Bob Tamasy: What’s God Got To Do With It?

Monday, April 14, 2014 - by Bob Tamasy
Bob Tamasy
Bob Tamasy

There’s been considerable discussion about how – and even if – spiritual faith should intersect with how a privately-owned company should be run. What’s God got to do with it, right? The question has even reached the steps of the U.S. Supreme Court.

I’m not the person to weigh in on this issue from a legal perspective, but a broader concern is involved here. We often hear religion or faith described as “personal,” as if it’s something to be stored away and dragged out only at appointed times and special occasions. “Faith is faith, and work is work, and never the twain shall meet” seems what society would have us believe.

This type of thinking often manifests itself in all strata of society, including the Oval Office. When President Obama discusses issues of faith, he often uses the term “freedom of worship” rather than “freedom of religion.” This distinction is significant.

The First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution is very specific in guaranteeing freedom of religion, and to me this is very different from freedom of worship. In the minds of many, worship is an isolated religious activity, removed from the flow of everyday life. To them it takes place in a church, synagogue, temple, mosque or other worship center – set apart from daily realities. 

This might suffice as “religion” for some, but many people sincerely find their beliefs influencing every aspect of their lives. Frankly, I cringe when people call me “religious.” To me that sounds rigid and superficial. I prefer being considered very spiritual, my spirituality being informed by the Bible.

There was a time when I, too, confined my religious/spiritual activities to an hour or two on a Sunday, only to spend the rest of the day – and remainder of the week – living as if there were no God. I’d attend worship services, then get frustrated in the church parking lot because people in front of me were slow in exiting. They were making me late for the football game on TV! 

Then a discovery transformed what I believed: God was not a deity who’s “out there,” distant and unknowable, but Someone desiring an up-close-and-personal relationship with me. This meant much more than having my sins forgiven and receiving the promise of eternal life. It meant a new way for living each day, gaining God’s power to pursue life as He desired. God didn’t just want a sliver of my life, an hour or two each week. He wanted all of me, including my work.

Years ago a friend introduced me to Acts 17:28 which states, “For in him (Jesus) we live and move and have our being.” This means more than having a different mindset; it also involves changing our “modus operandi” – our method of operation or way we do things. 

One of the curious aspects of Westernized thinking is we can claim to believe one thing and then unapologetically act in contradiction to that belief. However, the Bible clearly teaches true belief means acting upon what you believe. “In the same way, faith by itself, if it not accompanied by action, is dead” (James 2:17).

Over the years I’ve met hundreds of business and professional people, devoted followers of Jesus, whose thinking and actions are shaped by principles and truths they’ve learned in the Bible. They can’t separate their professional lives from their faith any more than they could remove their heads and continue walking. 

The apostle Paul stated, “…I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me” (Galatians 2:20). This is true for every genuine follower of Jesus. Spiritually, His life is manifested in us and He affects every dimension of our being.

It’s not a matter of being “religious,” or of worship for that matter. It’s a matter of living out the values and convictions Christ has given us – and this includes the workplace, whether we’re business owners, top executives, or simply employees. 

To do otherwise is truly hypocritical.

---

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, www.bobtamasy.blogspot.com, and www.bobtamasy.wordpress.com. He can be emailed at btamasy@comcast.net.


"Where Do You Get Your Strength?" Sermon Series Begins Sunday At Middle Valley COG

Middle Valley Church of God announces that Pastor Mitch McClure will speak on the topic "I'll Find Some Strength Somewhere," in the 10:30 a.m. service on Sunday.  This is part of a sermon series titled Where Do You Get Your Strength? This sermon series will focus on the source of strength and power for the Christian.       Pastor McClure will lead the church ... (click for more)

Mount Canaan Baptist Hosts STUFF Giveaway

Mount Canaan Baptist Church is hosting its annual S.T.U.F.F. (Special Treasures Unique For Free) Giveaway on Saturday, April 30, from 9:30 a.m. – 1:30  p.m. This event will be held at the church’s 4801 Highway 58 campus (Formerly the Hwy 58 K-Mart). There will be clothing, shoes, furniture, household items, and more. Everything is free. Hamilton County Sheriff’s Office ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Firefighter Arrested For Robbery Of Hixson Convenience Store

The Chattanooga Police Department has arrested a Chattanooga firefighter in connection with a robbery on Sunday morning. The firefighter has been identified as Steven Kyle Ratledge. Firefighter Ratledge was assigned to Station 19 in Hixson and has been with the department for approximately 3 1/2 years. Firefighter Ratledge has been placed on leave without pay as the investigation ... (click for more)

Rescuers Help Man After He Falls 30 Feet From Signal Bluff

Rescuers helped a man back up after he fell 30 feet on a Signal Mountain bluff on Saturday night. However, he was not seriously injured. At 11 p.m., a 911 call was made reporting the fall. Walden's Ridge Emergency Services responded to 1425 East Brow Road. When rescue personnel arrived on the scene, they reported a 25-year-old male had fallen 30 feet off the side of ... (click for more)

Being Proactive With Parkinson's Disease

Parkinson’s disease is the second most common neurodegenerative disease after Alzheimer’s and is the 14th leading cause of death in the United States. It affects an estimated one million Americans and four to six million worldwide,  There is no cure for Parkinson’s, and 60,000 new cases are diagnosed each year in the United States alone. Source: National Parkinson’s Foundation  ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: My Garden In May

Back when we were kids this day’s battle cry was, “Hooray, hooray for the First of May! Outdoor swimming starts today! With temperatures in the high 80s and we dive in to a new month, our monthly walk in a garden heavy with spring time pollen looks promising … AN ORCHID for the movie “Rocky” on its 40 th anniversary: “Let me tell you something you already know. The world ain’t ... (click for more)