Tuesday, February 15, 2005

Prayer Request 2/15-2/21


Since giving “Red Envelope” with New Year’s money in them is a part of the holiday tradition in China, all of the kids are richer this week. It is common for children to pocket the amount of their parents’ salary for a month or two from relatives. A new tradition this year is “Bai Nien” or wishing a Happy New Year by text messaging via cell phones. The Spring Festival or Lunar New Year, January 1-15 is the time people relax, travel, and spend money. Let us remember many the training courses for church workers taking place during this time as well as all the poor believers who live joyfully not because they have much but because they have all in Jesus.

There are 100 million “Left Behind Children”, whose parents left them with relatives to work in the cities. They make up nearly half of school, in some rural regions. Half of these children have serious academic problems and primed to sexual abuses. In the rural churches, grandparents could not share their faith effectively with their “Stay at home” grandkids and failure of church to provide any significant ministry to them. Let us pray for breakthrough and mercy of God in bring awareness of this epic problem

Many young ladies ask the question, “How old is too old to get married?” For many single girls the pressure to get married increases after they are twenty-five years old. For professional women it is a big problem since they would have to “lower the standard” and consider marrying laborers or farmers. In Chinese churches women continue to be in the majority. To those who have dedicated their lives to serving the Lord, this usually means celibacy. Women who refuse to marry unbelievers face tremendous pressure from their families. Let us remember them in our prayer

The first legal case alleging employer bias for someone with Hepatitis B has opened in Anhui. China has 120 million Hepatitis B carriers and thirty million have chronic hepatitis. Guangzhou tops the nation with ten million carriers. Contracting hepatitis is very common in China and so far there really is no cure. Let us pray especially for the health of visiting church workers and the countless believers who have meager resources for treating or preventing hepatitis

Entire villages become beggars, on the streets in cities. The phenomenon is quite common and the income from begging often exceeds 50 yuan a day. Many cities now impose “No Begging Zones” to keep out these “undesirable” people. We do not question that these beggars are truly needy but begging has become a part of the Chinese city scene today. Jesus said that we always have the poor among us. Let us pray for the church to play an active role in social causes and community welfare.

The average life expectancy for residents of Beijing has reached 79.87 years which is an increase of .25 years. In many communities the elderly gather for recreational activities and even classes. Once banned, ballroom dancing in the park and community square now attract many older couples and even younger onlookers. Among retirees, many are the Old Party Faithful and still find Christianity foreign but their hearts are softening and becoming more receptive as they get older. Let us pray for churches to build a ministry to them and for people to reach out to the hundreds of millions of aging people.

Reading has become a problem in China. Only half of all of the people read which is a drop of nearly ten percent from 1998. People say they “don’t have time” to read and only five percent of the people claim to have the habit of reading books. A large number of people in the house churches are functionally illiterate. They have Bibles but cannot read them so they learn mostly through listening to preaching. Many churches have Bible reading before the Sunday service. Let us pray for the mighty work of the Holy Spirit in this huge population of believers.

過 年給紅包,一直是中國人過年習俗。隨著經濟成長,壓歲錢也隨之“水漲船高”,孩子們收得盆滿鉢滿,個個成了“小暴發戶”。80年代串門拜年,90年代電話 拜年,藉二十一世紀科技進步之便,發電子短信已成最流行的拜年方式。雖然春節期間是國人一年來難得放鬆步調、調養身心的時刻,但各地仍有許多同工訓練課程 進行中,讓我們為培訓的開花結果守望,也為同工們時時享有神豐富的祝福祈求.

有1 億多農民到城市打工把子女留在家鄉,託家人或親戚照看。由於長期不和父母一起生活,這些 “留守兒童”身心發育受到影響,很多孩子的學業成績都在中下,虐待兒童的情況亦常有聽聞.在農村的祖父母或親戚在撫養“留守兒童”時也多遇到相當程度的困 難。一般教會鮮有提供相對的事工來幫助信徒,信仰便難以傳至下一代,我們禱告神的憐憫與恩典,興起弟兄姊妹來回應這個嚴重的問題.

女 人到底幾歲結婚才不會太老?年過25之後,單身女孩便開始拉警報.更有些專注工作的上班女性,眼看年齡越來越大,就降低要求,連民工也開始願意考慮,好像 非得嫁出去不可。教會中姊妹數量遠超過弟兄的人數,她們在尋求能在靈裡合一的屬天伴侶時,往往有實際上的矛盾與掙扎,尤其是來自不信父母的壓力,讓我們在 禱告中記念已達適婚年齡的姊妹。

安 徽人民法院對全國首例因“乙(B)肝歧視”引發的憲法平等權案正式立案,此案關乎廣大乙肝患者及帶原者利益,自然引起了社會高度關注。乙肝在中國是非常普 遍,目前除注意衛生之外,缺乏實際有效的防治方式.讓我們禱告同工出入平安及身心健康,並懇切為信徒中的乙肝患者及帶原者禱告.

蘭 州岷縣小寨鄉今年先後遇到了洪水、地震,於是有人開始外出行乞。今年7月份小寨鄉外出乞討人員高達400人,其中不乏家境較好者。許多城市現在開始設置禁 止行乞告示牌來扼制乞討行為。我們暫不探討行乞者的真假,但行乞的現象在中國大陸各城市中已越來越普遍。讓我們為教會能實際並有效的在鄰里間關懷照顧貧窮 者來禱告,求神感動眾肢體在社會中作光和鹽.

北 京人的平均期望壽命達到79.87歲,比上年增0.25歲。平均期望壽命是指人如果沒有意外,應該活到此年齡。許多中國退休的老人還有具老黨員身份的人, 往往視基督教為外來的宗教而予以排斥,近年來許多長輩看到神在自己子女身上的作為,這現象已有改善。退休老人常在社區的公園或廣場社交,讓我們禱告神興起 事工來對這群退休老人傳福音.

“全 國國民閱讀與購買傾向抽樣調查”發現,國民的讀書率持續走低,以識字者總體樣本計算,比1998年下降了8.7個百分點,圖書閱讀率爲51.7%,其中城 鎮居民爲69.6%,農村居民爲45.3%,均比1998年有所下降。造成此現象的主因是“沒有時間”。農村教會的信徒一般識字率不高,雖擁有聖經,但大 部分還是靠別人口傳的來提升靈命。許多教會在主日崇拜前仍保有讀聖經的程序,對弟兄姊妹幫助很大.讓我們求神用自己的話語、聖靈親自建造這群弟兄姊妹。

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