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2012 禁食日记 – 第21天: “谁的罪?” 2012 Fasting Diary – Day 21: “Who sinned?”

 

第二十一天(27/08/12)

有时候我们真的需要学习同理心,也需要向神求怜悯的心肠;因为有时候看到别人落难或面对问题,我们不但不同情或体会他们的感受,反而还落井下石,在背后议论纷纷,批评人落到此下场的原因等等。

当然也有很多状况是个人的罪和愚昧带来的,那在适当的时候当然要好好教导和纠正;但太多时候我们是需要有怜悯心肠去体会人的感受和真正帮助他们解决问题,引领他们归向神,而至终会荣耀神。

“耶稣过去的时候,看见一个人生来是瞎眼的。 门徒问耶稣说:“拉比,这人生来是瞎眼的,是谁犯了罪?是这人呢,是他父母呢?” 耶稣回答说:“也不是这人犯了罪,也不是他父母犯了罪,是要在他身上显出神的作为来。”
~ 约 9:1-3 ~

 

Day 21 (27/08/12)

Sometimes we do really need to empathize with people and also ask God for a merciful heart; because there are times when people encounter troubles or face problems, instead of showing sympathy or understanding their feelings, we might instead rub salt into wounds by gossiping behind their backs, concluding the reasons they have fallen into such predicaments etc.

Of course there are also many situations where personal sins or foolishness are the cause, in those cases of course people need to be properly taught or corrected at the right time; but too many times we really need to have a merciful heart to appreciate people’s feelings and to truly help them solve their problems, and to lead them back to God and ultimately bringing glory to God.

“As he went along, he saw a man blind from birth. His disciples asked him, “Rabbi, who sinned, this man or his parents, that he was born blind?”“Neither this man nor his parents sinned,” said Jesus, “but this happened so that the work of God might be displayed in his life.”
~ John 9:1-3 ~

2012 禁食日记 – 第20天: “朋友” 2012 Fasting Diary – Day 20: “Friend”

 

 

第二十天(26/08/12)

耶和华说:“我所要做的事,岂可瞒着亚伯拉罕呢?”
~ 创 18:17 ~

上帝不只看亚伯拉罕是他的仆人,他确实把亚伯拉罕当作朋友,这是何等大的荣幸!如果一个很有名、很有势力的人把我们当作朋友,我们可感到多特别和满足,更何况是上帝!耶稣也告诉我们身为朋友的身份和感情的特殊点:

14 你们若遵行我所吩咐的,就是我的朋友了。 15 以后我不再称你们为仆人,因仆人不知道主人所做的事。我乃称你们为朋友,因我从父所听见的,已经都告诉你们了。”(约15:14-15)

他所指的这个要我们遵行的这吩咐,其实是叫我们身为他门徒的要彼此相爱,这样你也可以成为神的朋友了。。。

 

Day 20 (26/08/12)

Then the Lord said, “Shall I hide from Abraham what I am about to do?”
~ Genesis 18:17 ~

God did not just regard Abraham as a servant, He did indeed regard Abraham as a friend, this is such a great honour! If a very famous and powerful person regards us as a friend, we would feel so special and satisfied, what more to say if it is God! Jesus also told us the uniqueness of having the identity and relationship of a friend:

14 You are my friends if you do what I command. 15 I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you.”
(John 15:14-15)

The “command” here that Jesus wants us, His disciples to do is this: to love one another, if you could do that, you can become a friend of God…

2012 禁食日记 – 第19天: “老化” 2012 Fasting Diary – Day 19: “Aging”

 

 

第十九天(25/08/12)

担心衰老是人之常情,但老化却是无法改变与避免的事实。。。
人再怎样照顾健康、运动、保养,人终久敌不过岁月的摧残,尽管外在保养得宜,里面的器官和身体操作能力也会逐渐衰残。

但年纪大或老化并不表示你一定要“人老不中用”,圣经给我们清楚看到:我们这些蒙恩得救的义人,若成长在神的同在里,常与主亲密,我们依然可以很有效率,依然可以结出很多生命的果子祝福身边的许多人。所以我们身为主的门徒的,年纪越大不应当倚老卖老、哀声叹气、无奈等待痴呆症的到来!我们是可以到死都结满果子的!

“12 义人要发旺如棕树,生长如黎巴嫩的香柏树。
13 他们栽于耶和华的殿中,发旺在我们神的院里。
14 他们年老的时候仍要结果子,要满了汁浆而常发青”
~ 诗篇 92:12-14 ~

Day 19 (25/08/12)

It is quite normal for ordinary people to worry about growing old, but aging is a fact we cannot change or avoid…
No matter how one takes care of his health, exercises, preserves, he still cannot fight the cruel reality of time; even if the outward appearance is well-taken care of, the organs inside and functioning of the body will deteriorate still.

But as you get older or age does not mean you must becomes a “useless old man”, the Bible shows us clearly: For us, the righteous saved by grace, if we grow in the presence of God and always keep our intimacy with God, then we can still be very productive, and we can still bear a lot of fruit of life to bless many people around us.So, as the disciples of the Lord, we should not be whining about getting old and complaining about old age or waiting helplessly for senility to set in! We can still be bearing much fruit till the day we die!

12 The righteous will flourish like a palm tree,
    they will grow like a cedar of Lebanon;
13 planted in the house of the Lord,
    they will flourish in the courts of our God.
14 They will still bear fruit in old age,
    they will stay fresh and green”
~ Psalm 92:12-14 ~

2012禁食日记 – 第18天: “不会忘记” 2012 Fasting Diary – Day 18: “Not forgotten”

 

 

第十八天(24/08/12)

“15 皮袋的水用尽了,夏甲就把孩子撇在小树底下, 16 自己走开约有一箭之远,相对而坐,说:“我不忍见孩子死!”就相对而坐,放声大哭。17 神听见童子的声音,神的使者从天上呼叫夏甲说:“夏甲,你为何这样呢?不要害怕,神已经听见童子的声音了。 18 起来,把童子抱在怀[a]中,我必使他的后裔成为大国。””
~ 创 21:15-18 ~

夏甲从奴隶变富贵却不谦卑感恩,她的孩子以实玛利也傲慢自大。。。他们因自己的罪而掉入惨痛境遇,然而神却记念这是他忠心的朋友与仆人,亚伯拉罕的骨肉,所以施援手拯救还赐福。

所以,我们作父母的若真爱孩子,就当有智慧忠心于神与常尊荣他,他必记念你的后裔;我们身为亚伯拉罕的后裔又本身自己会忠心于神的,更要有把握神绝对不会忘记我们。

Day 18 (24/08/12)

“15 When the water in the skin was gone, she put the boy under one of the bushes. 16 Then she went off and sat down nearby, about a bowshot away, for she thought, “I cannot watch the boy die.” And as she sat there nearby, she[c] began to sob.17 God heard the boy crying, and the angel of God called to Hagar from heaven and said to her, “What is the matter, Hagar? Do not be afraid; God has heard the boy crying as he lies there. 18 Lift the boy up and take him by the hand, for I will make him into a great nation. ””
~ Gen 21:15-18 ~

Hagar was raised from a slave to an honourable position but she was not humble and grateful, her son Ishmael was also arrogant and proud… Because of their own sins, they fell into a terrible situation, however God remembered this was His faithful friend and servant Abraham’s flesh and blood, so He stretched out His merciful hand to rescue and even bless.

Therefore, as parents, if you truly love your children, you should have the wisdom to be faithful to God and always honour Him, He will surely remember your descendants. And we, as Abraham’s descendants and if we ourselves are faithful to God too, all the more we must be fully assured God will never ever forget us.

2012禁食日记 – 第十七天: “效法世界” 2012 Fasting Diary – Day 17: “Conforming to the world”

 

 

第十七天(23/08/12)

身为一个基督徒,甚至教会,我们很容易被过去的观念、现今世界局势、潮流和价值观影响;可能因面对压力、为了生活、个人利益关系、要讨人喜欢或怕得罪人等等。。。有时候不知不觉,或者想都没想就妥协了真理的教导或神的旨意。。。

日子久了,就会分辨不出到底是自己的意思、随波逐流,或神的旨意!
难怪保罗会提醒我们:

“不要效法这个世界,只要心意更新而变化,叫你们察验何为神的善良、纯全、可喜悦的旨意。”
~ 罗12:2 ~

“更新而变化”是一个持续的过程和行动,所以唯愿我们时刻警醒,常常在主面前诚实检讨与求主光照、鉴察我们的心思意念与动机。

Day 17 (23/08/12)

As a Christian or even church, we can be easily influenced by our past thinking, the current situation, trend and values of the world, probably due to pressures, daily living, self-interests, wanting to please others or not wanting to offend people etc… sometimes without realizing, or without thinking much, we have already compromised the teaching of God’s truth or His will…

After time goes by, we will not be able to discern what is our own will, following the world or God’s will!
No wonder Paul reminded us:

“Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is —his good, pleasing and perfect will.”
~ Romans 12:2 ~

“Be transformed by the renewing of” is an ongoing process and action, so hopefully we will always be alert, to always examine ourselves honestly before the Lord, and asking Him to reveal to us and search our hearts and thoughts and motives.

2012 禁食日记 – 第十六天:“敬拜者” 2012 Fasting Diary – Day 16: “Worshipper”

 

 

第十六天(22/08/12)

我们印象中的大卫,首先是一名追求神的敬拜者,也知道他是以色列最被爱戴的君王。
今天的我们,当我们提到敬拜者就会想像他是一位音乐人、歌者,或在教会敬拜团事奉的一位团员;而且很多时候,这些所谓敬拜团队的“事奉者”在生命、态度、人际关系上都挺糟糕。。。

固然教会一定有,也应该有所谓的敬拜或音乐团队;但事实上,敬拜不只局限于音乐、舞蹈、诗歌等等,更不是只停留在教堂四面墙里的一种表现。敬拜是一种生命,延伸至你的私人生活、家庭、事业、学业、人际关系等等。。。

单单撒母耳记上第18章就提到三次大卫“做事精明”,而且他还得人喜爱和尊重,这非常值得我们默想、思考和学习。。。

“5 扫罗无论差遣大卫往何处去,他都做事精明。扫罗就立他做战士长,众百姓和扫罗的臣仆无不喜悦。
14 
大卫做事无不精明,耶和华也与他同在。
30 
每逢非利士军长出来打仗,大卫扫罗的臣仆做事精明,因此他的名被人尊重。”
~ 撒上 18:5, 14, 30 ~

 

Day 16 (22/08/12)

Our impression of David, first and foremost was a worshipper after God’s own heart, and we also know he was the most loved king of Israel.
For us today, when we talk about a worshipper, we would imagine that is a musician, singer, or a member of the church’s worship team; and many times, these so-called worship team members can be quite terrible people in real life, attitude, inter-personal relationship with others…

Of course a church will have, and should have a so-called worship or music ministry; but  in actual fact, worship is not just limited to music, dance, songs etc, and even less just confined to performing within the four walls of the church-building. Worship is your life, extending to your private lifestyle, family, career, schools, relationship with others etc…

Just in Chapter 18 of 1 Samuel alone, David did things successfully was mentioned three times, and he found favour with people and won people’s respect. This is really something worth our meditating, thinking and learning…

“5 Whatever Saul sent him to do, David did it so successfully[a] that Saul gave him a high rank in the army. This pleased all the people, and Saul’s officers as well.
14 
In everything he did he had great success,[c] because the Lord was with him.
30 
The Philistine commanders continued to go out to battle, and as often as they did, David met with more success[f] than the rest of Saul’s officers, and his name became well known.”
~ 1 Samuel 18:5, 14, 30 ~

2012 禁食日记 – 第十五天:“那棵树” 2012 Fasting Diary – Day 15: “That tree”

 

第十五天(21/08/12)

“他要像一棵树,栽在溪水旁,按时候结果子,叶子也不枯干,凡他所做的,尽都顺利。”
~ 诗篇 1:3 ~

我们都希望能得着以上诗1:3的应许,按时候结果子即表示:该有什么样的反应就有什么反应、一缺乏什么就会有什么、该有什么样的收获就有什么样的收获等等;再者,所做的“尽都顺利”的意思是“发达亨通”。。。

然而,为什么太多时候我们都没看到自己结出这样的生命或果子?其实,答案很简单,还没抵达终点,一定先有起点和必须经过的过程,但我们往往不喜欢这种起点或过程,所以想越过或走捷径,因此所抵达的终点当然不一样。。。

该遵行的步骤与走的路是一定要走过的。。。
“不从恶人的计谋,不站罪人的道路,不坐亵慢人的座位,
唯喜爱耶和华的律法,昼夜思想,这人便为有福!
他要像一棵树,栽在溪水旁,按时候结果子,叶子也不枯干,凡他所做的,尽都顺利。”
~ 诗篇 1:1-3 ~

 

Day 15 (21/08/12)

“He is like a tree planted by streams of water,
    which yields its fruit in season
and whose leaf does not wither.
    Whatever he does prospers.”
~ Psalm 1:3 ~

How we all wish we can receive the promise the promise of Psalm 1:3 above, yielding its fruit in season means: we will have the right response when needed, we will have what we are lacking at the right time, we will harvest what we should be harvesting etc etc; also, we should be prosperous in whatever we are doing…

However, why is it that so often we do not see ourselves bearing such life and fruit? Actually the answer is very simple, before we reach the destination, there is always a starting point and necessary process or journey to go through, but normally we do not like the beginning or process, so we want to by-pass or find a shortcut which in the end causes us to arrive at a different destination of course…

We must really go through the steps to be followed and the path that is necessary…
“1 
Blessed is the man
    who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked
or stand in the way of sinners
    or sit in the seat of mockers.
But his delight is in the law of the Lord,
    and on his law he meditates day and night.
He is like a tree planted by streams of water,
    which yields its fruit in season
and whose leaf does not wither.
    Whatever he does prospers.”
~ Psalm 1:1-3 ~

2012 禁食日记 – 第十四天:“开始与过程” 2012 Fasting Diary – Day 14: “The beginning and process”

 

第十四天(20/08/12)

有时候我们读有关圣经伟人的故事,那些伟大的结局、震撼性的影响力、神迹奇事、蒙大福、成大器等等,我们都好羡慕,很希望自己也会有这种恩膏和成就,也能够如此荣耀神。。。

可是我们往往只是很片面的看他们伟大的事迹和成就,却忘了他们的开始与过程。以下两句短短的经文有多深的内涵啊。。。
这些伟人是听了又顺从神的指示,做神要他们做的,放弃、离开或拒绝自己喜欢的而顺服神的指示和带领。

“于是以利亚照着耶和华的话,去。。。”
~ 王上 17:5 ~

亚伯兰就照着耶和华的吩咐去了。。。”
~ 创 12:4 ~

我们多少次很伟大的唱着或祷告着:“主啊,带领我!”,可是我想可能上帝很多时候都想说:“我已经走了很长的一段路,你也没跟来。。。”

 

Day 14 (20/08/12)

Sometimes as we read the stories of the great men in the Bible, those outstanding outcomes, powerful lives with great impact, miracles and wonders, greatly blessed and used by God etc, we are so envious and wish we could also have such anointing and achievement, and that we could glorify God like them too…

But very often we only look selectively at their greatness and achievements, and forget their beginnings and processes. The two very short verses below contain such profound truth… these great men really listened and obeyed what God had told them, did what God asked them to, gave up, abandoned, left or refused their own liking and just obeyed God’s instruction and leading.

“So Elijah did what the Lord had told him…”
~ 1 Kings 17:5 ~

“So Abram left, as the Lord had told him…”
~ Genesis 12:4 ~

How many times have we sung or prayed so loudly: “Lead me, o Lord!”, but I think probably many times God wants to say to us: “I’ve been walking quite a distance already but I don’t see you following behind…”

 

2012 禁食日记 – 第十三天:“瓦器里” 2012 Fasting Diary – Day 13: “Inside the jar”

 

 

第十三天(19/08/12)

上帝早已经把一些宝贝放在我们这瓦器里面,圣灵也在我们里面酝酿做工,里面的宝贝有一天将要为主发光,照亮别人。。。

可是问题是,瓦器没被破碎,就看不见里面的宝贝;瓦器没被破碎,里面的光也照耀不出来。所以我们应当很谦卑的常常允许上帝在我们身上动工,该打破的就让他打破、该除掉的就除掉、该拆毁的就拆毁。。。

的确,没破碎就流露不出里面的芬芳来。。。你真的要上帝使用你吗?你愿意被破碎吗。。。?

“我们有这宝贝放在瓦器里,要显明这莫大的能力是出于神,不是出于我们。”
~ 林后4:7 ~

Day 13 (19/08/12)

God has long put some treasure in us, these jars of clay, and the Holy Spirit is also brewing and working in us, so that the treasure inside will one day shine for the Lord and brighten up others’ lives…

But the problem is, if the jar is not broken, people will not be able to see the treasure inside; if the jar is not broken, the light inside cannot shine. Therefore we should always be very humble to allow God to work on us, let Him break what should be broken, remove what should be removed, tear down what should be torn down…

Indeed, unless broken, the fragrance inside cannot flow out… do you really want God to use you? Are you willing to be broken…?

“But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us.”
~ 2 Corinthians 4:7 ~

2012 禁食日记 – 第十二天:“神开始的” 2012 Fasting Diary – Day 12: “God started it”

 

 

第十二天(18/08/12)

我们之所以会悔改信主是圣灵的感动与工作,我们都是神手中的工作。上帝拣选我们的时候,他已知道我们的背景、过去、软弱和未来,然而他还选择在我们身上动工。。。

我知道自己的诸多软弱,多少次的不顺服和让上帝难过,我对自己没把握,更不懂上帝为何拣选我。
但我更知道上帝的伟大与全能,也知道没有什么能够难倒他,慈悲怜悯的他也绝对不会半途而废;所以纵然我对自己缺乏把握,我对我的神有绝对的把握和信任,晓得他一定完成他所开始的工作。

我深信那在你们心里动了善工的必成全这工,直到耶稣基督的日子。”
~ 腓立比书 1:6 ~

Day 12 (18/08/12)

That we would repent and believe in the Lord is really the conviction and work of the Holy Spirit, we are all work in God’s hand. When God chose us, He already knew our background, past, weaknesses and future, yet He chose to work on us…

I know my own many weaknesses, the number of times I was being disobedient and when I hurt God, I have no confidence in myself, and even more so, I do not understand why God would want to choose me.
But one thing I know even better is God’s greatness and almighty power, and I know nothing is too difficult for Him, and our kind and merciful God will never stop His work halfway undone. Therefore, no matter how I lack confidence in myself, I have full confidence and trust in my God that He will accomplish what He has started to do.

being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.”
~ Philippians 1:6 ~