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标杆人生 第11天 成为神的挚友

11

Becoming Best Friends with God

第十一天 成为神的挚友

Since we were restored to friendship with

God by the death of his Son while we were still his enemies, we will certainly be delivered from eternal punishment by his life.

Romans 5:10 (NLT)

我们原是上帝的仇敌,但是籍着祂儿子的死,

祂使我们成为祂的朋友。既然成为祂的朋友,

我们不更籍着基督的生而得拯救吗?

(罗马书五章10节,现代中文译本)



God wants to be your best friend.

神想成为你的挚友。

Your relationship to God has many different aspects: God is your Creator and Maker, Lord and Master, Judge, Redeemer, Father, Savior, and much more.' But the most shocking truth is this: Almighty God yearns to be your Friend!

你与神有多重关系,神是你的创造者、主人、审判官、赎罪者、父亲、救主...等许多。但最令人震撼的事是一全能的 神渴望成为你的好朋友!

In Eden we see God's ideal relationship with us: Adam and Eve enjoyed an intimate friendship with God. There were no rituals, ceremonies, or religion-just a simple loving relationship between God and the people he created. Unhindered by guilt or fear, Adam and Eve delighted in God, and he delighted in them.

在伊甸园里,我们看见神与我们的理想关系,亚当与夏娃享受与神亲密的友谊,没有仪式、宗教或教条,只是神与訑所创造的人之间简单的爱的关系。没有内疚与恐惧,因此亚当夏娃以神为乐,神也喜悦他们。

We were made to live in God's continual presence, but after the Fall, that ideal relationship was

lost. Only a few people in Old Testament times had the privilege of friendship with God. Moses and Abraham were called "friends of God," David was called "a man after [God's] own heart," and job, Enoch, and Noah had intimate friendships with God. But fear of God, not friendship,

was more common in the Old Testament.

本来我们受造是要一直与神同在的,但当人犯罪,这种完 美关系就消失了。旧约时代只有少数人有这样的荣宠,与神有深厚的友谊。摩西和亚伯拉罕被称为「神的朋友」,戴维被称为「合神心意的人」,而乔布、以诺与挪亚与神都有亲密的情谊。但在旧约圣经中,大部分的人是惧怕神多过把神当成朋友。

Then Jesus changed the situation. When he paid for our sins on the cross, the veil in the temple that symbolized our separation from God was split from top to bottom, indicating that direct access to God was once again available.

Unlike the Old Testament priests who had to spend hours preparing to meet him, we can now approach God anytime. The Bible says, "Now we can rejoice in our wonderful new relationship with God-all because of what our Lord Jesus Christ has done for us in making us friends of God." 

然而,耶稣改变了这个情况,当它在十字架上为我们的罪付上赎价的时候,象征神人隔绝的圣殿幔子从上到下裂开,表示人再一次可以直接亲近神了。旧约时代的祭司要用很多的时间预备见神,现在我们则可以随时随地与神亲近。圣经说:「全都因为主耶稣基督为我们所做的,我们得以与神成为朋友,现在我们可以欢心雀跃地享受与神奇妙美好的新关系了。」

Friendship with God is possible only because of the grace of God and the sacrifice of Jesus.

"All this is done by God, who through Christ changed us from enemies into his friends." The old hymn says, "What a friend we have in Jesus," but actually, God invites us to enjoy friendship and fellowship with all three persons of the Trinity: our Father,' the Son,6 and the Holy Spirit.'

我们可以成为神的朋友,是因为神的恩典和耶稣的牺牲。「一切都是出于神,祂借着基督使我们与祂由仇敌变为朋友。」

圣诗说:「耶稣是我恩友」(What a friend we have in Jesus),事实上,神还邀请我们与三位一体的圣父、圣子、圣灵成为朋友。



Jesus said, "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.” The word for friend in this verse does not mean a casual acquaintance but a close, trusted relationship. The same word is used to refer to the best man at a wedding and a king's inner circle of intimate, trusted friends. In royal courts, servants must keep their distance from the king, but the inner circle of trusted friends enjoy close contact, direct access, and confidential information.

耶稣说:「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:因我从我父所听见的,已经都告诉你们了。」经文中「朋友」一词不是指普通朋友,乃是指亲密可靠的情谊。原文里「朋友」这这个字与婚礼中的伴郎,以及国王身边的亲密可靠的朋友,是同二个字。在皇宫内,仆人必须与国王保持距离:但若是在国王亲密可靠圈内的朋友,则可以直接与国王见面,聆听机密事件。

That God would want me for a close friend is hard to understand, but the Bible says, "He is a

God who is passionate about his relationship with you.'

God deeply desires that we know him intimately. In fact, he planned the universe and orchestrated history, including the details of our lives, so that we could become his friends. The Bible says,

"He made the entire human race and made the earth hospitable, with plenty of time and space for living so we could seek after God, and not just grope around in the dark but actually find

him."

Knowing and loving God is our greatest privilege, and being known and loved is God's greatest pleasure. God says, "If any want to boast, they should boast that they know and understand me....

These are the things that please me."

我们可能难以理解神竟然要和我们作亲密的朋友,但圣经说:「祂是那位热衷与你建立关系的神。」神深切地想要我们亲密地认识它。事实上,神规划宇宙、主导历史以及我们生命里所有的细节,为要我们成为它的朋友。圣经说:「祂从一人造出万族,使他们散居在整个地面上,而且为他们预先定下了年限和疆界。祂这样做是要他们寻求神,或者能够在摸索中找到祂。」

认识神幷爱神,是我们最高的荣幸:被我们认识与爱慕,是神最大的喜悦。神说:「夸口的却要因了解我,认识我而夸口......,因为我喜悦这些事。」

It's difficult to imagine how an intimate friendship is possible between an omnipotent, invisible, perfect God and a finite, sinful human being. It's easier to understand a Master-servant relationship or a Creator-creation relationship or even Father-child. But what does it mean when God wants me as a friend? By looking at the lives of God's friends in the Bible, we learn six secrets of friendship with God. We will look at two secrets in this chapter and four more in the next.

我们很难想象,有限、有罪的人怎能与这位无所不能、人眼不能见,完美无瑕的神成为朋友? 主人与仆人、创造与被造,甚至父子的关系,都较易明白接受。但神要与我们成为朋友是什么意思? 观察多位圣经中神的朋友的生活,我们可以学习到与神为友的六个秘诀。在这一章中,我们先研究两个秘诀,下一章再讨论其余的四个秘诀。

BECOMING A BEST FRIEND OF GOD

成为神的挚友——借着时常交谈

Through constant conversation. You will never grow a close relationship with God by just attending church once a week or even having a daily quiet time. Friendship with God is built by sharing all your life experiences with him.

你若想只靠着每星期去教会一次,或甚至每天一段的灵修时间,便永远无法与神建立出亲密的关系。与神的情谊必须建立在与神分享你所有的人生经历。

Of course, it is important to establish the habit of a daily devotional time with God, but he wants more than an appointment in your schedule. He wants to be included in every activity,

every conversation, every problem, and even every thought. You can carry on a continuous, open-ended conversation with him throughout your day, talking with him about whatever you are doing or thinking at that moment. "Praying without ceasing" means conversing with God while shopping, driving, working, or performing any other everyday tasks.

当然,每天灵修是很重要的,但神期望的远超过每天一次的例行约会:祂更盼望参与你生活中每个活动、每次谈话,每个难题,甚至每个想法。你可以一整天与祂天南地北,无所不谈地,告诉祂你做什么、想什么。「不住地祷告」的意思是,当你购物,驾车、工作做每天的例行工作时,都与神谈话。

Knowing and loving God is our greatest privilege, and being known and loved is God's greatest pleasure.

A common misconception is that "spending time with God" means being alone with him. Of course, as Jesus modeled, you need time alone with God, but that is only a fraction of your waking hours. Everything you do can be "spending time with God" if he is invited to be a part of it and you stay aware of his presence.

人们常误解「与神在一起」就是单独与祂一起。当然,我们必须如同耶稣向我们示范的那样,与神有独处的时刻,但那只占你醒着时的小部分时间。假如你邀请祂参与在你所做的每一件事情上,你也认知祂的临在其中,那么无论你做什么,都是「花时间与神相处」,

The classic book on learning how to develop a constant conversation with God is Practicing the Presence of God. It was written in the seventeenth century by Brother Lawrence, a humble cook in a French monastery. Brother Lawrence was able to turn even the most commonplace and menial tasks, like preparing meals and washing dishes, into acts of praise and communion with God. The key to friendship with God, he said, is not changing what you do, but changing your attitude toward what you do. What you normally do for yourself you begin doing for God, whether it is eating, bathing, working, relaxing, or taking out the trash.

学习不断与神交谈的一本经典之作是《实践神的同在》 (Practicing the Presence of God),这本书的作者劳伦斯弟兄 (Brother Lawrence),是十七世纪法国修道院一名不起眼的厨师,他可以把煮饭和洗碗碟等普通琐碎的事情,转化为赞美神、与神相交的行动。他认为,与神建立友谊的关键不是改变你所做的事,乃是改变你做事的态度。从现在开始,把本来为自己做的事,如进食、洗澡、工作、休息、倒垃圾等,转变成为神而做。

Today we often feel we must "get away" from our daily routine in order to worship God, but that is only because we haven't learned to practice his presence all the time. Brother Lawrence found it easy to worship God through the common tasks of life; he didn't have to go away for special spiritual retreats.

This is God's ideal. In Eden, worship was not an event to attend, but a perpetual attitude; Adam and Eve were in constant communion with God. Because God is with you all the time, no place is any closer to God than the place where you are right now. The Bible says, "He rules everything and is everywhere and is in everything."

今天我们常觉得需要「放下」日常的工作去敬拜神,这是因为我们没有学会经历祂时刻同在的缘故。劳伦斯弟兄发觉,通过日常生活中的琐事敬拜神是一件轻松容易的事,他无须放下工作去做特别的属灵退修。这正是神认为最理想的情况。在伊甸园里,敬拜不是一场聚会让你去参加,乃是一种不断持续的态度:亚当,夏娃与神乃是处在一种不断的相交当中。既然神任何时候都与你同在,就没有任何地方比你目前这一刻所在之处更靠近神的了。圣经说:「祂在万有之中,统御万有,贯彻万有。」

Another of Brother Lawrence's helpful ideas was to pray shorter conversational prayers

continually through the day rather than trying to pray long sessions of complex prayers. To maintain focus and counteract wandering thoughts, he said, "I do not advise you to use a great multiplicity of words in prayer, since long discourses are often the occasions for wandering." In an age of attention deficit, this 450-year-old suggestion to keep it simple seems to be particularly relevant.

劳伦斯弟兄另一个很有帮助的方法是,整天不断以简短交谈的方式祷告,而不作冗长复杂的祷告。要能专注又不致分心,他说:「我不建议你使用许多重复的字句来祷告」对于今天这个「注意力涣散」的时代,这个450年前的建议特别适用。

The Bible tells us to `pray all the time.” How is it possible to do this? One way is to use "breath prayers" throughout the day, as many Christians have done for centuries. You choose a brief sentence or a simple phrase that can be repeated to Jesus in one breath: "You are with me." "I receive your grace." "I'm depending on you." "I want to know you." "I belong to you." "Help me trust you." You can also use a short phrase of Scripture: "For me to live is Christ." "You will never leave me." "You are my God." Pray it as often as possible so it is rooted deep in your heart. Just be sure that your motive is to honor God, not control him.

圣经叫我们「一直祷告」,可能吗?有一个办法是整天使用「呼吸祷告」(breath Prayers),历世历代以来许多基督徒都这样做。选择一个简短的句子,不断地以一口气重复地向耶稣说,例如:「你与我同在」、「我接受你的恩典」、「我要倚靠你」、「我属于你」、「我要认识你」、「帮助我信靠你」...等。也可以使用简短的圣经节,比如: 「活着就是基督」、「你永不离弃我」、「你是我的神」、「为基督而活」等,以此不断地祷告,直到这些话语深植在你心里。只要切记你的动机是要荣耀神,而不是想控制祂。

Practicing the presence of God is a skill, a habit you can develop. Just as musicians practice scales every day in order to play beautiful music with ease, you must force yourself to think about God at different times in your day. You must train your mind to remember God.

At first you will need to create reminders to regularly bring your thoughts back to the awareness that God is with you in that moment. Begin by placing visual reminders around you. You might post little notes that say, "God is with me and for me right now!" Benedictine monks use the hourly chimes of a clock to remind them to pause and pray "the hour prayer." If you have a watch or cell phone with an alarm, you could do the same. Sometimes you will sense God's presence; other times you won't.

实践与神同在是需要学习的,是一项你可以建立的习惯。就好象音乐家要每天练习音阶,才能轻松地演奏出美妙的音乐,你也要勉强自己在每天不同的时刻思想神。你必须训练你的心思常常思想神。开始时,你可以在四周用许多视觉辅助来提醒你自己,比如,你也许可以贴一张小纸条,上面写着说:「这一刻,神正与我同在,随时帮助我!」本笃会 ( Benedictine)的修士使用每小时响一次的钟,来提醒他们停下来作「每小时的祷告」。你也可以用闹表或可定时的行动电话,来提醒自己这样做。有时我们会感到神的同在,有时却不会。

If you are seeking an experience of his presence through all of this, you have missed the point. We don't praise God to feel good, but to do good. Your goal is not a feeling, but a continual awareness of the reality that God is always present. That is the lifestyle of worship.

如果你想用这些方法来寻求神同在的经验,那你就错了。我们赞美神,不是为要得到好的感觉,而是为了要行它喜悦的事。你的目标不是求感觉,而是不断意识到神随时随地与我们同在的事实,这才是敬拜的生活方式。

Everything you do can be "spending time with God" if he is invited to be apart of it and you stay aware of his presence.



Through continual meditation.

成为神的挚友——借着不断地默想

A second way to establish a friendship with God is by thinking about his Word throughout your day. This is called meditation, and the Bible repeatedly urges us to meditate on who God is, what he has done, and what he has said."

与神建立情谊的第二个方法是整天思想神的话,即是默想。圣经不断地提醒我们要默想神是谁、祂成就了什么事、说了什么话。

It is impossible to be God's friend apart from knowing what he says. You can't love God unless you know him, and you can't know him without knowing his Word. The Bible says God "revealed himself to Samuel through his word." God still uses that method today.

不认识神所说的话,就不可能成为它的朋友;除非你认识神,否则你就不可能爱神;你不认识祂的话语,就不能认识祂。圣经说,神「借着它的话语向塞缪尔显示祂自己。」神今天还继续用同样的方法。

While you cannot spend all day studying the Bible, you can think about it throughout the day, recalling verses you have read or memorized and mulling them over in your mind.

你虽然不能整天读圣经,却可以整天默想,反复思想所读的经节,幷且背记在心里。

Meditation is often misunderstood as some difficult, mysterious ritual practiced by isolated monks and mystics. But meditation is simply focused thinking-a skill anyone can learn and use anywhere.

默想常常被误解成一件困难又具神秘仪式的事,是遁世的僧侣们修行的方式。事实上,默想只是聚焦的思想,是一件任何人都能学,随处可做的技巧。

When you think about a problem over and over in your mind, that's called worry. When you think about God's Word over and over in your mind, that's meditation. If you know how to worry, you already know how to meditate! You just need to switch your attention from your problems to Bible verses. The more you meditate on God's Word, the less you will have to worry about.

当你心中不停地想着某个难题,那叫做忧虑;当你心中不停地想着神的话,那就叫做默想。你若知道怎么忧虑,你就已经知道怎样默想了!你只需要把注意力从你的难题转到圣经上就行了。你愈默想神的话,你的忧愁挂虑就愈少。

The reason God considered Job and David his close friends was that they valued his Word above everything else, and they thought about it continually throughout the day. Job admitted, "I have treasured the words of his mouth more than my daily bread.' 2° David said, "Oh, how I love your law! I meditate on it all day long." "They are constantly in my thoughts. I cannot stop thinking about them. "

神把约伯和大卫当成祂亲密的好朋友,因为他们珍惜它的话过于一切,幷且昼夜思想。约伯承认说:「我看重祂口中的言语,过于我需用的饮食。」大卫说:「我何等爱慕你的律法, 终日不住地思想。」「它们时刻在我的思想当中,我无法停止不去思想它们。」

Friends share secrets, and God will share his secrets with you if you develop the habit of thinking about his Word throughout the day. God told Abraham his secrets, and he did the same with Daniel, Paul, the disciples, and other friends.

朋友会分享彼此的秘密;你若养成终日思想神话语的习惯,祂也会和你分享秘密。神把秘密告诉亚伯拉罕、但以理、保罗、使徒及其它的朋友。

When you read your Bible or hear a sermon or listen to a tape, don't just forget it and walk away. Develop the practice of reviewing the truth in your mind, thinking about it over and over. The more time you spend reviewing what God has said, the more you will understand the "secrets" of this life that most people miss. The Bible says, "Friendship with God is reserved for those who reverence him. With them alone he shares the secrets of his promises."

当你读圣经、听道或听录音带,不要在离开后便忘记,应养成在心裹不断反复思想神的真理的习惯。你花愈多的时间反复回味神的话,就愈明白大部分人错过的生命的「奥秘」。 圣经说:「上主跟敬畏祂的人作朋友,把自己的约指示他们。」

In the next chapter we will see four more secrets of cultivating a friendship with God, but don't

wait until tomorrow. Start today by practicing constant conversation with God and continual meditation on his Word. Prayer lets you speak to God; meditation lets God speak to you. Both are essential to becoming a friend of God.

在下一章中,我们会探讨其它四个与神建立友情的秘诀,但请不要拖到明天,从今天便开始时刻与神交谈,幷不断默想神的话语。祷告让我们能与神说话,默想则让神对我们说话;这两点是成为神的朋友的基本要点。

DAY ELEVEN THINKING ABOUT MY PURPOSE

第11天 我的人生目的省思

Point to Ponder: God wants to be my best friend.

思想要点:神想成为我的好朋友。

Verse to Remember: "Friendship with God is reserved for those who reverence him." Psalm 25:14a (LB)

背记经文:「耶和华与敬畏他的人亲密;祂必将自己的约指示他们。」(诗篇廿五篇14节)

Question to Consider: What can I do to remind myself to think about God and talk to him more often throughout the day?

思考问题:我当如何每天提醒自己,要经常与神说话?
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