Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Prayer Request 4/23 - 4/29

A powerful earthquake jolted China's Sichuan province near the same area where a devastating quake struck five years ago. Casualty toll could climb. This is also the home to China's famous pandas. Let us pray for rescue efforts not only for the residents but also for the tourists in the affected area. Chinese Christians responded to the disaster relief last time and became a powerful testimony of the love of Jesus to the nation. We pray that churches will do the same again.
Years ago, the whole of China applauded 9/11 as a punishment to the United States. After the Boston bombing, far from inflaming the deep antipathy that many Chinese feel for U.S. foreign policy, there was a widespread outpouring of empathy instead. Chinese believers share the tendency of judging others very quickly and relentlessly. Let us pray the Lord will convict us all of our pride and self-righteousness, and fill us with humility and thanksgiving for His mercy and grace.
In the past, Chinese people who studied abroad and then returned to China were regarded as very lucky. They were called "the returnees" and were guaranteed the best jobs with bright prospects of getting rich. We praise God because many of them came to know Jesus while they were abroad. It is estimated that ten percent of these "returnees" became Christians. We want to pray that they will continue to walk with Jesus and also for the many churches they have started.
Times have changed and now many Chinese students who have studied abroad go home with no prospect of a job at all. They are euphemistically called "the seaweeds"--washed ashore on the beach and useless. Let us pray for those who have returned to China but are unable to find a good job, especially those who have accepted Christ while they were abroad. May they always trust the Lord and find strength and comfort from above.
Returnees with their foreign education are not so well accepted now in China as they used to be since those who have graduated in their motherland have a better grasp of English than before and they command smaller salaries. The returnees are known for their cantankerous attitudes and they do not fit well in the Chinese corporate culture. Let us pray specifically for those Christian graduates who have returned to China and are seeking for jobs. We know they have an adjustment to make and we pray for their spiritual adjustment, too, that they will find a church where they can fit in and have fellowship in Christ.
Employers in China are not very warm to new returning graduates. Bosses in China want obedient employees who do not challenge their ideas and do not demand high salaries. We want to pray for powerful testimonies and cultural sensitivity for the Christians who reach out to share Jesus with students from China. May the love of Christ shine through their lives and draw their Chinese friends to the Lord.
Scholars have observed that as China's standard of living improves but the disparity between the rich and the poor widens, people are more open to religion and there is a greater demand for satisfaction of spiritual needs. We know affluence tends to make lukewarm Christians and we have observed the decline in church attendance that comes with it. We pray for revival of all of the churches in China--those that have a burden for others who are marginalized by society and the impoverished rural churches.


No comments: