China churches have caught “mission fever” and sent out some missionaries to foreign countries. This is a beginning phase because there is much more for their sending churches and the new missionaries will learn. We praise God as more churches earnestly sending out missionaries. Many leaders speak of a grand vision for China as the largest missionary-sending country. We pray for all leaders and missionaries recruited and trained to have the humility and true compassion of Jesus.
The first wave of China missionaries is mostly from village churches. Nervous, they find it challenging to cope and fit in with cultural differences. Often, they stay in their dorms, preferring to be with their own group and not to go out unless it is necessary. We pray for all young missionaries to trust the Lord’s grace when they face cultural shock. May the Lord provide supervisors who will inspire and help them quickly adapt to all cultural differences.
Marital issues can be damaging for China’s missionaries, especially for those from villages who married early. It is easy for couples to give up because they lack counseling that prepares them for living abroad. Relationships and spiritual burn out when they are unable to cope with a vast cultural gap and the stress of ministry. May the Lord have mercy on all who serve as a couple, or family, in churches and abroad. We pray for the unity of hearts and minds, so they will not fall into the snares of the evil one. May the Lord bless them with effective mentors and counselors to help them wherever they serve.
Missionary couples fight over parenting issues, especially the education of their children. Some cannot resolve their problems, even with intensive counseling, are sent home and may end up divorcing. Rural pastors in China also face similar parenting issues, because few education options exist for children where they serve. We pray that churches can respectively help with these issues, either financially or by providing suitable alternatives. May the Lord richly strengthen the faith of all rural pastors and missionaries in China and bless their children.
Wives of pastors and missionaries naturally worry the most about their children’s education. If a good education is not provided for the families, negative emotions will surface, as well as, complaints toward their husbands and the sending churches. Many rural pastors and missionaries give up serving once their children enter school age, partly because Chinese parents stress the education of their children. We pray that their churches and mission agencies can provide good resources and options to retain more workers for God’s Kingdom.
Missionaries sent from China usually admit they lack the gift of language because they struggle and fear to learn and practice a new language. Many want to give up because they are unable to master basic conversation. We pray for the gift of tongues for Chinese missionaries. May the Lord give them the determination to learn like Western and Korean missionaries, who do not give up until they master the language.
Missionaries sent out from China reflect their culture and ethnic mindset. They are cordial, but not humble. Self-centered, they do not work well as a team and are unable to express their firm conviction. But worse, missionaries from China guard a strong sense of ethnic superiority. We all need to be molded by the Holy Spirit, so we can present Jesus Christ appropriately by our words and our actions. May the Lord give us the transformation needed to be His good and faithful servant.