“‘For I know the plans I have for you,’ declares the Lord” (Jer. 29:11).
I retired from the World Bank in 2016 after working there for more than 28 years. I still do temporary assignments there sometimes.
One day in late June 2019, I had a phone call from a previous work colleague. Her unit was in dire need of my services, she said. I responded that I would seek God’s guidance and wait upon Him to direct my path. She and her manager were insistent: they needed me “at any cost!” I repeated my statement about waiting on the Lord.
I spent Friday and Sabbath, June 28 and 29, praying for God’s direction with the many options I had. After Sabbath I turned on my computer to find an e-mail with an attached 150-day consultant contract: I had been appointed without any negotiation or verbal agreement. God was clearly ahead of me on this.
Once I was introduced at staff meeting, the manager informed me that more important than all the tasks outlined in my terms of reference, employees could always reach out to me for prayer when they felt the need. That was my affirmation that God had placed me there for His purpose. Praying with staff became almost a daily matter.
One day my manager texted me: “Please pray. . . . I am at a board meeting, and things are just not going well for me and our unit.” I invited a couple colleagues to go over to her office to pray right away. We felt we were on holy ground: we literally took off our shoes and fell on our knees with our faces to the floor, pleading for God’s help to turn things around in favor of our manager and unit in this dire situation. I concluded by asking God to “give us a rainbow of promise” as an affirmation that He had heard and answered according to His will.
As I was putting on my shoes a colleague said, “Look, look. . . . You asked God for a ‘rainbow of promise,’ and there are hundreds of rainbows in this room.” My faithful God was showing His awesome presence in the appearance of rainbows—on the walls, ceiling, and side table; under the table; on and under the manager’s desk.
I said, “But Lord, can You please put a rainbow of promise upon my manager?” At that moment “rainbows” of different sizes appeared on my manager’s white jacket hanging behind the door. Walking toward my office, rainbows regaled corridor walls, the floor, and the ceiling.
My prayer partners said, “You asked for a rainbow, but God gave us so many!”
Back from the meeting, my manager informed us that something happened suddenly at the meeting: the board of directors changed their approach and ended up favoring our manager and our unit in a major way. I shared our experience of praying in her office and showed her a few of the pictures we captured of the presence and faithfulness of our God, including the assurance of His “rainbows of promise.”
Loretta Matthews is a prayer warrior at the World Bank.