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托爾金(J. R. R.

Tolkien)的著名奇幻小
說《哈比人》,講的是比爾博•巴金斯的故
事。他是一個喜好安逸的哈比人,結果不甘
心情願的被迫和一位巫師及一群小矮人,一
起尋找龍的寶藏。一路上,他面臨各種艱險,
從妖精到充滿敵意的侏儒和巨大的蜘蛛群。

The Hobbit, by J. R. R. Tolkien, tells
the story of Bilbo Baggins, a comfortloving hobbit, who’s thrust into an
unwanted quest for dragon treasure
with a group of dwarves. He faces all
manner of hardships, from orcs to
hostile elves to giant spiders.

終於,這群冒險者到達了他們的目的地──巨
龍史矛革藏身的山上洞穴。山腰有一扇隱祕的
門,比爾博隻身一人從那裡進去面對巨龍,而
小矮人們則在外頭等待。當他穿過黑暗的地道
時,他聽到彷彿是水壺在爐子上開了的沸騰聲。
聲音越來越大,有如一隻巨貓在打呼。突然間
比爾博領會到,他聽到的正是巨龍在深穴中打
鼾的聲音。

Finally the group of adventurers reaches
their destination: the mountain lair of Smaug
the Dragon. Bilbo enters the dragon’s lair
through a secret door in the mountainside. All
the dwarves are waiting outside, and Bilbo has
to face the dragon alone. As he makes his way
through the dark tunnel, he hears what sounds
like a kettle bubbling on the stove. That sound
grows into what sounds like a giant cat
purring. Suddenly Bilbo realizes that he’s
hearing the sound of the dragon snoring in
the cave.

比爾博嚇壞了。他恨不得馬上折返,而他也幾
乎這麼做了,但卻決定仍然繼續進去。托爾金
寫道:「他繼續往前,那是他曾做過最勇敢的
事。後來發生的重大事情與之相比,可說是微
不足道。他在隧道裡獨自打那場真正的仗,直
至躺著在等待他的巨大危險最終出現在他眼
前。」

Bilbo is petrified. He wants nothing more than
to turn back, and he nearly does; but then he
decides to go on. Tolkien writes, “Going on
from there was the bravest thing he ever
did. The tremendous things that happened
afterward were as nothing compared to it. He
fought the real battle in the tunnel alone,
before he ever saw the vast danger that lay
in wait.”

我們都面臨過挑戰,甚至沒有機會看清前方是
什麼就想臨陣脫逃。與龍(或是其它可怕的障
礙)交手需要極大的勇氣。無論我們多麼堅強,
或試圖表現得堅強也好,我們往往缺少克服難
關所需要的勇氣。因此,我們可以從何處找到
這種面對生命挑戰的勇氣呢?

We all face challenges where we want to run
away before we’ve even had a chance to see
what’s ahead. Dealing with dragons (or other
scary obstacles) takes a whole lot of courage. As
strong as we are, or try to be, we often lack the
mettle that we’d need to overcome. So where can
we find the courage to face life’s challenges?

我們盡可剛強壯膽,因為上帝與我們同在。祂不會派
遣我們獨自出去面對我們的「龍」。祂必與我們同在,支
援我們,時時準備賜予我們力量和勇氣,並應許與我們同
在、幫助我們渡過一切。
你一旦向上帝祈求勇氣,就必須選擇去使用它,即使
你不覺得自己英勇無畏也好。當你啟程時,勇氣必與你相
伴。你若現在並非勇氣十足,也沒有關係。通常,勇氣只
是把一隻腳放在另一隻腳的前面,以一小步、一小步的方
式前進,有時候步子甚至很小很小。每當你做一個勇敢的
選擇,你在加強自己的勇氣,為迎接前方更大的挑戰做準
備。勇氣始於一個決定,並藉著經常操練而增長。

We can have courage because God is with us. He doesn’t send
us out to face our dragons alone. He’s right there with us,
backing us up, not only ready to give us strength and courage,
but also promising to meet us there and carry us through.
Once you’ve asked God for courage, you have to choose to use
it, even if you don’t feel courageous. It will be there for you as
you step out. If you don’t have a ton of courage right now, that’s
okay. Often, courage is simply putting one foot in front of the
other, taking small, sometimes even tiny, steps forward. Every
time you make a brave choice, you’re strengthening your
courage and preparing for the bigger challenges ahead. Courage
begins as a decision and grows as you consistently use it.

比爾博的勇氣,在他整個旅程上逐步增長。他
與可怕的敵人交戰,並戰勝了它們。他對付困難的
問題,並找到了解決方法。每次他勇敢地面對挑戰,
就是在培養更大的勇氣;而那在他面對巨龍時派上
了用場。
古希臘國王的侍衛,有這樣的格言:「懼怕人
人都有,但勇敢的人撇下他們的懼怕、勇往直前。」
因此,勇敢地面對你的龍吧。

Bilbo had been building up his courage little by
little throughout his journey. He fought fearsome
enemies and won. He tackled difficult problems and
found solutions. Each time he faced a challenge
bravely, it was an investment in courage; and those
investments paid off when it came time to face the
dragon.
The King’s Guard of ancient Greece had a motto:
“All men have fears, but the brave put down their
fears and go forward.” So face your dragons boldly.

雙語兒童故事 - www.freekidstories.org
“The Hobbit” artwork originally drawn by Tolkein; used under CC license. Other art © TFI.
Text courtesy of Activated magazine; used with permission.