By Robert J. Tamasy

When I responded to God’s call for me to become editor and director of publications for CBMC nearly 40 years ago, I literally didn’t know what I didn’t know. 

I didn’t know that I would continue my work with CBMC and CBMC International for the next 20 years. Or that my involvement with the ministry would continue long after that. I didn’t know what a truly life-changing experience it would be for me, my career, and my family. And I didn’t know how many incredible, godly men and women I would meet – or the countless, wonderful things God would teach me through them. 

Joining the ministry, I didn’t arrive with a CBMC pedigree. Until I applied for the job, responding to an ad in a trade journal, I had never heard of CBMC. I could barely spell it. I only knew was Christian Business Men’s Committee (as it was known then) was a ministry to business and professional men. What they did – and how they did it – I was yet to learn. 

Admittedly, I started with grandiose ideas of what I would be doing for God. What I didn’t know was what He would be doing in me. In CBMC, I discovered not only a vision, strategy and methodology, but also a devoted, inspiring army of individuals and teams united by a common mission – to reach men in the marketplace for Christ, and to disciple new believers toward maturity so they could become effective, fruitful servants of the Lord where they worked and lived. 

What have I learned? If given the opportunity, what preview would I give my younger self about what lie ahead in my vocational and spiritual adventure called CBMC? My answers could fill several books – in fact, over the years I have literally written and edited books that include my “lessons.” 

Someone suggested I write some of them down because they might benefit others, so I’m putting together several posts to share with you what I didn’t know – but know now. Let’s get started: 

Keep the Main Thing the Main Thing. Ted DeMoss was President of CBMC when I came on board in 1981. He was one of the great one-on-one evangelists of his time, and perhaps ever. He was a popular speaker for CBMC and, when time permitted, other ministries. He had a unique way of inserting different stories into each talk, but Ted’s message was always the same – the saving, transforming power of Jesus Christ to forgive sins and turn people into new creations. 

Despite forces pressuring Christian leaders to embrace a variety of issues, just as it is today, Ted insisted on staying the course. “Keeping the main thing the main thing,” as he often put it. Once a person has a genuine encounter with Jesus Christ, everything changes – so that was always his singular mission. As he described it, “one beggar telling another beggar where to find bread.” 

Another Ted that I greatly admired, Ted Sprague, shared a similar perspective, seeking to make Jesus a central part of everything. He often quoted Acts 17:28, “For in Him we live and move and have our being,” and Ted lived that out professionally and personally, as well as his very fruitful ministry through CBMC. 

Whether as a community leader, family man or speaker at CBMC events, it was clear that Christ was the center of who Ted was and the source of his identity. 

God is Good All the Time – All the Time God is Good. Going through life, especially times of testing and great adversity, we’re tempted to question where God is. We might wonder, “Why is this happening? Does God even care?” One man in particular helped me to answer these questions. 

Albert Diepeveen was born and grew up in The Netherlands, experiencing firsthand the horrors of World War II. He saw buildings in his city bombed, and survived with his family in great deprivation. As a consequence, during his pre-teen years he contracted tuberculosis, the first of a series of lifelong ailments he would have to deal with. 

After he and his wife immigrated to the United States and became citizens, Albert built a successful career in business, but he still endured times of tremendous struggle. Rather than causing despair, those challenges served to strengthen his faith in Jesus Christ. He became one of the most inspirational and generous people I ever met. 

Through CBMC, Albert served in a variety of leadership roles and channeled his passion for Christ by sharing his faith whenever and wherever he could. He did so not only in the U.S., but also in his native Holland, other European cities, and other parts of the world. 

Reflecting on the adversities he experienced during his life, Albert wrote a booklet called, “Saying ‘Thank You’ Even When You Don’t Feel Thankful.” He was drawing from 1 Thessalonians 5:18 which says, “give thanks in all circumstances.” When asked about his health issues and hardships, he would always shrug them off, acknowledging, “God is good all the time – all the time God is good.” That was an important lesson for me to learn and remember as I have confronted my own challenges. 

In the coming weeks, I’ll share some of the other important lessons I learned through CBMC about this incredible journey we call the “Christian life.” But first, here are a couple of questions to consider: 

1)    How, in the midst of all the pressures and demands we face every day – at work, at home, in our communities – can we “keep the main thing the main thing”? 

2)    What does it mean to trust God, even during times of pain and great adversity? How can we remain thankful, no matter what, believing and showing that God is good all the time – all the time God is good?

About Robert:

Robert J. Tamasy served on the staff of CBMC and CBMC International for a total of 20 years. He has written, co-authored and edited more than 20 books, including “Marketplace Ambassadors: CBMC’s Continuing Legacy of Evangelism and Disciplemaking.” He has agreed to write a series of posts for the CBMC-Kansas City blog, recounting some of the spiritual lessons he has learned over nearly 40 years of marketplace ministry, along with some of the godly men he met through CBMC. He continues to write and edit “Monday Manna” for CBMC International, and also writes a twice-weekly blog, “Just Thinking,” at