In recent weeks, the nation was nervous about the scheduled monetary policy meeting, in which it was rumoured that interest rates might surge two hundred basis points. Such a move would spell financial disaster for many. Of course, we all breathed a big sigh of relief when the announcement was made that the decision was a “mere” fifty basis points. (Conspiracy theorists might conjecture that it was all a cunning psychological ploy!)
As I contemplated this decision in the days following the announcement, I wondered about what factors played into Tito Mboweni’s thinking. He obviously weighed various economic factors and sought counsel from many sources. I am sure that he must have been burdened with the thought of what an increase in interest rates would do to many. Thousands perhaps would lose their houses, and the plight of the poor might be made even worse. But in all of the considerations and counsels, did he pray?
I have no idea if the Governor of the Reserve Bank is a believer, but at such a precipitous juncture of the economy I would think that he would have at least been open to the idea of seeking divine aid!
If Tito did pray, and if he let this be made known to the public, how would people have responded? No doubt, many would have been blessed to hear that this powerful man realised that he was accountable to God, and that he realised his need for God’s guidance. But I am also sure that many would have scoffed at the idea. In fact, many would no doubt have been disgusted. “After all,” some would have argued, “what does prayer have to do with fiscal policy? Prayer is great for Sunday, or when someone is ill, or maybe even if the World Cup is within reach, but one cannot bring God into such an issue as interest rates and the welfare of the economy.” How wrong such a response would be.
In a few weeks, we will begin to study the book of Daniel in Family Bible Hour, and there we will find that men in high positions do pray. They need to pray.
Daniel is a wonderful example of a believer who took Jesus with him into the workplace. He was not ashamed of his relationship with the Lord. He had not compartmentalised his life into the two cupboards of the sacred and the secular. Rather, Daniel understood that God was sovereign over all, including governmental decisions. If he had been the Reserve Bank Governor he would have consulted with God as much as well as with Trevor Manuel.
As you go into the workplace, be encouraged to seek the Lord’s wisdom for decisions being made. We have no reason to be ashamed of letting our light shine in the world at large. Without being spiritually ostentatious, your transparency with your co-workers regarding the comprehensiveness of your relationship with Christ is a means of taking dominion for His glory.
I am not suggesting that you open your weekly sales managers meetings in prayer (though there may be times when that would be appropriate); rather, I am saying that the influence of Christ is to pervade all of your life so that, if you were to do so, no one would be surprised. As you make work-related decisions, commit these to prayer, for we are commanded in Scripture to pray always.
Did Tito pray about his response to the PPI? Will he pray about it in preparation for September’s decision? I have no idea. Closer to home is, will you and I pray about all areas of life? After all, we believe that the resurrection of Jesus Christ proved that He is Lord of all. And that includes interest rates.