God of love, of protection and providence, we pray for our brothers and sisters who live in China.
Empower the Christians who worship you in hidden places and behind closed doors.
Strengthen those who lift up your name in plain sight and are persecuted for their faith.
When people are arrested or harmed, imprisoned or tortured, ridiculed, locked out, shut down, we pray for resilience.
Protect your people as they read your word under the flickering lights of night.
Remind them that they are seen, known, and delighted in by the one who created them, who created the world.
Strengthen them with the knowledge that they are prayed for.
Powerful God, move the government leaders and powerful people of China. You are the one who changes hearts. You are the one who rules the nations.
Father God, we join our hearts with the Apostle Paul who prayed, “for this reason, ever since I heard about your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for the saints. I have not stopped giving thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers. I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better (Ephesians 1:15-17).”
We offer these prayers, for those you love in China. Come quickly, Lord. Amen.
In this Psalm we read that where our strength fails, God’s grace and mercy rise. Out of his painful experience, the psalmist writes with the assurance that God has a plan for his life.
Sometimes we say, “God will never give us more than we can handle.” But we read in the Bible that this statement is far from the truth. While God does not give us trouble, frequently we find ourselves in situations where the trouble we are experiencing takes us to the end of our abilities and strength. Yet, like the psalmist, we can find hope in this: while life will most certainly gives us more than we can handle, we will never receive more than God can handle.
God is the one who turns our wailing into dancing, our sackcloth into garments of praise, and our silence into singing. God is always at work. In our suffering, we can call on God to save. In our pain, we can cling to God’s promises of hope and a future. In the darkness, we can testify to God’s faithfulness. These are God’s promises to the people of God in North Korea, in Canada, in the United States, and around the world—yesterday, today, and forever.