Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Prayer Request 7/13 - 7/19

Why are Chinese not given the Nobel Prize in Literature? An expert said, "Modern Chinese authors not considered for the Nobel Laureate have some geopolitical reasons, most importantly there is the issue of translation, which presents an obstacle in linguistics and communication." There are few contemporary Chinese Christian authors known outside of China. We pray for the day that insights shared by Chinese theologians and authors will be appreciated by more believers n China and abroad as well as more people who can articulate God's truth and make the Scripture relevant in a Chinese cultural context.

During the Cultural Revolution from 1960-1970, these slogans were popular: "If you do not read Chairman Mao's writings for one day, you will have problems. If you do not read for two days, you will begin going downhill and for three days, you will die." "Submit to Chairman Mao and follow him blindly, believe in Chairman Mao to the point of being suuperstitious." Many people observe that the church grows during periods of persecution but becomes stagnant when prosperity prevails. We sincerely pray that the fire of revival comes again for all believers in China. May the Spirit of the Lord test our hearts and refine us to serve Him with utmost devotion as we treasure His word every day.

Recently there have been several high-profile enterprises trying to eradicate prostitiution as well as sweeping efforrts to get rid of organized crime. A Chinese poem states, "The grass cannot be burned out by a prarie fire but grows again with the spring breeze." Many are cynical about whether all the recent police efforts will be effective because they are tired to corruption in high places. Can an average Chinese believer or even a church do anything about social ills? Let us pray that the Lord will guard the hearts and minds of all believers as they walk by businesses and stores that openly feature and promote sexual temptation.

Parents who send their daughters abroad to study often worry about marriage issues. One such mother said, "She cannot marry a foreigner because there is too big a cultural difference. She cannot marry those rich (playboy) fellow students because they are not reliable. She must look for only those who had a scholarship or a fine local Chinese boy." We pray in particular for Christian parents who have daughters. We know it is very important that they date Christians but we also know that as parents we can only remind them of this. May the Lord help us to do what we should do and pray earnestly for the future mates of our children accepting their choices and never give up praying for them.

Some of the cults ravaging the churches in China resort to dirty tricks such as threatening leaders with physical harm, kidnapping, sexual temptation, and coming in as wolves in sheep's clothing to physically hijack the entire church body(members). Every week churches are destroyed by cults and the group that is left is feeble and unable to function. Let us pray for those churches that are under attack, specifically for their safety and wisdom. We pray too, for those who are trying to regroup their ministry after the loss of their shepherd.

There is a growing trend among the house churches to attack each other, solely on the basis of one's theology. Recently, the intensity of such attacks have escalated. What is merely difference in denominational beliefs outside of China are now causing Chinese believers to calling each other "heretic". It is sad to quickly label anyone who hold a slightly different Biblical interpretation as false teachers. May the Lord grant us humility and genuine acceptance. We pray that believers will not attack one another as enemies because they hold slightly different view in Biblical interpretation, but they can encourage us because they love the Lord.

The practice of borrowing money from friends, relatives, or neighbors is very common in China. Culturally, one is obligated to help the person in need but often unpaid or long-running debts strain relationships. Sometimes it is very difficult to decide whether the church as a body should or should not financially help a brother or sister in need. Often when the church does not help, people get hurt. Let us pray for wisdom and discernment when money for believers is involved in the churches.








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