Tuesday, October 15, 2019

Prayer Request 10/15 - 10/21

Tuesday
Since August 2018, as the result of African swine fever epidemic, China has culled massive numbers of pigs. The price of pork has shot up to 5 USD per kilo, up a staggering 75.5 percent from the same period last year. Increased food cost and devaluation of Renminbi have made people uneasy financially. We pray that believers will trust the Lord, honor the need of His house , and continue to give faithfully, especially in this time of great pressure.
Wednesday
More than 10 cities in China, such as Nanning, Haikou and Xiamen have imposed abuy restriction on pork. It is the peak season for food consumption during the September Mid-Autumn Festival and the National holiday in October, so the government must stabilize the price of pork and guarantee a supply. Most, if not all of the house churches have changed the way they worship and meet at homes in small groups. Open-churches have encountered many restrictions as well. We pray for His comfort so believers will not lose heart, continue to trust God in difficult times and know He is on the throne.
Thursday
Officials said that at the end of this year, pig production is expected to stabilize. In the second half of next year, pig production will gradually recover, and the price of live pigs will gradually decline.Church offerings have dropped as a result of not being able to meet together and the increase of the cost of living, but some pastors are being paid fully. We pray for all who serve full time in churches that God will provide their needs and they will experience His faithfulness in their ministries.
Friday
In addition to the rise in pork prices, fresh fruit, beef, lamb, and poultry prices have risen by 11 to 24 percent, reflecting the recent increase in Chinese food costs.Many churches are poor and unable to pay their pastors who must work elsewhere to support their families. We pray for those who have received the calling to pastor a church that their church will value their service, and give generously to meet the financial obligations of their pastor, so the shepherd can care for His sheep and serve the church.
Saturday
In China, nearly half of those sixty years and older are “empty-nested” or living alone. A quarter of them reported being lonely and living in poverty. Churches must care for members who are elderly living alone. We praise God for those who have a part in caring for the elderly, knowing 'Whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me.' (Matt. 25:40)
Sunday
The idea of filial piety has gradually disintegrated in China as young people neglect their elderly parents. There are more sensational cases of elderly parents suing their children for financial support and cases of tragedies of old people dying and the bodies not being discovered until days later.We pray that believers will financially support their elderly parents, and always be reminded of Jesus rebuke to the Pharisees of their hypocrisy, “If a man tells his father or his mother, “Whatever you would have gained from me is given to God”’— then you no longer need to support your parents.” (Mk 7:11-12) .
Monday
The government in China has enacted laws to force children to "visit or check on their elderly parents" and urging them to fulfill their financial and emotional obligations. But for the “421” families (a child needs to support two parents and two pairs of grandparents), persuading a grown child to support their elderly parents and grandparents financially and emotionally seemed unrealistic. All Chinese parents expect their children to honor them, but they need to provide an example for their children. Honoring parents needs a model, therefore, we pray that God moves us all to live a blameless life and one of good testimonies.

星期二
去年8月以來,因非洲豬瘟疫情不斷撲殺生豬,供不應求導致豬肉價格不斷上漲,豬肉價格比去年同期上漲百分之75.5。物價上漲,再加上人民幣兌美金貶值,令許多人感到經濟緊張。求主幫助信徒將信心盯住在上帝,願先把神的家放在首位。在事奉和奉獻上有忠心,尤其當前教會正在極大的壓力中。
星期三
部分地區諸如南寧、海口、廈門等十多個城市都推出豬肉「限購令」。中秋、十一連假,消費將進入旺季,盼「限購令」能穩定豬價、保障供應。許多城市的家庭教會都因為宗教環境改變無法繼續聚會,改成在信徒家中以小組崇拜,甚至連公開教會也有許多限制。求主自己安慰眾信徒,不叫他們灰心喪膽,在困難中繼續愛主並學習倚靠的功課,深信神的道路高過人的道路,意念亦高過人的意念。
星期四
官方表示, 今年底生豬產量有望止跌回穩,明年下半年將逐步恢復,屆時價格才會逐步回落。教會無法以過去的方式聚會,加上物價上漲,奉獻必定減少,影響全職工人的薪水分發。我們為全職服事的弟兄姊妹禱告,求主親自的供應,使他們的需用都充足。
星期五
除了豬肉價格上漲,鮮果、牛肉、羊肉、雞肉價格漲幅都由百分之十一至百分之二十四不等,反映近來食材愈來愈貴的現象。一些中國教會無法提供全職工人的生活費。傳道人只好(也必須)去打工養家糊口。我們為全職同工禱告,求神藉弟兄姐妹供應他們的需要,使他們不放棄主的呼召,不必擔心家庭經濟問題和子女教育,認真牧養羊群,照顧神的家。
星期六
在中國,六十歲以上的長者近五成是所謂的「空巢老人」,其中近四分之一老人有孤獨感,且活在貧困線之下。教會中獨居的長者極需要信徒的關心。我們為參與老人事工的信徒和教會感恩,因為『我實在告訴你們,你們所作的,只要是作在我一個最小的弟兄身上,就是作在我的身上了。』(太 25:40)求主祝福和使用那些樂意服事長者的肢體,叫那些孤苦無依的人從神那裡得著平安與喜樂。
星期日
中國社會的孝道觀念逐漸解體,年輕子女責任缺失。近年來,出現了老人因缺失關愛或得不到子女的贍養的情況,也有乾脆把子女告上法庭。另外,也常有空巢老人去世多日後才被發現的悲劇。求主幫助我們不但是孝敬父母,也要在經濟上支持他們,免得主耶穌責備:「你們倒說:『人若對父母說:『我所當奉給你的,已經做了各耳板』(供獻的意思),以後你們就不容他再奉養父母。」 (馬可7:11-12)
星期一
子女「應當經常看望或者問候老年人」已經正式入法。 政府期望從法律層面敦促子女履行對老人的精神贍養義務。但是對於「421」家庭(一個孩子需供養父母,兩對祖父母)來說,這些試圖說服子女在物質和精神上承擔起贍養老人責任的做法,顯然很不現實。中國家長都願意子女孝順,但是最有效的教導就是自己先成為孝敬父母的榜樣。求主幫助我們成為無可指責的美好見證,凡所作都由心發出。

Tuesday, October 08, 2019

Prayer Request 10/8 - 10/14

Tuesday
To further strengthen ideological control and eliminate religious beliefs on campus, Beijing has adopted a series of policies to delete any religious words, like "God" and "Bible" in literary classics, dictionaries, and history textbooks. Christian parents in China are concerned about the atheist indoctrination in schools and the negative effects on children's faith. We know raising a godly child is an act of faith, just as Moses' parents who disobeyed the edict of Pharaoh because they believed God would use their child (Heb. 11:23).
Wednesday
In 2018, China launched a campaign to remove all references to religion in all schools. In 2019, in all textbooks and especially foreign classical literature, all references to "God" were changed to "lao tian ye", a vague and generic term for a deity. Once again, we pray for churches and Christian families in China. May God comfort the believing parents and add faith to them so they will know it is their responsibility to raise godly children. We pray, too, that churches will pray more fervently for the spiritual life of the children of believers and beseech His protection.
Thursday
China has rolled out new textbooks in history, language, law, and ethics in all primary and secondary schools. The new books include studies of 40 revolutionary heroes, writings by revolutionary leader Mao Zedong, and China’s territorial claims in the disputed South China Sea. Christian parents are very much concerned about their children entering schools and being indoctrinated by atheism and losing their faith in God. We pray for His mercy for churches and Christian families, joy in the time of great pressure, knowing that He is in control of all things and that their steadfast love for Him is what pleases God.
Friday
Many Chinese parents see political indoctrination as an anachronism in an era when China’s more than 181 million school children need modern education in math, science and liberal arts to get ahead. We thank God that more Christian parents in China are paying attention to the issues of faith and education of their children. We pray for wisdom for parents that they will use all means to share with children why faith in Jesus is good for them and what teachers teach is not to be believed.
Saturday
A small number of Chinese parents have started homeschooling in the recent past. Although the exact number is difficult to obtain, they were mostly in Beijing, Shanghai, and Guangdong, covering all ages from kindergarten to high school. But, the government has cracked down on homeschooling lately. We pray specifically for parents of young children that they will be diligent in teaching Bible stories and praying with their children, always taking time to discuss issues of faith and intentionally lay an early foundation of faith.
Sunday
In China, a second-grade lesson includes the story of the “little hero” Wang Erxiao, a 13-year-old cattle herder who is said to have died in 1942 while trying to protect the office of a Communist newspaper from Japanese soldiers. Let us continue to pray for Christian parents in China. They face unprecedented pressure in educating their children, not only the competition in schools but also making sure their children grow in Christian faith and resisting the atheistic teachings in schools.
Monday
While Mr. Xi is hardly the first Chinese leader to turn to patriotism to inspire the people, he has pushed a version that plays up the party’s role as a force for restoring China’s greatness. In some areas, students are required to report relatives who are Christians and they are warned that anyone who believes in Jesus will be expelled from schools. We believe that God can help the young Christian to stand firm in faith even under great persecution, just like Daniel and his friends who refused to compromise and to defile themselves.

星期二
中國政府為加強思想控制和除掉校園內的宗教信仰,通過一系列政策包括刪改文學名著、字典、歷史教科書感敏內容和「上帝」、「聖經」等字眼。信徒家長憂心忡忡,害怕孩子在無神論教育下生出排斥信仰的心。養育兒女相信神,就是信心的行為,如同摩西的父母親,違背王命,為的是相信神必使用祂自己所賜的孩子(來11:23)。
星期三
自2018 年起,在全中國校園發起抵制宗教信仰運動,刪除一切涉及宗教色彩的內容。2019 年初,所有納入教科書的文學著作、語文課本,尤其是外國的古典文學,其中的 「上帝」都改成「老天爺」。我們再次為教會和信徒家庭向神求憐憫,願神安慰信徒家長,加添他們信心,知道他們為神養育愛主的孩子是應當的,也是蒙福的。同時,教會也能同為信徒第二代的靈命守望禱告,求神保守。
星期四
教育部在中小學裡開始使用新版歷史、語文、法律和思想品德教科書,這些新課本中包括四十名革命英雄的故事、革命領袖毛澤東的著作,亦包括關於南海主權的書籍。學校和社會灌輸給孩子的知識與家長教導的背道而馳,家長無疑是與世界爭奪孩子,求主給父母屬天的智慧。 我們為中國教會,信徒的家庭求神的憐憫, 在壓力中仍有喜樂,深知神掌管一切,他們堅持愛主是神所紀念的。
星期五
許多家長把政治灌輸看成不合時宜的東西,認為當今時代要在中國超過1.81億的學生裡保持優勢,需要接受數學、科學和人文方面等等的教育。我們感謝神,有更多信徒家長在兒女的信仰和教育的問題上,開始有意識並重視。求主賜智慧給家長們,使用各樣的方式,能跟子女討論學校、老師教導的與基督信仰的差異,並且給予正確的教導。
星期六
有些家長因著種種原因,開始讓孩子「在家上學」。雖然準確的數目難以得著,這種家庭在沿海一線城市等地比較多,也涵蓋幼兒園至高中的各個階段。 我們為家中有年幼孩子的信徒禱告,求主提醒他們要認真與孩子分享信仰,把握機會與孩子研讀神的話,趁早為孩子奠定良好的信仰根基。
星期日
小學二年級的課本中有「小英雄」王二小的故事,他是一個13歲的放牛娃,據說他在1942年因試圖不讓日本兵破壞共產黨報社辦公室而身亡。讓我們切切為信徒家長禱告,他們面臨巨大的教養兒女壓力,不單單是學業的競爭,更是要緊緊幫助兒女對神的信仰,抗拒著來自老師和同學反對基督信仰的壓力。
星期一
雖然習並不是第一個用愛國主義取代革命理想的中國領導人,但在他推行的版本中,他強調了中國共產黨作為中華民族偉大復興力量的作用。在某些地區,老師要求學生舉報自己信神的親屬,同時警告信耶穌的都得被開除。我們祈求神幫助信徒的第二代,在逼迫中能站立的穩,如同但以理和他的朋友,拒絕妥協,不玷污世俗。

Saturday, October 05, 2019

Prayer Request 10/1 - 10/7

Tuesday
“Where does our happy life come from? Who gave it to us?” the teacher asked. “It comes from the blood of revolutionary martyrs! From the Red Army!” A student proudly said. This is a glimpse of patriotic education among the grade-schoolers in China. The Bible does not specify the age of accountability but clearly says children are saved by believing in Jesus(Matt. 18:6). We pray for Christian parents that they will know they are the most important teachers and the life-long models for their children to learn about God.
Wednesday
For decades, the Chinese Communist Party has pushed a stiff regimen of ideological education on students, requiring tedious lessons on Marx and Mao and canned lectures on the virtues of patriotism and loyalty. Nearly 65% of Christians believed in Jesus at the ages of 4 to 14 years old. We pray that believer parents will know how critical this ten year period is and make sure to help their children to come to know the Lord and sincerely follow Jesus.
Thursday
Now, amid fears that the party is losing its grip on young minds, President Xi Jinping is reshaping political education across China’s more than 283,000 primary and secondary schools for a new era. Parents need to spend time on the spiritual development of their children, especially when children are small and their parental influence is still great. We pray that Christian parents will intentionally and with a plan to teach the Bible and pray with their children.
Friday
Textbooks are getting a larger dose of Communist Party lore in China, including glorified tales about the party’s fights against foreign invaders like Japan. Schools are adding courses on traditional medicine and Confucian thought to highlight China’s achievements as a civilization. Many Chinese mothers are the so-called “tiger mom” who will do anything to make sure their children perform well scholastically. We pray for Christian mothers that they will take the time to pray with and share their passion for the Lord with their children.
Saturday
In China, in the students’ curriculum, the government is also scaling back discussion of iconoclastic writers like Lu Xun, amid concerns that exposing students to social criticism may inspire disobedience.Although most Christian parents know they are responsible for the moral and spiritual growth of their children, they still delegate it to their church. May the Lord forgive us, change us and help us to be serious about the effort to teach.
Sunday
In a stern directive issued, the party ordered schools to intensify efforts to promote “Chinese traditional and socialist culture"— a mix of party loyalty and patriotic pride in China’s past. The spiritual foundation of a child is shaped before the age of nine. And their spiritual identity is established before the age of 13. We pray for believer parents in China that they can raise children who will love the Lord, in the atheistic educational system.
Monday
In a new approach, the Communist Party of China is presenting itself less as a vanguard of proletarian revolution and more as a force for reviving China and restoring it to its rightful place as a world power.God has entrusted parents to nurture their children spiritually, instead of the church. We pray that more Christian parents will appreciate the seriousness of this sacred duty, and will teach and share the Biblical moral guidelines and values to their children from an early age.

星期二
老師問:「我們幸福的生活從哪裡來?是誰給了我們幸福生活?」四年級的學生回答:「是紅軍革命烈士的鮮血換來的!」這是中國小學裡的愛國教育的一部分。聖經沒有告訴我們小孩子可以信主的年齡,卻明確表明他們是能夠信主得救的(太18:6)。求神提醒家長,自己是幫助孩子認識神的重要老師,而父母的信仰見證也會影響孩子一生。
星期三
幾十年來,共產黨一直對學生進行嚴格的思想教育,要求他們學習的馬克思主義和毛澤東思想課程,給他們講述千篇一律的愛國主義和對黨效忠。大約63%的基督徒都是在四至十四歲信主的。求主幫助信徒家長注重孩子在這十年靈性發展的關鍵時間,幫助孩子信主,培養他們做主的門徒,一生跟從神。
星期四
由於擔心共產黨失去對年輕人思想的掌控,國家主席習近平正在為重塑逾28.3萬所中小學的思想政治教育而努力。父母在孩子的屬靈發展上要付出時間,尤其趁孩子還年幼,父母的影響最大時,更要把握時機。願主加力給每個信徒家長,身心有力、有計劃地培伴孩子讀經、禱告,建立堅穩的屬靈根基。
星期五
國家在中小學的教科書裡增添了更多共產黨的歷史,包括美化共產黨與外國侵略者(如日本)作戰的故事。學校正在增加中醫和儒家思想的課程,以突出中華文明的成就。許多中國媽媽以做「虎媽」自豪,她們為了孩子的成績更好會不惜一切的擺上。我們為基督徒母親禱告,求主教為母者願意花時間和孩子一起禱告,也跟孩子分享自己的屬靈心得和與神的關係。
星期六
在學生的教科書裡,政府也正在減少對魯迅這樣反傳統作家的討論,因為擔心學生在多接觸社會批評的理論後,會激發違抗政府之舉。雖然大多數基督徒父母都知道自己對孩子的品德和靈性發展有主要責任,但是仍然會把這擔子推給教會,幾乎放棄做孩子的屬靈帶領者。求主赦免我們,改變我們!
星期日
在一份措辭嚴厲的發表中,官方要求學校「加強中華優秀傳統文化和社會主義先進文化教育」— 對黨忠誠,對中國歷史的愛國主義自豪感。孩子的屬靈根基在九歲前基本定形;並且,13歲以前他們的屬靈身份已確立。我們為中國信徒家長能在無神論的教育制度中,仍然為神養育愛主的第二代來祈求。
星期一
在學校加強傳統文化等等的指引下,共產黨作為無產階級革命先鋒的作用被淡化,而其作為中華民族復興,恢復中國作為世界強國的應有地位的作用則被予以強化。上帝沒有把孩子的屬靈培養責任完全交給教會,而是託付給父母。我們為更多信徒家長知道這個神聖責任禱告,求主幫助他們教導孩子從小認識聖經,從神的角度去看人生,有合乎神心意的價值觀。