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(原创)和基督徒相处的日子里我学到了什么?  

2012-12-10 14:00:56|  分类: 英语文章 |  标签: |举报 |字号 订阅

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What Did I Learn In The Days With A Christian?

I invited an Australian friend to come to China. He stayed at my home and we travelled together. He happens to be a pious Christian. This is the first time I have got a chance to watch how a Christian lives. Since the time when we stayed together is very short, only about half a month, my observation and comments may be far from being accurate or fair. I just tell what I saw and think about the experience. If I am wrong in some respects, feel free to point out.

我邀请一位澳大利亚朋友到中国来。他住在我家,我们一起旅行。他恰好是一位虔诚的基督徒。这是我第一次有机会看一看基督徒是如何生活的。因为我们待在一起的时间非常短暂,不过半个月而已,我的观察和看法可能很不精确,也不公平。我不过说一说我所看见的事情以及对这次经历的思考。要是我在某些地方弄错了,请随意指出来吧。

He lives a very simple life. No smoking, no drinking, and even no coffee. Happily for me, I found he likes tea, so I could serve him tea while I made a cup of tea for myself. He is not particular about food and loved everything I served him. He said blood of any kind should be strictly forbidden. Of course he prefers simple, ordinary food to strange and very expensive foods, such as dog meat or shark fin or swallow nest.

他生活俭朴,不抽烟,不喝酒,甚至连咖啡也不碰。我发现他喜欢喝茶,我很高兴,在我要喝茶时也给他来一杯。他很好招待,给他吃什么,他都喜欢。他说,各种血之类是要严格禁止的。当然,他喜欢简单,平常的食物;对于古怪,非常昂贵的东西,比如狗肉,鱼翅,燕窝等,他是不喜欢的。

In every way, he is a perfect and model husband, though his wife passed away a few months ago. Their marriage lasted for 46 years, and it had never occurred to them that he would leave her, or she would leave him. I ventured to ask him something private and sensitive, that is,  whether he would find another woman in the future. To my surprise, he told me that once they got married, they had become one, and would never separate. Though she is gone now, she is waiting for him in Heaven. They will meet there very soon. What’s the point of having another woman? He is firm that he won’t remarry. I was worried about the loneliness of his life, but he said he didn’t feel lonely at all. His family stays very close to each other and he is still busy doing a lot of work.

从各方面看,他都是一个完美,堪称楷模的丈夫,但是他的妻子在几个月前过世了。他们的婚姻长达46年,在此期间,他们从未有过要离开彼此的念头。我斗胆问了他一个私下的,敏感的问题:他是否会在将来再找一个伴侣?他的回答令我惊讶,他说,两个人结合后,就称为一个整体,再不会分离。虽然她现在不在了,她其实在天堂等着他。他们不久就会重逢。再找一个伴侣还有意义吗?他很坚决,不会再婚。我担忧他会过孤独的生活,但是他说他一点也不感到孤独。他的家庭联系紧密,而且他的工作也十分繁忙。

He usually gets up at five in the morning, unthinkably early in the modern standard, takes a quick shower, reads the Bible and meditates for a long time before breakfast. Before each meal, he made an open prayer, which made the meal meaningful. Meditation is one of the most luxurious things in our age. Many young people may never know what it is! But I do believe we all need it, at least once or twice a week. This practice is obviously good for self-reflection, purification of our mind, and making some room for new ideas.

他早上5点起床,从现代标准看,早的不可想象。快速冲个澡,读一会儿圣经,在早饭前还得沉思默想好长一段时间。每餐饭前,先作公开的祈祷,使得这顿饭有了意义。沉思默想是我们这个时代极为奢侈的事情之一。好多年轻人可能都不知道究竟是怎么回事。但我的确相信我们都需要,至少每周有个一,二次。这样做,显然对于自我反省,心灵的净化,腾出空间好接受新事物,都是有益的。

As a Christian, I wonder how often he goes to church. He didn’t tell me right away. Instead he explained that only the relationship between God and him counts. As for the rituals, they always come after the relationship. Faith always comes first. What he said makes sense. Meditation means your communication with Him in person, which is absolutely an indispensable part of your life.

既然是基督徒,多久去一次教堂呢?我感到好奇。他没有马上回答我。而是解释说,只有上帝和他本人的关系才是重要的,至于那些常规,都比不上那关系重要。个人信仰是第一位的。他说得很有道理。沉思默想意味着你和上帝面对面的交流,那绝对是你生活中不可或缺的一部分。

One day when he was riding in the car, the driver made a mistake and nearly hit the wall. Later I asked him if he was scared and worried about his safety. But he asked me in turn what I thought about it. Suddenly I realized that as a Christian is always in the hands of God, and God will take care of everything, so he had nothing to fear or worry about. Such a life is just wonderful, isn’t it? Can we expect anything better? In comparison, we atheists have so much to fear and worry about in our life. That’s why we can seldom be happy and in peace.

一天他坐车外出,司机不小心,差点撞了墙。之后,我问他当时是否害怕,担心自己的安全。但是他反过来问我是怎么看这件事的。我突然明白了,既然基督徒总是在上帝的关照下,上帝无所不能,他就没有什么可害怕,可担心的了。这样的生活不是妙极了么?还能期待有更好的生活么?比较起来,我们这些无神论者,在生活中害怕,担忧的事情很多。所以我们很难快乐,很难平静生活了。

It seems to me that Christians have ready answers to anything. For example, should we do good deeds without letting others know? Yes. But why? Think hard. The more we think, the more confused we will be. Finally we have to admit it is a lie! Any atheist who says so must be a shameless liar! But for Christians, it’s reasonable. If you do a good deed, you will be rewarded by Him. He knows everything, so why do you need to let others know? Another example, should we do bad things? No. But why not? We atheists don’t fear God, so we can do any bad things on condition that we are not caught. No wonder so many officials are so “brave”, they dare to do whatever they like, thinking nobody can stop them, because they know they have Power in their hands and they won’t be punished.

在我看来,基督徒好像对任何事都有现成的答案。举例来说,我们应该做好事不留名吗?当然,但是为什么呢?好好想一想,可越想就越是困惑。最后,我们不得不承认这是一个谎言。凡是这么说的无神论者都是无耻的撒谎者。但是对于基督徒来说,非常合理。如果你做了好事,上帝会奖励你,他知悉一切,你还有什么必要让别人知道呢?再举一个例子,我们应该做坏事么?当然不该。但是为什么呢?无神论者不畏惧上帝,所以什么坏事都可以干,只要不被抓住就行。难怪那么多官员胆子很大,敢于随心所欲,以为没有人可以阻止他们,因为他们知道有权在手,不会受到惩罚。

He gave me a Holy Bible, hoping I would read it. In fact, I read the most-widely-read book twice when I was in college over 20 years ago. It was an English version. The Chinese edition seems very strange because of the poor translation. I am fascinated by their way of life, and even in envy of their simple happiness. However, to be honest and frank, I find it very hard to join them. But Saul was converted, why can’t I? Or my life would be meaningless.

他给了我一本圣经,希望我会读一读。实际上,20多年前在大学学习时,我就读过这本读者最多的书。那是英文版的,中文版的因为翻译的问题,读起来很古怪。我对于他们的生活方式很感兴趣,甚至羡慕他们那种简单的快乐。不过,老实说,我发现要加入到他们那个圈子里去,是一件很难的事情。但是,扫罗*都可以皈依,我有什么不能呢?没有信仰,人生就没有意义了。

*注:扫罗曾经是不相信上帝的,做了很多事情来对抗上帝,可以说是犯下大罪的。但是上帝偏偏让他成为自己忠实的信徒。

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