Pray for Our World: Greenland

Greenland is 85% glacial ice cap, the world’s largest island, and the lowest population density.  Total population is about 57,000.  The economy is primarily fishing and supported by the Danish government.  The culture of Greenland has been so ingrained with the inhospitable environment for so long, that it has been devastated by the change to more modern ways.  There is widespread immorality, sexual abuse, alcoholism, mental illness and suicide.  Thankfully there are some indigenous believers and missionaries that are helping with counseling, healing and deliverance through the work of the Holy Spirit.

In 1984, there were only about 20 born-again believers in the entire country.  Since then it has been growing.  Pray for more contemporary Bible versions to be available, training, resources, and counselors for the people.  Jesus offers hope to all, and it is the only lasting and true hope for all our problems.  Not religion, but knowing the living Jesus and having Him be a part of your life.

There is a restlessness within us that can only be satisfied when we rest in the presence of God. – AW Tozier

Pray for Our World: Croatia

Croatia is surrounded by Bosnia, Serbia, Hungary, Slovenia and the Adriatic Sea.  They are still recovering from Communist regime, wars between Serbs and Croatians, and have high unemployment, low wages, and high debt.  Income is about $15,000 per person.  Catholicism is the unofficial religion and many leaders in the Catholic Church are at the forefront of reconciliation and justice.  They have a higher percentage of Catholics attending mass than other European countries.  Pray that the Catholic Church and all Christian churches in the area are able to reach out to the people and provide the assistance they need.

Pray for Our World: Costa Rica

Costa Rica, an agricultural land between Nicaragua and Panama, is a stable influence to the surrounding land conflicts.  Roman Catholicism is the official state religion, and although other religions are not illegal, they are not quite equal before the law either.  The main issue seems to be unity among churches and denominations, which have left some leaving the Catholic church, others returning to the familiarity when evangelical churches did not continue to disciple, and declining church attendance for all.  Pray that all Christians will unite with one goal under Jesus Christ, which is to bring people to a real and sustaining faith in their lives.

Pray for Our World: Congo DRC

Congo Democratic Republic of Congo, formerly Zaire, contains most of the Congo River system and the Central African rainforest.  It is rich in diamonds, mineral resources, diverse flora, and has enough hydro-electric potential to power the entire continent.  But the corrupt government, frequent wars, and severe restrictions on religion have made it one of the poorest countries in the world.

Since their religious independence in 1980, there have been a proliferation of new churches and revivals, and many social, health and education services are now maintained by Christian groups instead of the government.  The church has emerged as the only viable national structure to endure the earlier collapse of the country.  It was able to plug the gap left by a failed state.

Yet there is still a powerful spiritual evil left in the land from years of abuse – systematic rape, unspeakable mutilation, cannibalism, witchcraft, and evil practices against children.  Pray that God will deliver this land from the evil and bring it back to the resourceful land God meant it to be.  Pray for the churches and Christians who are there that they may be a light for good.

Pray for Our World: China

“By 2030, China will almost certainly have more Christians than any other country”, according to Fenggang Yang, director of the center on religion and Chinese society at Purdue University.  While we do not know the exact number of Christians in China and many keep silent about it, I think we would be surprised to know just how much God is working behind the scenes in China.  Christianity did not appear in China until the 7th century during the Tang dynasty.  Because they were so closed off from the rest of the world, they did not hear about the life, death and resurrection of Jesus until 700 years later.

China is an ancient and complex nation.  It is the third largest state in the world with over 1 billion people, 500 indigenous ethnic groups and 55 nationalities (not including Hong Kong and Taiwan which will be listed separately).  There is strict government control of religious groups, five of which are officially recognized: Buddhism, Daoism, Islam, Protestant, and Catholic.  There has been some easing of persecution in recent years.  The state recently recognized that there are over 300 million religious believers and over 50 million Christians in unregistered church networks.  The traditional beliefs of the Chinese are a blend of folk religion, Daoism and Buddhism. About 50% of Chinese are considered non-religious, and the official status of China is atheist.

God has protected and grown the church in China on a scale unforeseen in recent times.  Persecution designed to destroy the church has instead inspired fervent prayer and evangelism.  Since the 1980’s there have been vast networks and communities of believers meeting in house churches.  God has a big plan for China.  In God’s timing, the life and purpose of Jesus’ life will be made known to all in China.  When Jesus died on the cross, he was thinking and praying for those in China, ones who were not even known to much of the rest of the world at that time.