Since the late 1970s, China has implemented and enforced a strict one-child policy. Created amidst fears of overpopulation, the family planning policies of the national government have long been a source of debate, criticism, and pride alternately. Without a doubt, the one-child policy has left a tremendous mark on Chinese society and values.
Last week, the government announced the shift to a two-child policy. Indications of the move had been growing in recent years as the government made tweaks and adjustments to the policy. Reaction has been mixed and many families have indicated that they continue to prefer one child despite the policy change. Whatever the implications, the policy change is a landmark move.
How to pray:
- Pray for justice and wisdom among those working on the policy. Pray for Christians to be involved in the process, both on the national policy-making level and on the local implementation level. Pray for God’s people in the government to be salt and light.
- Pray for the church to act wisely. Pray for the church to point to Christ in whatever may arise from this policy change. Pray for pastors and church leaders to think carefully and Biblically in whatever they may say surrounding the policy. Pray for the church to live in grace concerning family planning practices.
- Pray for young Christians to have healthy perspectives on family, parenting, and bearing children. Pray that God’s design for families would bring life and encouragement to many.
- Pray for those who mourn. Pray for families who feel like they have “missed” the opportunity to have more children. Pray for families who have aborted a second child or who might not be able to conceive a second child. Pray for the church to understand these griefs and to help bring reconciliation, restoration, and where needed, repentance.
- Pray for great sensitivity among all foreign workers serving the Chinese around the globe. This is one of the most sensitive issues in ministry to Chinese. Pray for the international community to listen first, letting our Chinese brothers and sisters process and pray through these issues before we attempt to speak.