Worldwide Wednesday – M Pray for Myanmar (Burma)
Wow I can’t believe it’s been another week – thanks for joining us as we unite our hearts to pray around the world. I am so excited now to get to the letter “M” – I am learning a lot about countries I’ve not heard of. Today we pray for Myanmar. Never heard of it before today. But yes, I have heard of Burma. Let’s find out more. Here’s some information about the country, the geography and the people of Myanmar.
Thank you for your prayers!
“Therefore I tell you, whatever you as for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive him, so that your Father in heaven may forgive your sins.” Mark 11:24
Myanmar – Burma
Myanmar is a country in Southeast Asia, also known as Burma, its also called the Golden Land. With an area of 676,578 km² the country is almost twice the size of Germany or slightly smaller than the U.S. state of Texas.
Myanmar is bordered in north and northeast by China, in east by Laos and Thailand, in south by the Andaman Sea and the Bay of Bengal and in west by Bangladesh and India. With 5,881 m (19,295 ft) Mount Hkakabo Razi in Kachin state on the border tri-point with China and India is the highest elevation in Myanmar and Southeast Asia’s highest mountain. Main rivers are the Chindwin and the Irrawaddy (Ayeyarwady) river. Basin and delta of the Irrawaddy River ringed by a horseshoe of high mountains that isolates the country from India, China and Thailand.
Myanmar has a population of 51.4 million people (2014 census). Largest city, former capital, and the economic center of Myanmar is Yangon, capital is since 2005 the planned city of Naypyidaw. Spoken languages are Burmese.
Area: 676,577 sq km
Official language: Burmese Languages: 116 All languages
Largest Religion: Buddhist
Answer to Prayer
Praise God for the refining of the Church, made possible by the desperation of persecution, poverty and isolation. Liberal groups have drawn closer to biblical truth, and lax believers are driven toward a more dynamic life of faith. Myanmar is a classic example of how suffering, while lamentable, serves to accomplish God’s purposes for His people.
Challenge for Prayer
The military regime seeks to destroy Christianity (which it calls “the C-virus”), yet faith keeps spreading. Christians are generally kept out of positions of power and influence. Military campaigns against Christian minorities are well publicized, and over 3,000 Christian villages have been burned out in the last 10 years. Churches are not given permission to register and are thereby considered illegal and subject to harassment. The expulsion of foreign Christian workers in 1966 left a young church to cope on its own with little mature leadership or infrastructure. Adversity, persecution and isolation have helped shape a resilient, enduring faith.
Indigenous Rohingya believers face harsh treatment. These people are internally displaced, which has created ethnic and religious tension. Myanmar also recently saw its first free and fair elections in 25 years, which saw a landslide win for the opposition under Aung San Suu Kyi. Most ethnic minority parties did not win seats in the new parliament, so it will likely include less Christians than before. During the campaign and elections, the Burmese army continued its attacks against ethnic minorities in Kachin and Shan State, even though a ceasefire agreement was signed. Christians are strongly affected by such attacks and the level of violence is high. Additionally, an organization of Buddhist radical monks (Ma Ba Tha) increased their campaigns against religious minorities and successfully helped introduce four laws for the “Protection of Race and Religion”, building insurmountable hurdles for conversions and religiously mixed marriages.
Dear Lord, Help us to know how to pray for the men, women, boys and girls of Myanmar. Thank you for your heart for people. Thank you for mobilizing Bible teachers, missionaries and others to serve you and share with this wonderful nation. We ask you to strengthen the local believers, the churches and other ministries as they reach out and share your amazing love. Thank you we know our prayers really do make a difference. In Jesus’ name, Amen.