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卸下忧虑

作者:道格·巴契勒 牧师日期:2019-03-13 6:56:29浏览数:255
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奇妙真相:忧虑是个“无声的杀手”,它会导致心脏病、高血压、胸痛和心律不齐等疾病。在美国,压力最大的职业包括外科医生、商业航空公司飞行员、摄影记者和房地产经纪人,生活压力排名前三的城市分别是芝加哥、洛杉矶和纽约。

两个朋友共进午餐,一个问道:“最近过得怎么样?”

那个人回答说:“我的房子被收回,工作丢了,医保被取消,连信用卡也刷爆了。”

“天啊!”他的朋友关切地说:“你可怎么办啊?”

“我不担心这些,”那个人笑着说:“我雇了一位专业人士,他替我为这些事情担忧。”

“雇这个人花了多少钱?”

“每年5万美金。”

他的朋友深吸一口气:“你到哪儿去弄那么多钱啊?”

“我不担心,”那个人笑着说:“这是他的事情。”

你是否曾被忧虑压倒?令我们担忧的事情数不胜数——孩子,健康,收入,人际关系,财产,甚至是我们的得救问题,都能让人感到忧虑万分。

确实的,耶稣吩咐我们不要忧虑——不要让忧虑困扰你。祂通过自然界赐给我们启示,借以教导我们怎样卸下忧虑。下面就让我们聆听耶稣的教训,看看祂要如何帮助我们更好地控制对诸事的忧虑。

令人窒息的项圈

基督了解忧虑所给我们带来的试探。在“登山宝训”中,祂谈到了一种普遍的焦虑:

“所以我告诉你们:不要为生命忧虑吃什么,喝什么,为身体忧虑穿什么。生命不胜于饮食吗?身体不胜于衣裳吗?你们看那天上的飞鸟,也不种,也不收,也不积蓄在仓里,你们的天父尚且养活它。你们不比飞鸟贵重得多吗?你们哪一个能用思虑使身量多加一肘呢?”(马太福音6:25-27)

有人忧虑过重,消耗了自己大量的时间和精力。他们为如何拥有丰富的生活而痛苦不堪,而就在他们为此忧心忡忡时,幸福生活已从他们的指间溜走。他们越是忧虑,就陷得越深。一个躺在病床上的工作狂,很少会为自己没能花更多的时间在办公室里攻坚克难而后悔。相反,他们往往会因为自己没有花更多的时间陪伴家人而难过。耶稣告诉我们:生活的意义绝不仅仅是积累财富、穿着时髦、或是拥有动人身材这么肤浅。

忧虑的定义是:对可能发生的事感到焦虑。这个词源自古盎格鲁-撒克逊的单词“wyrgan”,意思是“窒息”或“勒死”。这让我联想到系在狗脖子上的项圈——你拉得越是用力,狗就越挣扎着要喘气。

然而,忧虑并不能为你带来什么。研究表明,人们所担心的事,最后有百分之八十五并未发生。而另外发生的百分之十五,多数人表示,他们处理得很好!耶稣以一种非常有趣的方式强调了忧虑的无用,祂问道:“忧虑能使你们的身量多加一肘吗?”(马太福音6:27)答案是否定的。

从自然界中得到灵感

耶稣让我们关注飞鸟,并借此说明,一种确信的态度将帮助我们在生活中振翅高飞。祂说:“你们看那天上的飞鸟。”在我第一次读到这节经文时,心想:“主啊,我有那么多问题,哪有工夫去看鸟儿啊!那些鸟儿又没有我身上的这些麻烦。”

你见过有哪只鸟儿带着公文包去上班,或是囤积食物?显然不可能(也许蜂鸟除外)。鸟儿们的一天通常会以歌唱开始,即或有零星的小雨,也不会打搅到这些无忧无虑的生灵——它们必须相信造物主会喂养它们。把你的农作物收进仓里,或是提前做些计划,这无可厚非。但底线是,无论环境如何,我们都要相信,有一位慈爱的天父,祂会照顾我们。

救主曾藉着“即或是一只小小的麻雀掉在地上祂都知道”来说明,祂对世间极微之事的关怀,也是无微不至的。(见马太福音10:29)接着,耶稣说:“所以,不要惧怕,你们比许多麻雀还贵重。”(马太福音10:31)当我们真正相信,在上帝慈爱的圣手中,我们必安然无恙时,忧虑就会消失。

为了不让我们忧虑,基督还让我们注目花朵。

“何必为衣裳忧虑呢?你想:野地里的百合花怎么长起来;它也不劳苦,也不纺线;然而我告诉你们,就是所罗门极荣华的时候,他所穿戴的还不如这花一朵呢!你们这小信的人哪!野地里的草今天还在,明天就丢在炉里,上帝还给它这样的妆饰,何况你们呢!”(马太福音6:28-30)

祂让我们的眼睛关注光明和喜乐。美丽的百合花从不会为穿戴忧虑。在基督时代,拥有衣服是件很难的事,因为人们要花费大量时间去织就一套衣服。在今日的美国,几乎没有人亲自缝制衣服,但很多人会花费大量时间去选购最新的流行款式。而此刻耶稣问你:“花费大量的时间和金钱去换取幸福,真的管用吗?”

观察一下百合花那无与伦比的美丽,呼吸一下玫瑰花那沁人心脾的芬芳。造物主对兰花、郁金香、甚至普通雏菊的关注,实在无法与祂对其儿女的爱相提并论。

如果上帝对那些倏忽急逝的花鸟都如此在意,祂难道不会更加关心和爱护那按祂形像所造的人吗?

只有一件!

一天,耶稣来到祂朋友的家中,并和一位正与忧虑争战的女人聊了起来。

“他们走路的时候,耶稣进了一个村庄。有一个女人名叫马大,接祂到自己家里。她有一个妹子名叫马利亚,在耶稣脚前坐着听祂的道。”(路加福音10:38,39)

你能想象一下基督到访你家的情形吗?耶稣喜欢和朋友们在一起。祂最喜欢去的放松之所,其中一个便是马利亚、马大和拉撒路的家。在这次特别的到访中,马利亚安静享受着坐在耶稣脚前聆听祂智慧话语的时光。但在这个故事中,有一个人却并不轻松——她很忧虑。

“马大伺候的事多,心里忙乱,就进前来,说:‘主啊,我的妹子留下我一个人伺候,你不在意吗?请吩咐她来帮助我。’”(40节)你是否曾因“伺候的事多”而心烦意乱?也许你和马大一样,为给一屋子的客人准备晚餐而发愁。

她在厨房里削土豆,做饼,忙得团团转,出了一身汗。喂饱13个饥肠辘辘的人可不是件轻松的事儿。

匆忙中,马大向客厅里瞥了一眼,结果发现自己的妹子正“渴慕地”坐在耶稣脚前,而自己却在为准备饭菜操心,于是心生怨气。甚至认为耶稣是她妹妹“不负责任”之行为的帮凶,并请求耶稣“吩咐她来帮我”。也许你能理解马大的感受。

请注意耶稣的回应,这同样是在对你我说话。耶稣回答说:“马大,马大!你为许多的事思虑烦扰,但是不可少的只有一件,马利亚已经选择那上好的福分,是不能夺去的。”(41,42节)基督温柔地提醒这位女主人:许多事情会使我们忧虑,但忧虑的解药乃是敬拜——让你的眼睛注视耶稣,让你的耳朵倾听上帝的话语。

你是否在忧虑中消耗了大量的时间和精力呢?请走进大自然,思考上帝为你创造、让你享受的一切——这是上帝对你的爱的美好提醒——然后安静地坐在耶稣脚前,通过选择“那上好的福分”,你会找到一位负担者,祂会处理你所有的麻烦。真正的敬拜能消除你的一切忧虑。


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WORRYING ABOUT STUFF

by Pastor Doug Batchelor

An Amazing Fact: Worry is a "silent killer" that can lead to heart disease, high blood pressure, chest pain, and an irregular heartbeat. Some of the most stressful jobs in the United States include being a surgeon, commercial airline pilot, photojournalist, or a real estate agent. The top-three most stressful cities in which to live in America are Chicago, Los Angeles, and New York.


Two friends were enjoying lunch together when one of them asked, "How are things going in your life these days?"

The other replied, "Well, my house is in foreclosure, I lost my job, my medical insurance has been cancelled, and my credit cards are maxed out."

"Wow!" the first said with great concern. "How are you coping?"

"I m not worried," the friend smiled. "I ve hired a professional worrier to worry for me."

"What s that costing you?"

"He charges $50,000 a year."

The first gasped, "Where in the world are you going to come up with that kind of cash?"

"I don t worry about it," the friend laughed. "That s his job!"

But, seriously, have you ever been overwhelmed with worry? There is no limit to the things we can fret over—our kids, our health, our finances, our relationships, our material possessions, and even our salvation. Wouldn t it be nice if we could have someone do all our worrying for us? In a sense, we can, and the good news is it s free. The apostle Peter tells us to "[cast] all your care upon Him, for He cares for you" (1 Peter 5:7).

Indeed, Jesus commanded us not to worry—but don t let that worry you! Christ teaches us how not to worry by providing some inspiring lessons from nature. Let s look at how listening to Jesus will help us better manage our anxiety about, well, all kinds of "stuff."

A Choke Collar
Christ understands our temptation to worry. In the Sermon on the Mount, He addressed this pervasive anxious attitude:

I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature? (Matthew 6:25–27).


Some worry so much about stuff that they burn up an excessive amount of time and energy agonizing about how to have a fulfilling life. The problem is that the joyful life they want slips right through their fingers as they spend all that time brooding over how to live. They are sinking while they are thinking. Few workaholics lying on their deathbeds wish they had spent more time at the office solving problems; instead, they regret not spending more quality time with their families. Jesus told us that there is more to life than accumulating wealth, wearing the latest fashions, or obsessing over your physique.

Worry has been defined as feeling anxious about things that might happen. The word "worry" comes from an old Anglo-Saxon word "wyrgan," which means to choke or strangle. Worry reminds me of choke collars used on dogs—the harder you pull, the more your dog fights for breath.

Yet worry gets you nowhere fast. Studies show that 85 percent of what people worry about never happens. And of the 15 percent that did happen, most people said they handled things just fine. Jesus reinforced the uselessness of worry in a rather amusing way by asking, "Can worrying actually make you taller?" (Matthew 6:27). The obvious answer is no.

Take Your Cue from Nature
Jesus draws our attention to the birds to illustrate an attitude of trust that will help us soar in life. He said, "Look at the birds of the air." The first time I read that verse, I thought, "Lord, I ve got so many problems that I don t have time to look at birds! Birds don t have problems like mine."

Have you ever seen a bird carrying a briefcase to work or hoarding food? Of course not. (Except for maybe hummingbirds.) Birds usually begin their day by singing. A little rain doesn t bother these carefree creatures who must trust in their Creator to feed them. There s nothing wrong with gathering your produce in barns or planning ahead. The bottom line is that, no matter what circumstances on this earth bring, we live by faith in the knowledge that we have a loving heavenly Father who cares for us.

Our Savior once explained how God s care for even the small things in our world is so broad that He is aware when a little sparrow falls to the ground. Christ added, "Do not fear therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows" (Matthew 10:31). Worry melts away when we truly believe that we are safe in God s compassionate hands.

To help us not worry, Christ also said to look at the flowers.

So why do you worry about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin; and yet I say to you that even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. Now if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is, and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will He not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? (Matthew 6:28-30).


Jesus points our eyes to the bright and cheerful. Beautiful lilies don t have fretful looks while laboring over what they will wear. Back in the time of Christ, clothing was much harder to come by and people had to spend lots of time literally spinning and weaving their one set of clothes. Few people in America today sew their own garments, yet many spend hours and hours shopping for the latest trends. Jesus is asking you, "Does all that time and money spent trying to buy happiness really work?"

Observe the matchless beauty of a delicate lily. Breathe in the incomparable fragrance of a rose. The Creator s attention to the fine detail of an orchid, a tulip, or even the common daisy does not surpass the deep love He has for each of His children.

If God cares so much about flowers and birds that quickly perish, how much more does he love and care about people made in His image for whom His Son died to redeem for eternity?

One Thing Needed
One day while Jesus visited in the home of His friends, Christ addressed a woman who struggled with worry.

Now it happened as they went that He entered a certain village; and a certain woman named Martha welcomed Him into her house. And she had a sister called Mary, who also sat at Jesus feet and heard His word (Luke 10:38, 39).


Can you imagine Christ visiting in your home? Jesus enjoyed the fellowship of friends, and one of His favorite places to relax was in the home of Mary, Martha, and Lazarus. During this particular visit, Mary peacefully enjoyed sitting at the feet of Jesus, listening to His words of wisdom. But in this story, one person was not relaxed. She was worried.

"Martha was distracted with much serving, and she approached Him and said, Lord, do You not care that my sister has left me to serve alone? Therefore tell her to help me " (v. 40). Have you ever felt "distracted with much serving"? Maybe you ve felt like Martha, who was worried over getting dinner ready for a house full of guests. She was bustling around the kitchen peeling potatoes, chopping up salad, setting the table, and working up a sweat. It was no small affair to feed thirteen hungry men.

As Martha rushed around, she noticed out of the corner of her eye her sister "sitting wistfully" in the living room engrossed by the presence of Jesus. Her worry over getting the meal ready led to resentment in her heart toward Mary. She even felt Jesus was an accessory to her sister s "irresponsible" behavior and asked Christ to "tell her to help me." Maybe you know exactly how Martha felt.

Study closely how Jesus responded, for He is speaking to you and me here as well. "Jesus answered and said to her, Martha, Martha, you are worried and troubled about many things. But one thing is needed, and Mary has chosen that good part, which will not be taken away from her " (vv. 41, 42). Christ spoke gently to His hostess and reminded her that many things can cause us to worry, but the antidote for worry is worship—keeping your eyes fixed on Jesus and your ears open to the Word of God.

Do you burn up a lot of time and energy in worry? Go out into nature and reflect on the things God has created for you to enjoy-beautiful reminders of His love for you. Then quietly sit at the feet of Jesus. By choosing "that good part" you will find a Burden-bearer who will carry your troubles for you. True worship will evaporate your worries.