China's prime minister did something unusual. On TV, he used megaphone to apologize for the disruption caused by the worst winter storm Southern China endured during the Chinese New Year. In response to such acts of humility, many Chinese have accepted this disaster as an "act of God" rather than a foul-up by the government. Chinese church leaders are less likely to admit mistakes or even apologize. Let us pray for genuine hearts for all who shepherd or serve in church.
Drinking milk was once a luxury not usually associated with the Chinese diet. Today the rising standard of living has whet the appetites of Chinese people to drink milk and eat other dairy products. In 2006 an average Chinese consumed six gallons of milk (one-fifth that of people in the USA). Many will admit that a vast number of Chinese Christians would be considered "milk-drinkers" and unable to "eat solid food". We pray earnestly for a great emphasis on spiritual feeding in the churches rather than merely seeking a blessing from God ormiracles and signs.
The rising cost of living is the top concern for Chinese in cities and villages alike. In a survey by the Communist Party, the cost of living, disparity of incomes, and corruption are considered the most critical social problems. The rising cost of food and living on a fixed income make many people anxious and less likely to give to the Lord's work. We remember the need of all the church workers aswell as retired believers who live on a fixed income.
It is very common in China to see celebrities endorsing a certain product or some kind of medicine on TV. Although many Chinese associate the endorsement of a celebrity as a seal of approval, recently several such products were found to be fake or containing harmful substances. Chinese churches have complained that many foreign preachers come to China and promote their own church growth methods or "success theology". Let us pray for spiritual discernment among believers and diligence in studying the Word of God.
Chaozhou people are known for their delicacies, opera, strong family ties, hardworking habits, and thriftiness. The richest Chinese (the ninth richest person in the world), Le Ka-shing, is a telecommunications and real estate tycoon from Chaozhou. Many believers look to wealthy Christians to donate to large projects but God uses the offerings of the common believers in His work. We pray all believers will be diligent in their labor and generous giving.
When Chinese couples have a child born with a deformity, usually they will give it away for foster care. The one-child policy allows having a second child under these circumstances and most families do not have the financial resources to care for a handicapped child at home. Let us remember all the handicapped children cared for by Christians or organization supported by overseas mission agencies who believe it is their duty to show the compassion of Jesus and care for the least, the smallest, and weakest of the community.
Chinese churches in North America have been blessed with unprecedented number of conversions and baptisms. Students, visiting scholars, new immigrants from China, and even the visiting parents of students are coming to receive Jesus in great numbers. We praise God for raising up almost 4,000 Chinese churches in North America over the past 30 years. Most of them are small and many of them are without shepherds. Let us pray for more fruit, more workers, and more involvement in China missions.