Bob Tamasy: Someone’s Always Got Their Eye on You!

Thursday, February 16, 2017 - by Bob Tamasy
Bob Tamasy
Bob Tamasy
One of the fun characters in the Pixar animated film, “Monsters, Inc.,” is Roz, the slug-like, gravelly voiced administrator who warns her fellow monsters, “I’m watching you. All-ways watching.” In the TV series “Person of Interest,” which ran for five seasons, each episode opened with the haunting words, “You are being watched.” Numerous other TV shows feature characters undergoing close scrutiny. 

Increasingly, it’s the same in everyday life. Security cameras are stationed everywhere, from gas station pumps to quick-stop shop aisles to department stores. Surveillance equipment has become standard in airports, railway stations, office buildings, hotels, city streets, sports arenas and stadiums, sometimes even churces.
Like the petulant Roz, it seems someone’s watching us at all times.

Allen Funt’s TV show of years past, “Candid Camera,” has arrived at a town near you. “Big Brother” of George Orwell’s dystopian novel, 1984, who monitored everyone’s every move, has apparently become reality!

However, long before the invention of the camera and its peering eye, humankind was being watched. From the very beginning, God has kept a close eye on His creation. Sometimes we wish He wouldn’t.

We see an example as early as the third chapter of the book of Genesis, after Adam and Eve disobeyed God and ate fruit from the one tree they were forbidden to touch. When they heard God “walking in the garden in the cool of the day” (Genesis 3:8), they hid from Him, fully aware they had messed up. Then in the fourth chapter, after Cain had murdered his brother Abel in a fit of jealous anger, God – already knowing the answer – asked the perpetrator, “Where is your brother Abel?” to which Cain replied, “I don’t know. Am I my brother’s keeper?” (Genesis 4:9).

Quickly the first people discovered they wouldn’t be able to slip their wrongdoing past God’s watchful eyes. But the fact He’s always watching isn’t necessarily a bad thing. We see this after Sarai (later renamed Sarah), frustrated at being unable to have a child, persuaded her husband Abram (later renamed Abraham) to sleep with her maidservant Hagar to produce offspring via another means.

After Hagar became pregnant, however, serious conflict developed between her and Sarai, ultimately resulting in her flight from Abram’s household. The ever-watchful God was fully aware of this situation. He addressed Hagar, instructing her to return to her mistress and giving her the promise, “I will so increase your descendants that they will be too numerous to count” (Genesis 16:1-13).

In response, she called God “El Roi,” which in Hebrew means “the God who sees me,” and obediently returned, giving birth to a son named Ishmael. Even though the Lord had promised Abraham he would become “the father of many nations” through another son, Isaac, He graciously looked out for Hagar and her son.

Repeatedly the Scriptures speak of God watching over us, not to catch us doing something wrong, but rather, eager to find us doing right. “God looks down from heaven on all mankind to see if there are any who understand, any who seek God” (Psalm 53:2).

Psalm 34:15 assures us, “The eyes of the LORD are on the righteous, and his ears are attentive to their cry.” Similarly, Proverbs 15:3 declares, “The eyes of the LORD are everywhere, keeping watch on the wicked and the good.” And 2 Chronicles 16:9 states, “For the eyes of the LORD range throughout the earth to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to him.”

Jesus also spoke of the benefits of serving and worshiping an ever-watchful God, even as we pray: “And when you are praying, do not use meaningless repetition as the Gentiles do, for they suppose that they will be heard for their many words. So do not be like them; for your Father knows what you need before you ask Him.”

God isn’t peering down from the heavenly realm, celestial sledgehammer poised to slam anyone who strays. Rather, He acts like a loving, watchful parent, as the apostle Paul described: “For you know that we dealt with each of you as a father deals with his own children, encouraging, comforting and urging you to live lives worthy of God, who calls you into his kingdom and glory” (1 Thessalonians 2:11-12). 

Much of the watching that’s taking place around us is intended to observe and apprehend evildoers. Unlike security and surveillance devices, or ominous “Roz,” God is also watching – but for our good.

----

Robert J. Tamasy is a veteran journalist, former newspaper editor and magazine editor. Bob has written hundreds of magazine articles, and authored, co-authored and edited more than 15 books. These include the newly re-published, “Business At Its Best,” “Tufting Legacies,” “The Heart of Mentoring,” 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 writes two blogs, www.bobtamasy.blogspot.com, and www.bobtamasy.wordpress.com. He can be emailed at btamasy@comcast.net.


Bob Tamasy: Never Make Light Of The Importance Of Being Light

In my last post, I wrote about the indispensable, universal importance of salt for everyday life. We should consider light as well, very different from salt but also vital to life in all its forms – and similarly endowed with unique properties.  Among these are calorific (producing heat), actinic (serving as a catalyst for chemical reactions), and luminiferous (transmitting ... (click for more)

"I Like The Best" Is Topic Sunday At Middle Valley COG

Middle Valley Church of God announces that Pastor Mitch McClure will speak on the topic, "I Like The Best," in the 10:30 a.m. service on Sunday.  This is part of a sermon series titled, "We Have To Find A Way To Fix This Problem."  This  sermon series will focus on the need for redemption of humanity because of sin and how God's plan is revealed to all of us, officials ... (click for more)

Erlanger Expects $5 Million Profit Despite "Very Challenging" Budget

Erlanger Health System officials said they expect a $5 million profit for the upcoming fiscal year despite a "very challenging" budget. Britt Tabor, chief financial officer, said there will be continued top line growth, which has brought a 51 percent rise in patient revenue over the past five years. "This is organic growth. It's not from mergers or acquisitions," Mr. Tabor ... (click for more)

Public Defender Says Another Entity Needs To Continue Funding For New Mental Health Court

Public Defender Steve Smith said another entity needs to take over funding the new Mental Health Court. He said Criminal Court Judge Don Poole has agreed to oversee the court and will make a budget presentation to the County Commission on May 31. Mr. Smith told members of the Pachyderm Club on Monday that he has been funding the program through the services of Anna Protano ... (click for more)

Tennessee Business Expansions On Rise Across State

In 2016, Tennessee was named State of the Year for Economic Development by Southern Business & Development Magazine based on project totals and the variety of industries that invested in the state and created jobs. To a great extent, Bradley and Polk Counties have benefited from that investment.   From February 2015 to February 2016, Cleveland/Bradley County led the ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: DeVos Changes Everything

I believe that from every point on my moral compass the state’s hijacking of five public schools in Hamilton County is wrong. I also believe I can argue with success from any direction on my compass against any of the proposals or terms that Commissioner Candice McQueen just threatened to impose on the county’s Department of Education. But today let’s go to ‘True North’ on my compass ... (click for more)