Bob Tamasy: Taking Things for Granted

Thursday, December 5, 2013 - by Bob Tamasy
Bob Tamasy
Bob Tamasy

Have you ever had a boss, family member, or even a spouse that rarely complimented you when you did something well, but was quick to bring it to your attention when you made a mistake? Makes you wonder, doesn’t it – if that person was so good at noticing when you did something wrong, why couldn’t he or she try to catch you doing something right?

Maybe that kind of approach was intended as a backhanded compliment. They expected us to do things properly, so it caught them by surprise when we made an error. (At least I’d like to think that was the case.) Sad, but isn’t that how we view many of the things we utilize every day?

For instance, when we stick the key in the ignition and the car starts up, we don’t call our friends and throw a party. But if we turn the key and nothing happens, or we hear only “click-click-click,” we’re ready to call the manufacturer, the dealership, the car repair service, or anyone who’ll listen to our complaints.

Cars are supposed to start. When they don’t, it catches us off guard. The same applies to TVs, furnaces and air conditioners, computers, cell phones and every other gadget we use on a regular basis. We take them for granted – until something goes wrong and we’re in crisis.

Several weeks ago, while moving some boxes to my garage, I turned awkwardly and twisted my knee. The stab of pain I felt instantly told me I’d made a wrong move, although I wasn’t aware of doing anything unusual. Over the next days my always-reliable, never-causing-me-any-trouble knee hurt. It was a real pain in the…knee. I hobbled around, even having to miss several of my morning exercise classes. Ibuprophen became my buddy.

I felt my knee had betrayed me. Joints are to be seen, not felt. Joints are supposed to be taken for granted. When you’re conscious of your joints moving, something’s not right.

We tend to hold a similar attitude toward spiritual faith. Even if we claim faith is an important part of our life, we take it with the proverbial grain of salt. As long as things are going well, it’s easy to claim strong faith in God. We say, “Thank you, Lord,” while patting ourselves on the back. But when problems arise, we wonder what’s wrong. “Lord, what have you done for me lately?”

Tough times reveal the genuineness of our faith. It doesn’t require a lot of faith when we’re feeling good, the bills are all paid, work’s going well, the car’s starting, our family’s in harmony, and the house is warm and cozy. But what happens to our trust and confidence in God when things aren’t going the way we want?

Hebrews 11:6 tells us, And without faith it is impossible to please God, because anyone who comes to him must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who earnestly seek him.” I don’t believe God brings adversity into our lives to watch us squirm. But He allows hardships because through those situations we’re reminded how desperately we need Him.

Another verse, Hebrews 11:1, states “Now faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” We don’t need to hope for resolutions to problems that are already solved, or for things we already possess. The eyes of faith assure us God will do for us those things we can’t see.

A friend has struggled with cystic fibrosis, a chronic lung disease, since childhood. Hard work and perseverance enabled him to live far beyond the most optimistic expectations of his physicians. He got married, had children and established a successful business career, despite his severe physical limitations. Through it all, his faith remained strong, trusting God for healing.

A few weeks ago he and his family saw their prayers answered. He received a double lung transplant, and today is progressing well in recovery, hopeful of many more years of fruitful life, loving his family and friends, and serving his Lord.

His faith gave substance to his hopes, evidence of God’s promise to restore his health when the medical experts said it wasn’t going to happen. He’s a living example of faith in action.

So the next time your faith is challenged, when your calm and tranquil life is disrupted by chaos, think of it as an opportunity to exercise that faith, to wait and see what God is going to do. And to be reminded that God is good – all the time.


Robert J. Tamasy is a veteran journalist, a former newspaper editor and magazine editor. He is presently vice president of communications for Leaders Legacy, Inc., a non-profit focused on mentoring and coaching business and professional leaders. Bob has written hundreds of magazine articles, and has authored, co-authored and edited more than 15 books. These include “Tufting Legacies,” “The Heart of Mentoring,” “Business at Its Best,” and “Pursuing Life With a Shepherd’s Heart.” He edits a weekly business meditation, “Monday Manna,” which is translated into more than 20 languages and distributed via email around the world by CBMC International. He also posts regularly on two blogs,, and He can be emailed at

North Terrace Church Of Christ To Hold Gospel Meetings April 20-22

North Terrace Church of Christ, 3701 North Terrace in Chattanooga, invites the public to their Gospel Meeting event from April 20-22.   Preaching will be by Jeff May from Athens, Al.   Meeting times and topics are: Friday, April 20, 7 p.m. - Revival:  Do You Need One? Saturday, April 21, 7 p.m. - The Israelite Journey:  It's Your Journey ... (click for more)

Middle Valley COG Continues "Moving Towards Victory" Series Sunday

Middle Valley Church of God announces that Pastor Mitch McClure will speak on the topic, Once And For All, Always,  in the 10:30 a.m. service this Sunday.   This sermon is part of a sermon series titled Moving Towards Victory.  "This series focuses attention to the reality that God wants to provide victory in the life of each and every believer," officials said.  ... (click for more)

Alexander Says Chickamauga Lock Construction Fully Funded For 4th Consecutive Year

Senator Lamar Alexander on Wednesday said the government funding bill will fully fund construction of Chickamauga Lock for the fourth consecutive year, providing up to $78 million – which is more than twice the amount of funding the project received last year.   Senator Alexander said he has made completion of Chickamauga Lock one of his top priorities as chairman ... (click for more)

Former Juvenile Court Magistrate Says Gay Marriage Is "Nothing You Put In Air Quotes"

A former magistrate at Juvenile Court, who claims she was fired by Judge Rob Philyaw because she is openly gay, said Wednesday that gay marriage "is nothing you put in air quotes." She referred to County Attorney Rheubin Taylor asking her about her ceremony in marrying another woman and raising his hands to form quote marks. Elizabeth Gentzler is suing Hamilton County, Judge ... (click for more)

Avoid Underage Drinking And Other Prom Drama

My high school prom took a dramatic turn when two guys got their tuxedo jackets mixed up. One of them belonged to my date, who kindly offered to keep my wallet in his pocket. That’s the jacket another young man mistakenly grabbed off the back of a chair before heading to an underage drinking party that got shut down by police well after midnight—as kids scattered in every direction.  ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: The Famed Freitas Speech

Several weeks ago a member of the Virginia House of Delegates (that’s what Virginia calls the state legislature) stood up and before that body responded to a claim by a Democratic lawmaker that Republicans were pro-Second Amendment and segregationists. Nick Freitas, who did two tours in Iraq with our Army’s Special Forces and has talked candidly about losing friends to terrorist ... (click for more)