Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Prayer Request 11/20 - 11/26

The outgoing political leader in China has acknowledged the rampant corruption inside the ranks of the Communist Party which will wreak havoc for those continuing in control of the party. The new generation of leaders will need to work hard to solve this problem. As believers we are called to pray for political leaders and those who rule over us. Let us pray that under the new leadership churches in China will continue to grow and the issue of church registration will become more favorable and clear.
Xi Jinping's father was a revolutionary hero who fought along with Mao Zedong. Although he was deposed in 1960, he was later vindicated and ascended to the top level of party leadership. Mr. Xi is one of the so-called "princelings" who are now in senior positions in the military and in politics. The power and wealth of the "princelings" in China are enormous due to their family background, education, and connections. Let us pray for many young believers who feel discouraged and sad because they feel they do not have any advantages in life or lack the connections to get a job.
The new leader in China is considered to be very personable and charismatic. He enjoys soccer and Hollywood big-budget films. He is known for his physique, his deep voice, a trophy wife who is a famous folk singer but has held a very low profile in public. Church leaders in China must present a "spiritual appearance" and are usually not considered to be personable or approachable. Let us pray for all the leaders and their families that they will have the ability to connect with their flocks as their friends as well as their shepherds.
The new leader of China is no stranger to the cruelty of the power struggle of the Communist Party. During the Cultural Revolution of 1966-76. Mr.Xi was sent to Shaanxi for seven years where he lived in caves, dug trenches,and cleared pig manure from their pens as part of the nationwide re-education of youth. Those in that generation who experienced the horrific Cultural Revolution invariably have psychological scars. They are also in church leadership now. We pray they will be more trusting, less defensive to criticism, and more open to suggestions because of God's love.
In 1982 Xi Jinping made a strategic decision and he requested to go back to the place he had served at the grassroots level as vice mayor in Hebei and later in Xiamen City. He developed good sense to business issues and his political skills were honed in the process of dealing with Taiwan. A well-rounded leader needs to have some experience at the grass root level. Let us pray for courage and good interpersonal skills for all the new pastors. Most have never received any mentoring or supervision so sadly they have learned only through making mistakes themselves.
It is totally unrealistic to expect large-scale changes overnight in any new political leadership. There is no way one single leader can change China immediately. If he somehow jeopardizes the collective interest of the other faction, his fate is dimmed as previous failed leaders have shown. Churches in China also change slowly but we need to pray that aged pastors will be willing to give younger ones room to practice and grow. We also ask the Lord for patience and humility for the younger leaders.
Beijing has always seen Fujian as the military front and future battleground and this has resulted in this area lagging behind other coastal provinces economically. Fujian Province is only eighty-five miles from Taiwan and in the past the majority of construction there has been for military purposes rather than for roads and ports. Churches in Fujian have flourished because of its long Christian history and connection with Southeast Asia's Chinese communities. We lift up all the believers there as well as the increasing number of training centers and efforts by churches to reach out to their communities.



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