Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Prayer Request 3/31 - 4/6

TuesdayChina is in the midst of a religious revival, and people will pay to visit holy sites. So the local government has​ set out to rebuild both Buddhist and Taoist temples, which were wrecked by Red Guards during the Cultural Revolution, using these temples to attract tourists. Christians in China consider Taoists very resistant to Jesus and often give up trying to share the gospel with them. May the Lord give us a burning passion to share Jesus Christ and spread the seed of the gospel at every opportunity.​
The revival of traditional Chinese religions in China​ is partly due to ​a​ resurgence of faith and partly due to commercial interests. Local officials consider​ the​ rebuilding of temples as a way to boost their tourism income. ​We pray for all of the Buddhist and Taoist people who live near churches in China. May the Lord soften their hearts because of the love, caring lives, and good deeds of the Christians they see every day and may they have friendly relationships.
Although scholars once distinguished between “philosophical Taoism” and “religious Taoism,” today most see the two strains as closely related. ​Taoist philosophy deeply influenced Chinese culture and their worldview. May the Lord give believers wisdom so they can discern and apply Biblical truths lest we become ignorant and consider traditional culture more important than our Christian faith.​
Taoist worshipers will often go to a service on important holy days or they might even go to a temple or hire a priest to come to their home to get help for a specific problem they face, such as illness, death, or even school exams or business meetings.​ We pray for wisdom for Christians as they share the gospel with Taoists that they will be able to clearly explain salvation through Jesus and especially what the Bible teaches about honoring our parents and worshipping ancestors.
Usually the Taoist supplicants will pray to a deity, and the priest or nun will stage ceremonies to summon the god’s assistance. Many Taoists also engage in physical cultivation aimed at wellness and contemplation, like qigong breathing exercises or tai chi shadow boxing. Christianity is seen as a foreign religion in China, people turn to Taoism because it is a Chinese religion. We pray for salvation for our relatives and friends who are resistant and hostile to Jesus Christ, may they turn to His salvation very soon.
​As China's only indigenous religion, Taoism's influence is found in everything from calligraphy and​ politics to medicine and poetry. Many Christians cannot distinguish between culture and Taoist beliefs. We pray for wisdom for believers not to engage in feng-shui, divination, and fortune telling.
After three decades of prosperity and the first significant period of relative stability in more than a century, the people​ in China are in the midst of a great awakening of religious beliefs.We praise God for the fantastic growth in the churches and pray the Lord will continue to give us numbers of saved people. We pray, too, that Christians will not lose their love for God in this time of prosperity.


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