Tuesday, January 05, 2016

Prayer Request 1/5 - 1/11

The massive and tragic landslide in Shenzhen tells the dark side of the story of migrant workers in China who seek better lives in the cities. Often they become casualties in their pursuit of survival and hope for a brighter future. It is a fact that rural churches there are declining rapidly because of the exodus of young people. We pray for God's mercy for all rural believers that they will not lose faith but will redouble their efforts to teach youth to know and love the Lord from a very young age.
Guangdong Province, including Shenzhen, has for decades drawn its blue collar work force from migrants from villages and small towns in poor areas in China. Many of the victims in China's urban disasters were migrant workers. The large number of migrant workers in Guangdong presents new opportunities for ministry since they are generally poor and poorly-educated people. We pray for those churches that target migrants and their families that the Lord will bless them with much fruit.
Shenzhen has a population of more than eighteen million and more than eighty percent of them are migrants from the countryside who do not have local permanent residence permits. We pray for the physical and psychological needs of hundreds of millions of migrant workers in China as well as their poor relationships with their children since many of them are separated for long periods. May the Lord have mercy on on those who are believers.
Many restless Chinese teenagers from rural areas leave their homes to look for work elsewhere and as a consequence lose touch with their families or see them only rarely, such as during the Lunar New Year holiday. We pray specifically for young people who have grown up in rural churches but no longer practice their faith in the cities. May the Lord have mercy on them, answer their prayers, and bring them back into the fellowship of believers.
Although factory jobs are still easy to find in China, the cost of living has been rising steadily. Many workers are unable to return home even during the holidays because their employers owe them back wages. There have been numerous incidences of migrant workers protesting to demand reasonable and better working conditions. We pray for the improvement of their plight but we also pray that churches will treat God's servants (their pastors) better as well.
Many urban churches in China lack strong Biblical teaching​ so the believers do not know the truth well. These churches emphasize teachings on prayer and meditation and focus only on having a good personal relationship with Jesus. ​We pray for these churches that the Lord will grant them faith with a love, hunger, and thirst for His word so they will know how to discern the truths in the Bible.​
​Urban churches in China are small and loosely organized so believers meet as small groups. Many​ of the believers previously attended the Three-Self churches but they left and began meeting in homes and gradually became independent churches. This kind of church has no spiritual leader and no full-time workers to serve in it so it is in danger of becoming a club for believers. We pray that the emphasis will be on teaching God's word along with the preaching of the gospel, not merely fellowship.

深圳1800多萬人口中80%以上是流動人口,沒有當地的永久居留證,其中包括許多來自農村的人。 我們為上億的民工流徙各地,他們生、心理的需要禱告,尤其要關懷身為基督徒的民工們。他們常年與子女、親人分離所帶來的種種心理和家庭問題,求主加倍施恩慈、憐悯和看顧。
許多外出找工作,不安寂寞的中國農村青少年,往往離家後就與家人失去聯繫。或甚少回家與親人見面,往往只在農曆新年假期才得短暫相聚。 我們特別為在農村教會長大,卻在城市中失落了信仰的年輕人禱告,願主憐憫他們,聆聽他們的祈求,將他們領回主的懷抱,與主內肢體相親,能在教會當中蒙神保守與祝福。
現時城市教會的特點就是規模小且分佈鬆散,信徒聚會以小組為單位。很多人離開三自教會後就開始自己在家中聚會,慢慢的就視自己為一個獨立的教會。這樣的教會通常沒有屬靈的領袖,也沒有全職的工人來主領服事,規畫發展。教會往往變得越來越「俱樂部化」。求主幫助他們追求聖經教導,也看重傳福音,而不是單單享受信徒間的團契生活而已 。

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