返回上頁



二○一九年七月六日/七月七日                                                                                            Click here for English version

請放手!讓上帝來!

黃志剛牧師

今個月是「放榜月」——IB 國際文憑試、升中派位、DSE 香港中學文憑試相繼在 7 月上旬公佈結果;一般學生在暑假前也會收到成績表,知道自己將會升級還是留級,然後才安心(或不安地)放假。「放榜月」年年如是,學生的學業壓力卻是與年俱增。而少年人的教會生活也往往反映了這實況,他們在崇拜、團契、主日學中的出席率變得不穩定,測考期間或前夕缺席的情況也見明顯。他們即使出席,也顯得很不專注,例如在課堂或分組時不斷撥手機、與鄰座友好交談而無視正在說話的導師或同學等。他們的心聲是:學習壓力很大,回到教會希望可以做自己想做的事。

這令我想起舊約聖經的參孫。他在母腹中已被上主揀選,作分別為聖的拿細耳人,要把當時的以色列人從非利士人手中拯救出來。在他年少的時候,他請父母為他娶一個非利士女子為妻;當父母質問他為何選上一個外族女子時,他回答:「因為我看中她」(士十四 1-3,新譯本)。這種「我鍾意」的取態與他的拿細耳人身分、父母的固有觀念、並當時的律法規定顯然是背道而馳。可是,聖經接著說:「他的父母卻不知道這事是出於耶和華,因為他正在找機會攻擊非利士人」(士十四 4)。整件事的關鍵不在於參孫的堅持是否正確,也不在於他父母是否失職,而在於上主在世事當中、人意之外掌管帶領。

若說參孫只是獨特例子(哪個孩童少年不是獨特的?),箴二十二 6 所說的可算是放諸四海皆準的智慧之言:「教養孩童走他當行的路,就是到老,他也不會偏離。」原文前半句的遣詞造句與中英文翻譯頗有出入——「教養」在其他經文中都用作表達所羅門奉獻聖殿給上主的行動;「孩童」其實泛指年少的孩子;「使他走當行的路」原意是「在他的路口上」。整句經文可用以下的圖象表達:我們把年少的孩子呈獻給主,讓他從路口邁步向前,走上主為他預備的道路;就算他長大成人,直至終老,也不會偏離他的路。

這世代的青少年活在多元和壓迫之中,渴求自由、自主與被愛。我們一方面要按照主的教訓和勸戒養育兒女(弗六 4),另一方面也要放開雙手,讓孩子走他自己的路(let go),並讓父神帶領管教他(let God),成就祂在他身上的美意。






Pastor's Sharing
Let Go! Let God!
Rev Patrick Wong


July is a time for exam result announcements. Results of the IB, secondary school places allocation and HKDSE will be out in the first half of July. School exam results will be available before the summer break. Students will know whether they can be promoted to the next level or not, which to a certain extent affects the mood of their vacation. As the years grow, so does the pressure they feel. This is evident in a change in their church life: they attend worship services, fellowships and Sunday School less regularly, particularly before and during exams. For those who attend, they may not be properly focused: they are engrossed in their mobile phones during Sunday school or small group sessions. They also chat with their neighbors regardless of the counselor or student sharing. They seem to have been subject to a lot of pressure from their studies, and cannot do what they really want to do until they get to the church.

This reminds me of Samson in the Old Testament who was to be a Nazirite, dedicated to God from the womb so he could take the lead in delivering Israel from the hands of the Philistines. When he was young, he asked his father and mother to get him a Philistine woman as his wife. When his parents asked why he had chosen a pagan woman, he replied: "Get her for me. She's the right one for me" (Judges 14:1-3). Samson's "I like it" attitude was obviously incompatible with his identity as a Nazirite. It is also contrary to his parents' established values and the Law of the time. But the Bible continued: "(His parents did not know that this was from the Lord, who was seeking an occasion to confront the Philistines; for at that time they were ruling over Israel.)" (Judges 14:4) The important thing here is not whether Samson's insistence was correct or whether his parents had taught him properly. Rather, it is in the fact that in all things, the Lord on high is in control and He leads us to our great amazement.

We cannot dismiss Samson as just an isolated case. Each and every young person among us is unique. There is great wisdom in Proverbs 22:6: "Start children off on the way they should go, and even when they are old they will not turn from it" (Proverbs 22:6). In the original language of the Bible, the verb for "start children off” is generally used for the act of Solomon in dedicating the temple to the Lord. Meanwhile, the original word for "children" refers to young people in general. And "the way they should go" originally means "at their crossroad." As such, the verse can be paraphrased like this: "Consecrate the young to God. Let them go beyond their crossroad and take the path that the Lord has prepared for them. This way, they will not depart from the prepared path when they grow up or even unto death."

In an era of pressure and pluralism, the children of this generation seek freedom, independence and love. We need to teach and exhort children and bring them up in the training and instruction of the Lord (Ephesians 6:4). At the same time, we need to let go —— let our children meet their own challenges, and let God do His work in leading and teaching them, accomplishing His good will for their lives.