Nations will come to your light, and kings to the brightness of your dawn. –Isaiah 60:3
1. HAPPY NEW YEAR. The new year is often marked with renewed hope and expectation. As this new year begins, lift up the nearly 2 billion people in East Asia who live without Christ and the lasting, firm hope that he provides. Ask God to soften hearts and move in a mighty way to bring many to faith despite cultural, family or political opposition.
2. SPORTS MINISTRY. Using community sports ministry offers great potential, both among adults and youth. Pray for a couple living among an unreached people group. They’ve had success serving their neighborhood through soccer coaching. As deeper friendships develop, pray for opportunities to share Christ’s love.
3. FOLLOW UP. As the new year begins, many Christian workers will follow up with nonbelievers who attended Christmas outreaches in December. Pray for East Asians who have heard the message of Christ but not yet put their faith in Jesus. Pray for God’s Spirit to move in their hearts and for spiritually significant conversations with believers in the new year.
4. DIASPORA OUTREACH. As the spring semester launches in colleges across the country, pray for Diaspora workers building friendships with foreign students. Pray that God empowers the team to see grounded disciples returning to their home countries, fully following Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.
5. MEDICAL MINISTRIES. Please pray for a couple in East Asia seeking God’s wisdom to begin a hospice care ministry in their region. They request prayer for guidance and direction speaking with medical and government officials. Pray this new outreach ministry will have wide-ranging impact.
6. UNCERTAIN FUTURE. Thank God for a first-term couple continuing to move forward in language learning, even though many uncertainties for future ministry in that region are evident. They request patience and continued peace while waiting to see what the future holds for them.
7. MOBILIZING FOR PRAYER. The OMF office team in Germany wants to see an increase in prayer partners. Pray for someone who could take up the role of prayer coordinator, encouraging Germans to pray for East Asia.
8. BIBLE TRANSLATION. Praise God that Bibles are available in Vietnam. Join church leaders in praying for increased use of modern translations. Pray also for future translations into many minority languages that still have no or few scripture resources.
9. PERSEVERING FAITH. In the midst of growing opposition and stress, a couple on home assignment longs for good news from their area of East Asian ministry. They affirm how God is faithful and encourage believers to steadfastly pray for areas where persecution is evident. Pray that God’s purposes would prevail during this challenging phase.
10. VISION TRIP. Please pray for a prayer and vision trip to Thailand. Mark Leighton is leading five others through Central Thailand, Isaan and Bangkok January 11―22. Three of those going are seriously considering long-term mission work. An additional couple will join the first three days who are considering long-term mission service.
11. TRANSFORMATION THROUGH TRAUMA. A missionary wife recently wrote a moving testimony about how she considers a local believer to be her heroine. Thank God for mutual ministry relationships where both East Asians and expatriate workers may strengthen one another serving in a women’s trauma center.
12. FINANCE AND TECHNOLOGY. The OMF (U.S.) finance team in Colorado is working through year-end and audit preparation. Also, the information technology team is working with a new consulting firm and is set to perform a major re-wire today. May the office staff be able to continue operations starting next week.
13. PRAYING FOR THE NORTH. Pray for several long-term staff gifted in research collecting prayer points focused on the people of North Korea (the DPRK). The team has begun work on a new prayer guide. Ask God to direct their efforts so that this prayer resource will challenge hundreds of readers toward intercession.
14. ANIMAL PLANET. In one area, missionary children have opportunities to meet together for “Home School Week,” learning about different types of animals and visiting a nearby zoo. Praise God for gifted educators like Christina Stidham serving missionary families with creative, engaging settings for their children.
15. BUILDING CONNECTIONS. Mike and Rachel thank God that a recent college graduate plans to join their team from January through March. They want to connect her with local people through teaching English to children. Their proposal seems somewhat unusual and requires special permission. Pray that God will open the right doors so that she will have a meaningful way to contribute to the welfare of their city.
16. STAFFING NEEDS. Serving and supporting field missionaries requires many gifted people filling critical roles. Continue praying for two open positions in Thailand: an administration manager and qualified guest home managers, both needed by summer 2019.
17. SAVING FACE. Workers in Myanmar find that where “saving face” and status are paramount, the inability to forgive and reconcile can pose challenges in relationships between people of different ethnic groups. Pray for ethnic harmony in Myanmar and for wisdom in relationships with national co-workers.
18. ONE IN TWELVE. Thank God for mission mobilizer Becca Lufkin in Chicago with her opportunities to recruit students at Moody Bible Institute. She challenged them to pray for the 215 million believers worldwide facing persecution. That’s one of every 12 Christians.
19. DISASTER RELIEF. Continue praying for recovery and restoration efforts in the areas of Sulawesi, Indonesia. Both a recent tsunami and earthquake have stretched the resources of people providing relief. May God abundantly bless the majority people with both spiritual grace and immediate physical provision.
20. SEEKING GOD’S DIRECTION. Please pray for several leaders serving the Mekong area as they meet together January 21—25. They are seeking the Lord’s wisdom with the theme “Walking in step with the Spirit.”
21. URBAN MIDDLE CLASS. Missionaries in Taiwan request prayer for a desired revival in the urban middle class church, that they will reach out into rural areas, to the working class and to the communities around them. May God renew the workers with joy as they share the gospel throughout Taiwan.
22. MOBILIZING KOREANS. Praise God for local churches throughout South Korea. Pray that many more South Koreans would seek to be a blessing to the peoples of East Asia. May God work through churches, sending many missionaries who share the good news.
23. BUILDING TRUST. Praise God for opportunities provided to medical missionaries who patiently offer care to local rural families hesitant to explore new ways of health care access. A missionary couple patiently worked with a family, slowly building trust, and first steps of learning more about Christ are in place. Pray that many more gifted medical personnel would respond to dozens of opportunities in ministry with East Asians.
24. CONFERENCE CONNECTIONS. Pray that OMF mission recruiters might have strong, ongoing connections with interested people who attended the Chinese Missions Convention as well as the InterVarsity Urbana Conferences last month. May scores of new missionaries come forward for service.
25. SINGAPORE BIBLE COLLEGE. Thank God for Christian colleges and seminaries based in East Asia, faithfully equipping students for church-planting ministry. A Chinese couple is set to graduate in May and then pursue their vision for ministry with minority peoples in far northwest China. Pray that God would provide for each step as they trust him for direction.
26. JAPANESE STUDENTS. Thank God for university ministry work among students. May the Lord call many students to accept Jesus Christ as Savior during this critical point in their lives. Pray too that future church leaders would develop from this ministry.
27. DIFFICULT PLACES. Sowing the gospel in places like East Asia is no easy process. Much of the work OMF does requires years of focused prayer and consistent ef¬fort by faithful workers in the field. Lift up efforts regarding prayer mobilization for East Asia. Ask God to raise up more intercessors.
28. EQUIPPING WOMEN. Praise God for a fruitful women’s conference held in Cambodia last month. OMF workers Kreg and Jenny request prayer that these women might grow in their ability to stay connected and meet for prayer, training and fellowship.
29. SPIRIT-LED DIRECTION. Pray for Christian workers in Myanmar seeking Spirit-led direction and clear ministry focus for the year ahead. Praise God that partnerships with local believers are developing. Pray for wisdom to develop effective, fruitful intercultural relationships among churches.
30. DEARLY LOVED. Eighty-six percent of Muslims, Hindus and Buddhists do not know a Christian and have no one in their circle of relationships who can share the love of Christ with them. Pray for these groups of people to know they are dearly loved by God.
31. FACING LONELINESS. Returnees who come to Christ overseas and then return home may seem confident, but often the changed relationship with family and friends once they go home creates loneliness. Pray that new believers would know the power of Christ to break down barriers, heal relationships and restore marriages.
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