PRAYING FOR SHANGHAI

Praise the LORD! Praise the LORD, O my soul! I will praise the LORD as long as I live; I will sing praises to my God while I have my being. Put not your trust in princes, in a son of man, in whom there is no salvation. When his breath departs, he returns to the earth; on that very day his plans perish. Blessed is he whose help is the God of Jacob; who hope is in the LORD his God, who made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that is in them, who keeps faith forever; who executes justice for the oppressed, who gives food to the hungry. The LORD sets the prisoners free; the LORD opens the eyes of the blind. The LORD lifts up those who are bowed down; the LORD loves the righteous. The LORD watches over the sojourners; he upholds the widow and the fatherless, but the way of the wicked he brings to ruin. The LORD will reign forever, your God. O Zion, to all generations. Praise the LORD! – Psalm 146

Let’s unite this week, praying these words over the city of Shanghai. Shanghai is the largest city in China and a global financial hub, toting a population of over 14 million people. The city has a multicultural flair that exists in few other places in China. You’ll find a unique blend of cultures, from modern to traditional, from western to oriental. The city is dotted with new skyscrapers and old Shikumen architecture effortlessly combined to create Shanghai’s skyline. It’s a blend of old and new in every way, creating immense opportunity for the Gospel of Jesus to be heard.

Prayer Focus #1: National Believers

  • Praise God that His Church is growing at a staggering rate throughout China.  Most of this growth is within the majority Han Chinese – although minority groups have experienced growth as well.  Praise the Lord that His purposes prevail above all and amidst extreme persecution and suffering the Church was refined and shaped.
  • The church in Shanghai lives under the rule of oppressive government regulations that forbid them from meeting together, practicing, or expressing one’s faith. Pray that the Church, which still operates underground, would be strengthened encouraged and would continue to grow at an unprecedented rate. “I lift up my eyes to the hills. From where does my help come? My help comes from the LORD, who made heaven and earth. He will not let your foot be moved; he who keeps you will not slumber.” (Psalm 121:1-3)
  • China remains officially atheist with over 70 million communist party members.  Pray that an increasing amount of party members come to faith in Christ and that they will be a redemptive force within government.

Prayer Focus #2: Marketplace

  • Shanghai serves as the most influential center in East China, from an economic, financial, international trade perspective.
    • Pray that the Lord would send laborers for His kingdom through the means of the marketplace. Pray that marketplace professionals would be awakened to their potential to take the name of Jesus where many have still never heard. Pray that the Lord would equip those already working in Shanghai and would send others.
    • Pray that those that travel to Shanghai, short and long term, would be equipped to share the gospel in the context of their work as the Holy Spirit leads, “putting on, as shoes for their feet, the readiness given by the gospel of peace.” (Ephesians 6:15)

Prayer Focus #3: Labor Force

  • Pray that the God, in His justice, would loosen the shackles of greed and corruption and act on the behalf of the oppressed and exploited in Shanghai. Pray that “…He defend the cause of the poor of the people, give deliverance to the children of the needy, and crush the oppressor!” (Psalm 72:4)
  • Pray that those that hold positions of power would encounter the Lord, through Jesus and be changed.

Prayer Focus #4: Pray that some from LifePoint would be called out to GO!