An official report compares delinquency among high school students in China, Japan, Korea, and the United States. It looks at smoking, drinking, gambling, pornography, skipping school, and drug abuse. Drug abuse is lowest in China but they rate highest in running away from home with a whopping one out of five students! Having only one child presents a great challenge to parents of teenagers. We pray for wisdom, patience, and gentleness for Christian people who are struggling with parenting issues, especially when their children are rebellious and no longer interested in attending church. We pray, too, that churches can provide assistance to parents through training and support classes. font>
The breakdown of communication between parents and their children is a prevalent and a major problem in China. Children turn deaf ears on their parents and will not even speak to them, so many parents are at a loss to know how to get their only child to talk with them. Believers have few resources teaching them how to raise children according to the Scripture. Most church leaders struggle with the same problem at home as the laymen do. We pray for healthy Christian families and parents who are able to demonstrate God's unconditional love.
Singapore opened its very first casino during the Chinese Year of the Tiger. It has an ambitious goal of attracting 13 million tourists, with 20-25% of them from China. Although Singapore is small, it has many tourists, students and even immigrants from Mainland China. Let us pray for all the mission works, seminary training, and church support coming from Singapore into China. May these ministries and resources accomplish great results among China churches.
No one knows the number of Chinese pastors who quit their churches because of problems or infidelity in their marriages or other temptations. We hear how some leaders fall but many more simply silently quit. When it comes to serving in Chinese churches, workers are falsely pressured into believing that their marriages and family should be second to their church work. Infidelity and divorce are common in and outside of the church including church workers and believers alike. Sadly, the Chinese church is in great need of more marriage counseling skills. May the Lord have mercy on our families. Many stand in the pulpit but their marriages and families are in tatters. Let us pray about this heart-wrenching reality.
Ancient politics was all about "personal relationship" which decided whether one got promoted or demoted. Modern China is not a whole lot different and thus this the famous saying, "Guanxi (relationship) is everything." Many Chinese believers wrongly believe the best way to share the gospel is through personal relationships done discreetly and privately to avoid bringing unnecessary attention to themselves and their church. They literally fear that their identity as Christians will be known. We pray that all believers will have the courage to witness for Jesus.
What is the most common parent-child relationship problem in China? For urban parents, it is being too busy. In rural families, it is the absence of parents because they go to the cities to work and families are re-united only once or twice a year. Let us pray especially for Christian families that are practically disjointed. We pray for the children who usually live with a relative, for their fledgling faith and for the parents that they will stay faithful sexually and continue to maintain their faith in God.
Some churches in China still hold to the extreme idea of "suffering" and see confronting the officials as "suffering persecution for Christ". Within some rural churches it is considered an honor to go to jail and they adore those who suffered persecution during the Cultural Revolution. To comply with the government regulations or go against them is not only a deeply emotional but also a personal thing. We pray for those who choose to defy the government and are willing to pay the price of such an action. We uplift them in our prayers and ask the Lord to give them peace, the courage to live out their faith and convictions, and above all to have the love of Jesus Christ in their lives.