Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Prayer Request 5/12 - 5/18

TuesdayChina used to have thirty-two safe harbors to receive abandoned ​babies but many cities, including Guangzhou, Jinan, and Xiamen have shut them down because they were overwhelmed by the sheer number of babies that they were receiving. ​Christians are supposed to show their love by caring for the orphans and widows rather than by debating theological issues as Chinese Christians like to do. We pray that we will love with deeds and actions rather than just words.
The vast majority of abandoned babies​ in China have severe disabilities or some kind of illness. When parents face the prospect of the enormous cost of caring for them, they give up the babies since there is no welfare system or assistance available for them. In China Christians are not known for their charitable deeds. We pray that more believers will show the love of Jesus in their neighborhoods and be visible to the public so Christianity will not be marginalized.
​Some Christians are involved in the adoption of and ​caring for abandoned babies in China. They pour out the love of Jesus Christ on them and adopt one or more babies. Some even have formal orphanages to care for them. We praise God for the wonderful examples these believers set for us. May the Lord richly reward them and supply their needs financially and with helpers.
Some Christians raise funds to adopt abandoned children or do so with their own meager income. Their work is very difficult but they believe we should love every life because each one is created in God’s image. Chinese believers know that we should love our neighbors but they often are unwilling to get involved. We pray that churches will not discount the importance of a ​social caring ministry, but be compassionate like the Good Samaritan.
Although more than half of the people in Taiwan support same-sex marriages according to recent polls, the city of Taipei has the reputation of being the most friendly to gays of any city in Asia. Gays can serve openly in the Taiwanese military and textbooks in schools must be tolerant to gays. We pray that churches will be unified in their Biblical position but still known as loving and non-judgmental.
Officially, the government of China adopts a non-interfering stand toward homosexuality but offers no legal protection. Beijing, however, has a low tolerance for those who have AIDS or for groups that advocate same-sex marriages. Unlike the vast majority of churches in China, many churches in Taiwan are known for their political activism. We pray for wisdom that churches will know how to present their opposition without coming across as old-fashioned and full of bigotry.
The gospel reached China more than two centuries ago and there have been rumors that China would be a major country to send missionaries to other places. Some even talked of the churches in China sending enough missionaries out to surpass the nations in the West. We pray for humility in everything we do as we imitate those who are imitating Christ before us. May the Lord convict us of our tendency to be arrogant and bragging.

目前全中國共有三十二個棄嬰島試點,廣州、濟南、廈門等地的棄嬰島因為接收嬰兒的數量過多,對福利院的財力和人力都帶來巨大的挑戰, 多已經關閉或暫停。關心孤兒寡婦,是在神面前信仰虔誠的具體表現和真實見證。弟兄姊妹們熱愛神的話語,喜歡從知識的角度來追求信仰,求主幫助我們不是單單愛主的話,更是以行動來活出信仰。
有不少中國基督徒對棄嬰收養非常關注,甚至親力親為。他們憑著基督的愛,收養一個或更多棄嬰,也有一些人​​想辦法建立正規的收養機構。我們為這些基督徒感恩,求主加添他們力量和資源,來幫助更多的孩子, 更能成為弟兄姊妹愛神愛人好的學習榜樣。
有些基督徒​以自己微薄的收入來領養棄嬰,他們籌集資金、照料孩子的辛苦實難形容。但他們相信每一個生命皆有神形象, 都是我們應該愛的對象。弟兄姊妹雖然知道聖經教導我們要愛鄰舍,但是多半看輕社區關懷的工作,求主憐憫我們,多有好撒瑪利亞人的愛心。
中國政府對於愛滋團體與爭取同性戀權的容忍度較低, 但對同性戀者相關活動多採取”沒看見”的態度, 基本上也沒有相關的法令來保障他們的權益。台灣不少教會在同性戀等社會議題上採積極的參與, 這跟絕大多數中國教會的景況不同。我們為教會有智慧來面對新時代的各樣挑戰求智慧,尤其是教會如何守住聖經的立場卻不被社會大眾誤解為過時及偏執。

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