祂的榮耀和他人的利益。

Ken Korkow居住在美國內布拉斯加州的奧馬哈市,他擔任該地的CBMC區域總監。本篇文章改編自他的「生活傳真」專欄。經許可使用。

備註:如果你有聖經,想閱讀更多相關的內容,請參考以下的經文:

箴言12章24節
12:24 殷勤人的手必掌權;懶惰的人必服苦。
箴言14章23節
14:23諸般勤勞都有益處;嘴上多言乃致窮乏。
箴言24章27節
24:27你要在外頭預備工料,在田間辦理整齊,然後建造房屋。
傳道書3章12-13節
3:12我知道世人,莫強如終身喜樂行善;
3:13並且人人吃喝,在他一切勞碌中享福,這也是神的恩賜。
傳道書4章9-12節
4:9兩個人總比一個人好,因為二人勞碌同得美好的果效。
4:10若是跌倒,這人可以扶起他的同伴;若是孤身跌倒,沒有別人扶起他來,這人就有禍了。
4:11再者,二人同睡就都暖和,一人獨睡怎能暖和呢?
4:12有人攻勝孤身一人,若有二人便能敵擋他;三股合成的繩子不容易折斷。
傳道書9章10節
9:10凡你手所當做的事要盡力去做;因為在你所必去的陰間沒有工作,沒有謀算,沒有知識,也沒有智慧。
歌羅西書3章17節
3:17無論做什麼,或說話或行事,都要奉主耶穌的名,藉著他感謝父神。

反省與問題討論

  1. 你對於「成功耕作與生存的10項原則」的反應是什麼?
  2. 當你查看行事曆和工作完成期限後,意識到你所需要完成的事情,已超過你所能完成的範圍時後,你通常會如何度過這一天呢?你會驚慌、發牢騷、抱怨或是其他反應嗎?
  3. 你相信禱告和信靠上帝可以減輕要求嚴格的工作所帶來的壓力和焦慮嗎?為什麼?如果你相信,能否舉例說明?
  4. 「像是給主做的,不是給人做的」是什麼意思?你認為採用這種態度,會使你所做的工作和工作方式有所不同嗎?請解釋你的答案。


10 RULES FOR SUCCESSFUL FARMING – AND LIVING

By Ken Korkow

Although I enjoyed a successful career in real estate for a number of years, the influence of growing up on a farm has never left me. My family still owns a ranch in Pierre, South Dakota, U.S.A., and I return there often. In that relatively quiet agricultural setting, among cows, bulls, horses, and other livestock, I learned many important lessons.

Among those are what I call the “10 Rules for Successful Farming – and Living.” I think you will be amazed and enlightened when you read them, so here are all 10 of them:
#1. Do your work when it needs to be done.       #2. Do your work when it needs to be done.
#3. Do your work when it needs to be done.       #4. Do your work when it needs to be done.
#5. Do your work when it needs to be done.       #6. Do your work when it needs to be done.
#7. Do your work when it needs to be done.       #8. Do your work when it needs to be done.
#9. Do your work when it needs to be done.       #10. Do your work when it needs to be done.

While I no longer work and live full-time on a farm, the 10 “rules” listed above continue to serve as a reminder and motivation for how I should approach my responsibilities every day. Looking at my daily “To Do” list, I often realize it contains more than I can possibly get done. And yet, I feel that everything on my list is important and needs to be accomplished. There are no optional or frivolous items on my list.

The question is, then, how can I possibly get all of these important things done? Do I get up earlier than usual – and I rise early in the morning already – and work longer into the night? Experience has taught me this is not the solution. A better approach is to take everything I need to do to the Lord and trust Him to enable me to accomplish what must be done.

Psalm 127:2 gives us this insight: It is vain for you to rise early, to retire late, to eat the bread of anxious labors — for He gives [blessings] to His beloved even in [their] sleep” (Amplified Version). Work on a farm, work in an office, and work in the home – in each case, there will always be more to do than there seems time for getting it done. Relying on God, we find the strength and capacity to accomplish it.

This does not mean we stay in bed or sit idly at our desk and expect the Lord to accomplish our tasks without our help. I have found much wisdom in the perspective offered by theologian Martin Luther: “Pray like it all depends on God, then when you are done, go work like it all depends on you.” He also said, “I have so much to do today, I will need to spend another hour on my knees (in prayer).”

Many times I have been forced to spend extra time in God’s Word and prayer – and then go through the rest of the day striving to focus on the next ‘one thing’ as He directed. In taking this approach, I seek to be a ‘God-pleaser’ rather than ‘people-pleaser’ or ‘self-pleaser.’ This, I have learned, helps to take some of the pressure off, to reduce the stress of daily responsibilities. If I take the attitude that all I do ultimately is for God’s glory, I can be assured He will be with me and empower me to do what must be done.

Colossians 3:23-24 expresses this clearly: “Whatever you do, do it heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.” We are to work “as unto the Lord” in everything we do. May I (and you) finish this day well – for His glory and the benefit of others.

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

  1. What is your reaction to the “10 Rules for Successful Farming – and Living”?
  2. How do you typically approach a day when after looking at your schedule and deadlines, you realize there is more that needs to be done than you could possibly accomplish? Do you panic, grumble, and complain, or what?
  3. Do you believe prayer and trusting in God can reduce the pressure and stress of a demanding job? Why or why not? If you do believe that, can you give any examples?
  4. What does it mean to “work as for the Lord rather than for men”? Do you think adopting this attitude would make the work you do – and how you do it – look different? Explain your answer.

NOTE: If you have a Bible and would like to read more, consider the following passages:

Proverbs 12:24, 14:23, 24:27; Ecclesiastes 3:12-13, 4:9-12, 9:10; Colossians 3:17



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