PRAYING FOR JAPAN

The Need in Japan

Japan has been, and remains, one of the most orderly and admirable societies in the world. However, Japan is also at a point in its history where it is experiencing unprecedented social upheaval, which creates anxiety and uncertainty throughout the culture. Every segment of the population is impacted.

•    An overview for how to pray for Japan (below)
•    Trends & issues in Japan
•    Japan’s sociological needs
•    Japan’s spiritual needs

An Overview for How to Pray for Japan
by Dave Walker

“I have posted watchmen on your walls, O Jerusalem;
they will never be silent day or night.
You who call on the Lord, give yourselves no rest,
and give him no rest till he establishes Jerusalem
and makes her the praise of the earth.”
– Isaiah 62:6-7

The Lord is raising up intercessors all over the world to spearhead the advance of the church into unreached and resistant areas. The fact that you are reading this article indicates that the Lord is establishing watchmen on the walls to petition the Lord for His people in Japan. You are part of a growing stream that will ultimately turn into a river of revival for the nation of Japan. This prayer guide is being used around the world to link Japanese Christians and Japan watchers in a prayer-net of intercession.

You have an extremely important position in Kingdom work. Do not grow weary in doing well through prayer. Carve out time for prayer. We consider this guide not so much as a finished product that includes all the needs of Japan and the church, but rather as an introduction and starting point for prayer. As you focus your heart on Japan, ask the Lord to broaden your heart with the deep things that are on His heart for His people in Japan. Along with the requests found in the guide, ask Him for things that reflect His character, His glory and His covenant love for His people. YOUR PRAYERS ARE FOUNDATIONAL IN BRINGING SPIRITUAL CHANGE TO THE CHURCH!! Therefore ASK BIG; base your prayers on His greatness. May He enlarge your heart for Himself, Japan and the world.

Here are some key prayer issues facing the church in Japan:

Unity in the church

The church is split into over 120 denominations. There are major divisions between Charismatic, Evangelical and Mainline churches with little communication or cooperation between them. Pray that these barriers will be broken down and a spirit of John 17:21 lived out.

Leadership training

Pastors, though trained in theology, need to have a vision for and the skill to train dedicated disciples. Another concern is that even though the church has been growing at a very slow rate, because of low seminary enrollment and retirements there will be a major shortage of pastors by the year 2010. Ask the Lord to provide such people as described in II Timothy 2:2 and I Timothy 3:1 for the church in Japan.

Discipleship

Application of biblical truth on a daily basis is a great challenge for believers who are continually being pressured to conform to this monolithic, homogeneous culture. This keeps many Christians from a consistent witness and worship. Many baptized Japanese fall away within the first five years. Ask the Lord to impart a grace to His people that will enable them to live out Romans 12:2-20.

Intercession

Since revival is preceded by a spirit of prayer and intercession, people, with a God-granted burden to labor in prayer are greatly needed. Ask the Lord to establish more and more watchmen (Isaiah 62:6,7).

Revitalized worship

Many of the conservative churches maintain a form-centered worship that lacks the vitality of the Spirit. Ask the Lord to break in and give His people a new song to sing for the praise of His name (Psalm 98).

Missions

The Japanese church has only begun to be a blessing to the nations. Ask the Lord to grant a vision and burden for the nations of the earth to His church. Japan is remembered among the Asian people as the nation that caused great harm and hurt during World War II. Ask the Lord to make the church a balm and blessing to the nations of Asia (Isaiah 49:6).
May the Lord strengthen your heart and make you a blessing to Japan and all nations through prayer.

Dave Walker, OC International Missionary

*Prayer guide source: AsianAccess.org