"Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything."
James 1:2-4

The Gilland Family of 6!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Why China? Why Now? by James Loftin

I’m linking up today with my daddy(aka James Loftin) who left early this morning for China with 14 other friends/leaders from 6 churches in TX, AL, TN, GA & FL.  In China they will be hosted and led by Chinese believers, different people on different days but young **“Runner” will be traveling with the team the whole time.

** Runner is a 24-year-old Chinese Christian brother. He was a successful sprinter in college, and when he decided to trust Christ, he chose the English name Runner. “I am running with Jesus in his mission to the world.”  Runner feels called to be an evangelist.

I hope you will read Why China, Why Now and then print the prayer guide I’m including and join me in praying for these men and women and also for our brothers and sisters in China who know all to well what it means to “suffer for the sake of Christ”!  I am not including the exact dates and cities they will be in China for security reasons.  If you would like more information please contact me.

Why China? Why Now?  
by James Loftin

God does not love the Chinese any more than He loves the Russians or the Haitians, but China is not just another country. Throughout Christian history, God has chosen to boldly use specific nations or peoples at certain points in his ongoing global plan. It seems that the church in China now has God’s special anointing.

Unreached Population
There are more than 1.3 billion Chinese on the planet. Approximately one of every five people is Chinese. More than half have never heard the gospel; this is the largest unreached people group in the world.

China shares borders with 14 countries, whose residents comprise forty-five percent of the global population. Six are predominantly Islamic. Four are significantly Buddhist, and three are dominated by Atheistic Communism. Many authorities hold that North Korea is the single greatest nuclear threat in the world. Only China is positioned to have an effective spiritual and political impact on North Korea.

Global Leader
China’s economic, technological, and military power continues to grow, and China is becoming recognized as the single most influential country in the world. As more and more Chinese follow Christ, the values and culture of China will begin to shift. Today China stands at a crossroad. She is leaving her isolationist past in communist socialism, but her future posture is still undecided.

Harvest Time
When the Communists took over China in 1949, there were approximately one million Chinese Christians. Because of the persecution by the communists, the world Christian community thought Christianity would die in China. But God had other plans. The number of believers has grown to over 100 million — only seven percent of the population is Christian. The revival continues in China.

Vision of the Chinese Church
In the 1930s, the young church began to develop a back-to-Jerusalem vision as they saw themselves as the tool God would use to take the Gospel westward from China through the Muslim world and even to Israel. Although the political environment for Christians in China remains somewhat unpredictable, the church is beginning to send missionaries to areas where Western missionaries have had limited impact. In the near future, more missionaries may be sent out from China than from any other country.

Open Window
Even as the window to the West slowly opens, there are rising fears of how China’s economic and military strength could impact America. Fanned by the media, these fears may produce resistance to benevolence toward Chinese. However, the window of opportunity is open right now. Western Christians and churches are urgently invited to minister with our Chinese brothers and sisters in God’s miraculous work — today.

Pray for China
Written by James Loftin, Founder and President of FollowOne International
Learn more about this ministry by visiting www.followone.org


China Trip Prayer Itinerary May 2011-

The team includes 14 friends/leaders from 6 churches in TX, AL, TN, GA & FL. In China, we will be hosted and led by Chinese believers, different people on different days but young "Runner" will be with us throughout. Use your imagination to fill in some of the gaps in our very general descriptions below. At times the team will split into 2 or more subgroups per the ministry opportunities of the day.

Overall Prayer Request: Wisdom for James, Laura and Chinese partners as they make daily decisions about ministry & schedule options in light of the unusually tense security pressure on Christian activities right now.

Prayer Focus:

Scripture Reading:
Pray for the team to be mindful of all the preparation God has already done. Pray for favor at customs - regarding the requested resources & literature team members are carrying. Pray for team's sharpness mentally, physically and spiritually. Pray that they may be humble and without fear. Pray for James (Orlando) and Runner (Beijing) today.

Mark 1:1-3
Ephesians 2:10
Pray for focus. May nothing (jet lag, culture shock, etc.) distract the team from sensing the move of the Holy Spirit. May the team be open and responsive to what God would like them to do. May God to give them the strength and courage to say "Yes" to God's plans: May they be ready to be stretched. Pray for Don (Memphis).

1 Kings 3:12
Isaiah 55:8-9
Pray for the Holy Spirit to provide and bless divine conversations with new friends. May these future leaders of China to say "yes" to Jesus. Pray for the Spirit to intercede as the team visits Tiananmen Square. May they have strength as they struggle with jet lag and wisdom in sharing. Pray for Laura (Orlando).

Colossians 4:6
Esther 4:14
Pray for the church in China to be a blessing to the nations. Pray for the faithful Chinese Christian leaders. As the team makes new friends and encounters new things, may they acknowledge God in the midst of all the experiences. Pray for
Ben (Memphis, TN).

Habakkuk 3: 19
Psalm 96
Pray that the team will be reminded of God's amazing involvement in all the
beauty around them. As God works, may they be available for His use. Pray for
Chris (Thomasville, GA).

Psalm 78:1-7
Pray for the team as they serve with the gifts and talents God has given them for
His glory and for the expanding of His Kingdom. Pray for the Holy Spirit to
intercede for them. Pray for Abbye (Memphis, TN).

Romans 8:26-27
Pray for wisdom and boldness. Pray the team would catch a glimpse of God’s
sovereignty as they serve together. Pray that God would help them focus on Him
and rest in His presence. Pray for Nancy (Orlando, FL).

James 1: 5-6
Acts 28:31
Pray for God to grant the team a better understanding of "The Great Commission"
as a representation of God's heart toward the whole world. Pray for the team, that
they may be able to see more clearly the call on their lives. Pray for Kathy
(Tuscaloosa, AL).

Acts 2:38-39
Pray for those sharing His love on university campuses in China. May they be encouraged and strengthened. Pray for new relationships between seeking scholars and Chinese believers. Pray for strength for the team. In the Spirit's power, may they finish strong. Pray for Todd (Dallas, TX).

Mark 6:31-32
Isaiah 40:29-31
Pray for the team to be encouraged by how God is working around the world.
May the team be mindful of how they are all connected to the Kingdom. Pray for
divine appointments. Pray for Jeanene and Joy (Thomasville, GA).

Acts 9:31
Romans 10:9-15
Pray for the team to have sensitive spirits as they worship with fellow believers.
Pray that God would meet the spiritual needs of the Chinese churches. Pray for
Bill and Liz (Suwanee, GA).

John 7:37-38
Pray that the new connections and relationships made during the trip will bear great fruit. Pray for team members as they begin to share their experiences in
China with their home churches, friends and family. For God's glory!

John 15:16
Colossians 1:10

At different seasons in our lives God calls us to different things.  Sometimes it is to GO.  Sometimes it is to GIVE.  If unable to go or give, we are always able and called to PRAY!  I am dying to go to China!!!  The time has not yet come when I have been able to go, primarily because I've either been pregnant or nursing a baby for the past 6 years! :)  But I know my time is coming.  Until then I'll focus on my ministry as momma to these 4 blessings and count it joy to lift up my brothers and sisters on the other side of the world!!!


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